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Private Mission digs in to win $200,000 Santa Maria S. (G2)

June 19, 2022

Private Mission and jockey Juan Hernandez win the Santa Maria Stakes (G2) – BENOIT PHOTO

Into Mischief’s 4-year-old filly Private Mission won the third graded stakes of her career Saturday at Santa Anita Park with a gritty one-length score in the Santa Maria S. (G2).

The Baoma Corp colorbearer won both the Zenyatta S. (G2) and Torrey Pines S. (G3) during her 3-year-old campaign. She is the 12th stakes winner of 2022 for Into Mischief, the top figure on the North American General sire list.

Private Mission got an excellent trip in the 1 1/16-mile Santa Maria. She sat patiently in second for the first half of the race, then took command for good with about three furlongs to run. Blue Stripe (ARG) was late on the scene, but proved to be no threat to the winner, who finished the course in 1:43.46.

“We were sitting in a perfect spot, and it was just a matter of whether they were good enough or not,” trainer Mike McCarthy said. “We passed a race up in New York to stay for this race, which ended up being the right decision, so it all worked out well today.”

With a record of 5-1-0 from nine starts, Private Mission has earned $397,300. She was bred in Kentucky by Mt. Brilliant Broodmares LLC.