Longshot Stephanie Got Even Extends Win Streak with American Beauty Score

Jan. 23, 2011

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HOT SPRINGS, AR (Sunday, Jan. 23, 2011) – The step up into stakes competition was no problem for Martin Brothers Racing Stables’ Stephanie Got Even as she delivered her fifth straight victory in Sunday’s $50,000 American Beauty Stakes at Oaklawn Park.

Not only was it the first career stakes win for the 4-year-old Stephen Got Even filly, but it was also the first Oaklawn stakes win for trainer Joe Martin, who co-owns the filly with his brother Bill. The brothers are natives of Hot Springs, but had never won a stakes at their home track before Sunday.

Stephanie Got Even Has No Trouble Getting Her 1st Career Stakes Win in the American BeautyBreaking from post two of nine, jockey Ernesto Oro settled the eventual winner into fifth place along the rail as Cosmo Girl grabbed the early lead and proceeded to set fractions of :22 1/5 and :46 1/5 for the first half mile. Stephanie Got Even, who had moved into third place entering the stretch, responded gamely as her jockey moved her off the rail and had no trouble catching the leader for the one-length victory. Vertical Vision, who had raced close to the pace, held on for third.

The winner completed the six furlong race for fillies in mares in 1:12 over a wet fast track. As the third-highest price on the board, she returned $48.40, $18.40, and $9.20. The exacta paid a whopping $1,247.40 and the trifecta was $2,919.30.

Decelerator, the even-money favorite, was a brief threat at the top of the lane, but faded to eighth. Her jockey, Terry Thompson, claimed foul against Oro for interference in the stretch, but it was not allowed by the stewards and the order of finish remained unchanged.

“We just took a shot going in here,” said Martin. “We were looking for an allowance race, but it never came up, so we just took a chance and it was a great chance. We got her for just $1,200, and that was just taking a shot. We didn't set out to get her, but the price was so good we just took her without even looking at the X-rays or anything. We got her back and checked her out and there was nothing. Took a shot there too and it worked out.”

“She just really, really came together for us, especially when we put her on the dirt,” added Martin. “She just exploded, and started winning. We sent her against a filly, who had won a $100,000 and she beat her and we figured we were on to something. This race was just so tough, we never would have thought she would have won a race at Oaklawn, but she just tries so hard. We live here and this is our first stakes win here. It's just so much fun I can hardly stand it.”

Stephanie Got Even has now won five of seven races and has earned $85,573.

Additional Quotes:

Jockey Ernesto Oro, winner aboard Stephanie Got Even:

“She's a one run filly so I had to wait a while for room. I really felt good about her in the stretch. I could feel the power beneath me.”

Trainer Joe Petalino, second with Cosmo Girl:

“She ran big. There was a speed bias all day, but of course I found a way to stop it, but she did great.”

Jockey Bryan McNeil, second aboard Cosmo Girl:

“She ran a great race. It's hard to let her go out there and get into the speed because she can be tough to relax, but she made the lead pretty easily. When that filly (Vertical Vision) went by her I thought she'd quit, but she kept getting to her and getting to her, I thought I was going to win, but then I saw (the winner) outside.”

Jockey Terry Thompson, eighth aboard favorite Decelerator

“Six furlongs is tough for her against these kind. The winner bumped me, so I claimed foul.”