Nine In A Row: Escape Clause Takes Kathryn Crosby By DQ

Cinderella lives.

Escape Clause, a four-year-old Canadian-bred filly purchased for $3,200 as a yearling, sired by a stallion standing for a stud fee of $990, was awarded her ninth consecutive victory and 18th overall in 25 starts when original winner Excellent Sunset was disqualified in the featured $83,170 Kathryn Crosby Stakes Friday, opening day of Del Mar’s fall season.

Escape Clause, a daughter of Going Commando owned and trained by Don Schnell and ridden by Ruben Fuentes, went to the post an overlooked 18-1 despite her sparkling record, compiled while campaigning primarily in her home country and at Canterbury Park in Minnesota.

Prominent from the start of the one-mile contest over the infield Jimmy Durante Turf Course, Escape Clause engaged the 4-1 Excellent Sunset in the stretch and was forced to check when Excellent Sunset bore in nearing the wire. The stewards posted the inquiry sign and then disqualified Excellent Sunset, who was ridden by Mario Gutierrez, for interference. The margin at the wire was a half-length.

Sweet Charity was third, a length and one-quarter farther back, with Way to Versailles fourth in the field of eleven older fillies and mares. Pyscho Sister and Pantsonfire were withdrawn.

Escape Clause earned $48,660 to increase her lifetime bankroll to $324,637. She returned $39.40, $16.40 and $10.20. Excellent Sunset paid $6.20 and $6.20, while Sweet Charity returned $9.60 to show. Time for the distance was 1:35.08.

Prior to the race, Schnell, a trainer for 40 of his 66 years, said, “She’s been racing horses that are not near the caliber of horses she’ll be facing Friday. It’s going to be a really big test for her.” Obviously, she passed the test.

Trainer Peter Miller moved to within two of the 1,000-winner milestone as he won two races on the program, Eskenforadrink in the second and Mongolian Window in the fifth. He is scheduled to run two horses on Saturday’s program which begins at 12:30 p.m.

Because there were no perfect tickets in Friday’s Pick Six, Saturday’s card will have a carryover of $32,265.

OWNER/TRAINER Don Schnell (Escape Clause, finished 2nd, moved to 1st on DQ) – “I wasn’t sure at all that they would put us up. But the rider (Ruben Fuentes) told me he thought he would have won it if he didn’t have to stop on her. The right people (the stewards) agreed with him.

“She’s just a win machine. She does nothing but run. The idea here was to try her on the grass. I didn’t think this race would come up too tough. Then they drew it and I saw the PPs and I thought I might be in big trouble. But she proved me wrong. It’s not the first time she’s done that.

“I’ve always thought her best race was at a mile and a sixteenth, or a mile and an eighth. But this is the sixth time she’s run at a mile and she’s won all six. I might have to adjust my way of thinking.

“I bought her for $3,200 and she’s been nothing but good to me ever since.”

(Schnell was told that Del Mar has a mile on the grass for fillies and mares – the Grade I Matriarch on Sunday, December 2, closing day.)

“My goodness, Grade I. You know, I’ve never won a Graded race – not any kind. I’ve never even run in a Graded race. But I’d have to say that all possibilities are open for her now. I know she likes the turf course. Who knows? We’ll see.”

The post Nine In A Row: Escape Clause Takes Kathryn Crosby By DQ appeared first on Horse Racing News | Paulick Report.

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