Classic Empire Filly Delivers Untapable Upset

Crown Imperial | Coady

Crown Imperial (f, 2, Classic Empire–Mi Fiori, by Congrats), beaten just a nose by the streaking Amidst Waves (Midshipman) in Saratoga's Bolton Landing S. Aug. 20, delivered a 13-1 upset in Wednesday's $500,000 Pepsi Untapable S. at Kentucky Downs.

She was outsprinted in eighth through scorching early fractions of :20.79 and :44.32, and, after diving toward an inviting opening toward the inside beneath Ricardo Santana, Jr. in the stretch, came alive to get the money by 1 1/4 lengths. Copper Em (Copper Bullet) was second; Buttercream Babe (Twirling Candy) was third.

A debut winner over the dirt in Indiana May 31, she hit the board in her next two attempts versus stakes company, finishing a close second in the Prairie Gold Lassie S. July 7 and third while making her grass debut in the Colleen S. at Monmouth Park July 29.

Crown Imperial becomes the 10th stakes winner for Classic Empire. Mi Fiori produced a filly by Midnight Storm in 2022 and a colt by Goldencents in 2023. The Classic Empire/Congrats cross is also responsible for 2022 GIII Gotham S. winner Morello.

“She is what we call tiny but mighty,” winning trainer John Ortiz said. “She's a small filly with the biggest heart. She got started in Ocala with (GI Spinaway S. winner) Brightwork (Outwork). They were partners, stablemates down there. I think they were doing a little planning in the paddock, I guess. They knew they wanted to be the best, so here we are.”

He added, “Obviously it's early, but Keeneland has a 'Win and You're In' (for the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf). I guess you consider taking her straight there. We'll just see what happens in the next three weeks.”

PEPSI UNTAPABLE S., $499,286, Kentucky Downs, 9-13, 2yo, f, 6 1/2fT, 1:16.33, fm.
1–CROWN IMPERIAL, 120, f, 2, by Classic Empire
                1st Dam: Mi Fiori, by Congrats
                2nd Dam: Shoo In, by Dynaformer
                3rd Dam: Satin Promise, by Dixieland Band
1ST BLACK TYPE WIN. O/B-4 G Racing (KY); T-John Alexander
Ortiz; J-Ricardo Santana, Jr. $294,150. Lifetime Record:
5-2-2-1, $374,450.
2–Copper Em, 120, f, 2, Copper Bullet–Lovely Em, by Scat
Daddy. ($8,000 Wlg '21 KEENOV; $48,000 Ylg '22 FTKJUL).
1ST BLACK TYPE. O-Winchell Thoroughbreds LLC; B-Winning
Bloodstock (KY); T-Steven M. Asmussen. $96,500.
3–Buttercream Babe, 120, f, 2, Twirling Candy–Runway Ready,
by Mr. Greeley. ($140,000 Ylg '22 KEESEP; $180,000 2yo '23
OBSAPR). 1ST BLACK TYPE. O-Three Diamonds Farm; B-Repole
Stable, Inc. (KY); T-Michael J. Maker. $48,250.
Margins: 1 1/4, HD, NK. Odds: 13.73, 11.06, 5.56.
Also Ran: Hidden Class, Zo Lee, Honey Dijon, Sweetcatherinerose, Candi Girl, Song of Norway, Mya's Halo, Testament, Judy Elaine. Scratched: Determined Driver, Determined Sail, Fairhopecurly. Click for the chart or VIDEO, sponsored by FanDuel TV.

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