By Steve Sherack
ELMONT, NY — Godolphin homebred and 'TDN Rising Star' Pretty Mischievous (Into Mischief) followed up her thrilling GI Kentucky Oaks victory with a hard-fought, head decision over Dorth Vader (Girvin) in Friday's GI Acorn S. at Belmont Park. Occult (Into Mischief) was another four lengths back in third.
Cutting back to a one-turn 1 1/16 miles here, the 9-5 second-choice raced within striking distance in an outside fifth as the stretching-out and favored 'Rising Star' Munnys Gold (Munnings) led through fractions of :23.34 and :46.37. Pretty Mischievous loomed boldly while three wide approaching the quarter pole and looked well on her way after hitting the front in the stretch. Dorth Vader, making her first start for George Weaver after finishing fifth in the Kentucky Oaks, made her work for it, however, and battled back gamely along the inside down the stretch. Pretty Mischievous showed her class in the end to win her second straight and joins fellow recent Kentucky Oaks winners Bird Town (Cape Town) (2013), Abel Tasman (Quality Road) (2017) and Monomoy Girl (Tapizar) (2018) to double up in the Acorn.
Sheikh Mohammed's operation also won this race last year with Matareya (Pioneerof the Nile).
“What's funny is that in the blink of an eyelid, when Todd's [Pletcher] filly [Munnys Gold] kind of backed up, she was in front [and] I was worried because she will idle a little bit, like she did in the [Kentucky] Oaks and she did it again today,” winning trainer Brendan Walsh said. “She's just a great filly. It's unbelievable and such an honor to have her for the people we have her [for]. I think she'll get better and better as the year goes on. She's still got a bit of furnishing to do. We still have a little ways to go.”
Pretty Mischievous, a winner of her first two starts sprinting at Churchill Downs last fall, suffered her first career defeat finishing third in the GII Golden Rod S. beneath the Twin Spires Nov. 26. The bay enjoyed a fantastic winter at the Fair Grounds, annexing her first two career stakes victories in the Untapable S. Dec. 26 and the GII Rachel Alexandra S. Feb. 18. She looked primed for a third straight win in the GII Fair Grounds Oaks, but, after hitting the front in the stretch, reported home a well-beaten second. She was making her first start with blinkers for Walsh on the first Friday in May.
Winning jockey Tyler Gaffalione added, “I'm just so proud of her. She's really developed into an amazing filly. She seems to just be getting bigger and stronger with each race. I can't wait for the day she finishes out one of her races. She gets to the lead and she kind of waits. She just has so much talent. I don't think we've seen the best of her yet.”
He continued, “I think the blinkers have really helped her because before when we made the lead, she would just go to a complete stop. At least now you're getting a little bit more out of her.”
Pretty Mischievous is one of 130 black-type winners bred in the Northern Hemisphere by Into Mischief, who also has 64 graded winners, 17 at the top level. The super sire cross of Into Mischief over Tapit is also responsible for GSW Hoosier Philly, a recent second in the GII Black-Eyed Susan S., and GSW Rocket Can, ninth in the GI Kentucky Derby. Pretty Mischievous is the second foal out of 2016 GI Spinaway S. winner Pretty City Dancer, who is a half-sister to GI Gazelle S. winner Lear's Princess (Lear Fan). Stroud Coleman Bloodstock acquired Pretty City Dancer on behalf of Godolphin for $3.5 million at the 2018 Fasig-Tipton November Sale while she was carrying her first foal, now the winning 4-year-old Medaglia d'Oro filly named Ornamental. The mare was barren to Uncle Mo for 2021, but has a Medaglia d'Oro yearling filly and a Street Sense filly born Mar. 28.
Friday, Belmont Park
ACORN S. PRESENTED BY GREAT JONES DISTILLING CO.-GI, $500,000, Belmont, 6-9, 3yo, f, 1 1/16m, 1:43.33, ft.
1–PRETTY MISCHIEVOUS, 123, f, 3, by Into Mischief
1st Dam: Pretty City Dancer (GISW, $286,344), by Tapit
2nd Dam: Pretty City, by Carson City
3rd Dam: Pretty Special, by Riverman
'TDN Rising Star'. O/B-Godolphin (KY); T-Brendan P. Walsh;
J-Tyler Gaffalione. $275,000. Lifetime Record: 8-6-1-1,
$1,481,560. Werk Nick Rating: A+++. *Triple Plus*
Click for the eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree.
Click for the free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree.
2–Dorth Vader, 120, f, 3, by Girvin
1st Dam: Hardcore Candy (SP, $101,308), by Yonaguska
2nd Dam: Its a Girl, by Thunder Gulch
3rd Dam: Ladyago, by Northern Dancer
1ST G1 BLACK TYPE. O-John Ropes; B-John Ropes (FL);
T-George Weaver. $100,000.
3–Occult, 118, f, 3, by Into Mischief
1st Dam: Magical Feeling (GSW & GISP, $554,532), by Empire Maker
2nd Dam: Magical Mood (GB), by Forestry
3rd Dam: Good Mood, by Devil's Bag
1ST GRADED BLACK TYPE, 1ST G1 BLACK TYPE. ($625,000 Ylg
'21 KEESEP). O-Alpha Delta Stables, LLC; B-Peter E. Blum
Thoroughbreds, LLC (KY); T-Chad C. Brown. $60,000.
Margins: HD, 4, HF. Odds: 1.90, 11.30, 27.50.
Also Ran: Munnys Gold, Accede, Randomized, Frosty O Toole, Goodgirl Badhabits.
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