Kimari Runs Down Lady Rocket Late To Win Gallant Bloom

Kimari | Alysse Jacobs

Kimari (Munnings) tuned up for the GI Breeders' Cup F/M Sprint with an effortless victory in the GII Gallant Bloom S. at the Belmont at Aqueduct meet Sunday. The 3-5 favorite sat just off pacesetting Lady Rocket (Tale of the Cat) through an opening quarter in :23.55. The pacesetter looked to skip away into the stretch after a half in :46.98, but Joel Rosario was still motionless aboard Kimari. Rosario flicked his wrists at the favorite and she duly inhaled Lady Rocket and strode clear to the wire while under wraps.

“That's what you want to see, right? We were excited and this race set up beautifully for her time-wise to get from here to the Breeders' Cup,” said winning trainer Wesley Ward. “The timing gave her a couple of extra weeks [as opposed to a start in the Oct. 8 GII Thoroughbred Club of America]. She always relishes the time between starts. For her, it should work out perfect. Whether she's good enough, we'll find out.”

Rosario was impressed with Kimari's effort.

“She's special. She runs hard all the time and she ran a good race again today,” Rosario said. “She was very comfortable. She was loving what she was doing out there. For a second, I was worried the horse in front of me [Lady Rocket] would keep moving forward, but my filly kept gaining and I had a lot of confidence.”

'TDN Rising Star' Kimari returned from seven months on the sidelines to finish seventh in the GI Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint last November at Del Mar and just two days later Coolmore's M.V. Magnier signed the ticket on the filly for $2.7 million at the Fasig-Tipton November sale. She opened 2022 with an optional-claiming score at Gulfstream Mar. 3 and was third while attempting to defend her title in the GI Madison S. at Keeneland Apr. 9. She was fifth in the May 7 GI Derby City Distaff S. before getting up late for a half-length victory in the July 27 GII Honorable Miss S. at Saratoga last time out.

“She'll head back to Keeneland tomorrow,” Ward said. “It'll give her six weeks on both her and my home track, so hopefully everything works out.”

Ward continued, “A lot of things have worked out for her in her last two starts when she drew the outside. When you're last in, she bounces away from there. In the Breeders' Cup, it'll be a bigger field, so if she gets there down below, Joel will have to work his way out, so we'll see how it goes.”

Pedigree Notes:

Kimari, a daughter of graded winner Cozze Up Lady, has a yearling half-brother by Constitution who sold for $1.3 million two weeks ago at Keeneland September, and a weanling half-brother by Tiz the Law. Cozze Up Lady, who was bred to Charlatan this year, was purchased by the China Horse Club for $300,000 at the 2014 Fasig-Tipton November sale.

Sunday, Belmont The Big A
GALLANT BLOOM S.-GII, $242,500, Belmont The Big A, 9-25, 3yo/up, f/m, 6 1/2f, 1:16.58, ft.
1–KIMARI, 124, m, 5, by Munnings
                1st Dam: Cozze Up Lady (GSW, $407,169), by Cozzene
                2nd Dam: The White Lady, by Johannesburg
                3rd Dam: Maha Al Iman, by Pulpit
'TDN Rising Star'. ($152,000 Ylg '18 FTKJUL; $2,700,000 4yo '21
FTKNOV). O-Jonathan Poulin, Westerberg, Mrs. John Magnier,
Derrick Smith & Michael B. Tabor; B-China Horse Club
International Limited (KY); T-Wesley A. Ward; J-Joel Rosario.
$137,500. Lifetime Record: GISW-USA, G1SP-Eng, 16-9-2-2,
$1,118,827. Werk Nick Rating: A.
Click for the eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree. Click for the
free catalogue-style pedigree.
2–Lady Rocket, 124, m, 5, Tale of the Cat–Allons Danser, by
Eskendereya. ($27,000 Wlg '17 KEENOV; $60,000 Ylg '18
OBSOCT; $420,000 2yo '19 OBSAPR). O-Frank Fletcher Racing
Operations, Inc. & Ten Strike Racing; B-La Ciega LLC & Tale Of
The Cat Syndicate (KY); T-Brad H. Cox. $50,000.
3–Sterling Silver, 118, f, 3, Cupid–Sheet Humor, by
Distorted Humor. ($13,000 Ylg '20 FTKSEL). O-Mark T.
Anderson; B-Mallory & Karen Mort (NY); T-Thomas Albertrani.
Margins: 1 1/4, 9HF, 2. Odds: 0.60, 2.50, 6.20.
Also Ran: Cheetara (Chi), Remain Anonymous.
Click for the chart and the PPs.

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