Letruska (Super Saver) continued her ascension with a powerful, front-running performance in Saturday's GI Ogden Phipps S. at Belmont Park, a 'Win and You're In' for the GI Breeders' Cup Distaff.
The bay was backed as the 6-5 favorite in this scratched-down field of five after posting a heart-stopping victory over the brilliant Monomoy Girl (Tapizar) in the GI Apple Blossom H. Apr. 17.
With Jose Ortiz subbing for his sidelined brother Irad Ortiz, Jr. once again here, Letruska seized the early advantage and was tracked by last year's GI Kentucky Oaks and last out GI La Troienne S. heroine Shedaresthedevil (Daredevil) through fractions of :23.49 and :46.76. The pride of Mexico began to let it out a notch rounding the far turn, hit the top of the stretch in complete command and was never seriously threatened en route to a convincing tally.
Bonny South (Munnings) tagged her aforementioned Brad Cox-trained stablemate for second.
“This is back-to-back Grade I wins,” winning trainer Fausto Gutierrez said. “She showed her potential. This is a speed horse that can run long distances. Today, she confirmed what we saw in the Apple Blossom. She's progressed with age and taking the blinkers off. She ran like a big horse.
He continued, “When she would run on the lead, she never saw the other horses. She has improved so much more. She has this class to her. She really likes to run. Now, we need to focus on the Breeders' Cup with the form that we have. These races are really tough. We'll check how she does. She's a very sound filly and I hope she continues like this.”
Letruska began her career with six straight victories in Mexico, including a pair of Group 1 tallies. She was tabbed as the country's champion 3-year-old filly of 2019.
Her U.S. campaign has so far also included victories in Gulfstream's Copa 2019 Invitacional del Caribe S., Saratoga's GIII Shuvee S. last summer, Gulfstream's GIII Rampart S. Dec. 12 and Sam Houston's GIII Houston Ladies Classic S. Jan. 31. She came up just a head short of Shedaresthedevil in the GII Azeri S. Mar. 13.
Letruska, purchased in utero for $100,000 at KEENOV in 2015, is one of five Grade I winners for the expatriated Super Saver. Successful Appeal is also the broodmare sire of GI Belmont S. winner Tapwrit (Tapit) and a total of 11 graded winners. Letruska is one of three black-type performers for her Grade II-placed dam, a full-sister to Grade I winner J P's Gusto and a half-sister to Kid Majic (Lemon Drop Kid), the dam of two-time Sovereign Award winner and GSW Miss Mischief (Into Mischief) and MSP Mind Out (Tapit). Letruska's third dam produced Pacific Spell (Langfuhr), whose daughter Proud Spell (Proud Citizen) won the 2008 GI Kentucky Oaks en route to an Eclipse Award. Magic Appeal is the dam of the 2-year-old colt Ocotzingo (Hard Spun), a yearling colt by Arrogate and had a filly by Malibu Moon this year.
OGDEN PHIPPS S.-GI, $480,000, Belmont, 6-5, 4yo/up, f/m, 1 1/16m, 1:41.25, ft.
1–LETRUSKA, 122, m, 5, by Super Saver
1st Dam: Magic Appeal (GSP), by Successful Appeal
2nd Dam: Call Her Magic, by Caller I. D.
3rd Dam: Malibu Magic, by Encino
O-St. George Stable LLC; B-St. George Stables, LLC (KY);
T-Fausto Gutierrez; J-Jose L. Ortiz. $275,000. Lifetime Record:
Ch. 3yo Filly-Mex, 19-14-1-1, $1,432,319. *1/2 to Trigger
Warning (Candy Ride (ARG)), MSW & GISP, $555,378. Werk
Nick Rating: A. Click for the eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree.
2–Bonny South, 120, f, 4, by Munnings
1st Dam: Touch the Star, by Tapit
2nd Dam: Willstar, by Nureyev
3rd Dam: Nijinsky Star, by Nijinsky II
O-Juddmonte; B-Juddmonte Farms Inc (KY); T-Brad H. Cox.
3–Shedaresthedevil, 122, f, 4, by Daredevil
1st Dam: Starship Warpspeed, by Congrats
2nd Dam: Andria's Forest, by Forestry
3rd Dam: Andriana B., by Far North
($100,000 Wlg '17 KEENOV; $20,000 RNA Ylg '18 KEESEP;
$280,000 2yo '19 KEENOV). O-Qatar Racing, Flurry Racing
Stables, LLC & Autry Lowry, Jr.; B-WinStar Farm, LLC (KY);
T-Brad H. Cox. $60,000.
Margins: 2 3/4, 1, 10 1/4. Odds: 1.20, 2.50, 1.65.
Also Ran: Queen Nekia, Water White. Scratched: Swiss Skydiver, Valiance.
Click for the Equibase.com chart, the TJCIS.com PPs or the free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree. VIDEO, sponsored by TVG.