Midnight Bisou kept her flawless 2019 record in tact with her seventh straight victory in Saturday's GII Beldame Invitational S. at Belmont Park. Away well from her rail draw, the 1-9 chalk raced on the longshot leader Spring in the Wind (Spring At Last)'s inside hip in second through soft early splits of :24.83 and :48.09 with last term's Beldame winner Wow Cat hot on their heels in third. The dark bay drew even with the pacesetter on the backstretch and they were joined by Wow Cat on the outside entering the far turn. Spring in the Wind backed out of it immediately, leaving the top two betting choices to battle it out. Wow Cat did her best to run with Midnight Bisou in the lane, but proved no match for the divisional leader, who charged clear in the final sixteenth to register yet another decisive victory.
“You're always a little worried drawing the one-hole in short fields, but I thought Johnny [Velazquez] rode her great and did a terrific job riding her to the wire,” said Scott Blasi, assistant to winning trainer Steve Asmussen. “She proved to be the best. She's just been an amazing horse this year. The way she's developed this year, she's turned a corner going from three to four, and it's exciting. She's been training great since the Personal Ensign and hopefully we can just keep her happy going forward.”
“It was pretty easy for her,” said Hall of Famer John Velazquez, who was subbing for Mike Smith aboard Midnight Bisou. “I didn't have to do very much, just keep her out of trouble, and she did what she had to do. I didn't have to hit her or anything. I just showed her the whip, and let her know she had to run. That was it.”
Midnight Bisou kicked off what has been a perfect season so far with a victory in the GIII Houston Ladies Classic Jan. 27. Besting Elate (Medaglia d'Oro) by a length in Oaklawn's GII Azeri S. Mar. 16, she outnosed Escape Clause (Going Commando) in that venue's GI Apple Blossom H. Apr. 14 with Elate finishing third. A decisive winner over next-out GI Ballerina S. heroine Come Dancing (Malibu Moon) in Belmont's GI Ogden Phipps S. June 8, the $80,000 OBSAPR buy scored a facile victory in Monmouth's GIII Molly Pitcher S. July 20. Midnight Bisou was last seen dueling with Elate down the Saratoga stretch in the Aug. 24 GI Personal Ensign S. and came out on the winning side of a very tight photo.
Midnight Bisou is one of three Grade I winners for two-time GI Breeders' Cup Sprint hero Midnight Lute. The winner's dam 2010 GIII Florida Oaks heroine Diva Delite (Repent) was purchased by Breeze Easy for $750,000 at last year's Fasig-Tipton November sale carrying a foal by the late Pioneerof the Nile. Diva Delite has a 2-year-old colt by Warrior's Reward, just a $1,500 purchase by Dalton Lawrence at this year's OBS April Sale, and a yearling filly by Wicked Strong. She dropped a Pioneerof the Nile filly May 1 and was bred back to Triple Crown hero Justify.
Saturday, Belmont Park
BELDAME S.-GII, $291,000, Belmont, 9-28, 3yo/up, f/m, 1 1/8m, 1:48.86, ft.
1–MIDNIGHT BISOU, 123, f, 4, by Midnight Lute
1st Dam: Diva Delite (GSW, $300,067), by Repent
2nd Dam: Tour Hostess, by Tour d'Or
3rd Dam: Counsel's Gal, by High Counsel
($19,000 RNA Ylg '16 KEESEP; $80,000 2yo '17 OBSAPR).
O-Bloom Racing Stable, LLC, Madaket Stables LLC & Allen
Racing LLC.; B-Woodford Thoroughbreds, LLC (KY); T-Steven M.
Asmussen; J-John R. Velazquez. $165,000. Lifetime Record:
MGISW, 18-12-3-3, $3,410,000. Werk Nick Rating: D+. Click
for eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree.
2–Wow Cat (Chi), 123, m, 5, Lookin At Lucky–Winter Cat (Chi),
by Cat Thief. O-Peter Brant & Stud Vendaval, Inc.; B-Haras Paso
Nevado (CHI); T-Chad C. Brown. $60,000.
3–Crimson Frost, 123, m, 5, Stormy Atlantic–Rock Jasmine, by
Horse Chestnut (SAf). ($10,000 Ylg '15 KEESEP). O-Barry R.
Ostrager; B-Joe Mulholland Jr., John Mulholland & Keith
Desormeaux (KY); T-Michelle Nevin. $36,000.
Margins: 3 1/4, 5 1/4, 1. Odds: 0.15, 2.95, 38.25.
Also Ran: Another Broad, Spring in the Wind. Scratched: Vexatious. Click for the Equibase.com chart, the TJCIS.com PPs or the free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree. VIDEO, sponsored by Fasig-Tipton.