Picked up for $625,000 by Alpha Delta Stables LLC out of the 2021 Keeneland September Yearling Sale, Occult missed out in fourth on her debut at Belmont's Aqueduct meeting Sept. 17 but returned at one mile to break her maiden in style by 4 1/4 lengths to finish her juvenile season Dec. 18. The 7-5 choice for her first try against stakes company, Occult had a sharp beginning but was outrun into the first turn by Sweetest Princess (Cairo Prince) to her outside. Patiently handled by jockey Dylan Davis in second, Occult settled nicely and held that position up the backstretch even as the field began to bunch up around her in pursuit of Sweetest Princess. Asked for her run as she passed the quarter pole just outside of the leader, Occult drove by with over a furlong to run and was much the best late, winning geared down by a clear margin. The win gives the filly 20 points on the road to the Kentucky Oaks.
“She had a beautiful trip,” said winning trainer Chad Brown. “I thought we were maybe the lone speed in race, and I talked to Dylan [Davis] this morning and thought we could come out of there and get the lead, but that other horse [No. 4, Sweetest Princess] showed so much interest and was adamant up there on the lead. I thought Dylan used great judgement to just secure that second stalking spot out in the clear. From there, it seemed like she was always traveling well and she had the jump on the other two main competition in the race right behind her. I was really pleased with the filly's effort and Dylan's heads-up ride.”
BUSANDA S., $97,000, Aqueduct, 1-14, 3yo, f, 1 1/8m, 1:54.78, gd.
1–OCCULT, 120, 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
($625,000 Ylg '21 KEESEP). 1ST BLACK TYPE WIN. O-Alpha
Delta Stables, LLC; B-Peter E. Blum Thoroughbreds, LLC (KY);
T-Chad C. Brown; J-Dylan Davis. $55,000. Lifetime Record:
3-2-0-0, $107,450. *1/2 to Magical (Tapit), SW, $164,550;
Exulting (Tapit), MSW, $687,370.
2–Gambling Girl, 120, f, 3, Dialed In–Tulipmania,
by Empire Maker. ($200,000 Ylg '21 SARAUG). O-Repole
Stable; B-Gallagher's Stud (NY); T-Todd A. Pletcher. $20,000.
3–Affirmative Lady, 120, f, 3, Arrogate–Stiffed,
by Stephen Got Even. ($210,000 Ylg '21 KEESEP; $400,000
2yo '22 OBSAPR). O-AMO Racing USA; B-Alastar Thoroughbred
Co, LLC (KY); T-H. Graham Motion. $12,000.
Margins: 3 3/4, 3 1/4, NO. Odds: 1.40, 3.75, 1.90.
Also Ran: Sweetest Princess, Aniston.