Skye Diamonds and jockey Tiago Pereira win the Grade II, $ 200,000 Great Lady M Stakes, Saturday, July 8, 2017 at Los Alamitos Race Course, Cypress CA.© BENOIT PHOTO
Tom Acker, Allen Racing and Bloom Racing Stable’s Skye Diamonds finally got clear in the long stretch at Los Alamitos to win Saturday’s G2 Great Lady M Stakes by nearly two lengths. A 4-year-old daughter of First Dude ridden by Tiago Pereira and trained by William Spawr, the filly covered 6 1/2 furlongs over the fast main track in 1:14.79.
“She was a 3-year-old and she was a trier was why we decided to claim her (for $ 40,000 last Aug. 27),” said Spawr. “We had been watching her a little bit before we claimed her and it has definitely worked out. I could have never imagined this (winning a Grade II) when we first claimed her. We started working her on the training track (at Santa Anita) and she loved it. She started running the last quarter in, believe me, 22 and change, not 23 or 24 (seconds). That’s when we kind of knew this was a good filly. The day she won an optional claimer (Feb. 16) in (1:08.91) I was in awe.”
The speedy Constellation took out for the lead with a three-quarter length advantage over Pretty N Cool through fractions of :22.26 and :44.64, while Skye Diamonds and the heavily favored Finest City tracked in third and fourth. Rounding the far turn, those four drew even across the track as they battled for the lead. Skye Diamonds and Constellation proved best of those, but it was Skye Diamonds who came flying for the win in the final sixteenth of a mile. Constellation finished second, and Finest City was up for third.
“My filly has speed, but I wanted to sit off (Constellation and Pretty N Cool),” Pereira said. “I moved when (favored Finest City) moved and she was very strong in the stretch.”
Bred in California by Dizney Double Diamond, Skye Diamonds was claimed from owner Donald Dizney for $ 40,000 in August of 2016. She has not finished worse than second since being claimed, and the Great Lady M is her first graded stakes win. Overall, Skye Diamonds has won eight of her 15 starts for earnings of nearly $ 450,000.
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