Lauded all week as the toughest field that Rick Porter’s undefeated Songbird had yet faced, the G1 Cotillion proved facile for the sophomore daughter of Medaglia d’Oro as she glided to her 11th career victory under another hand ride from Mike Smith. Trained by Jerry Hollendorfer, Songbird covered the 1 1/16 miles over the fast main track in 1:44 flat, drawing away from Carina Mia by over five lengths on the wire.
Songbird was the quickest out of the gates, but when Carina Mia came up the rail from her inside post to take the lead, the champion filly did not falter and rated kindly just off the pace for Smith. Longshot Disco Rose took up position along the rail in third as Cathryn Sophia tracked Songbird from fourth. Through opening fractions of 23 4/5 seconds and 47 3/5 seconds, Carina Mia led Songbird by approximately three-quarters of a length down the backstretch.
Rounding the far turn, Songbird moved up under her own power to challenge Carina Mia, taking her time to draw even with the leader. Cathryn Sophia was just a length behind them in third, but Songbird and Carina Mia extended their advantage to nearly three lengths by the top of the lane. Songbird straightened out just a hair in front of Carina Mia, and though she was tardy changing leads, her victory was never in question as she powered away through the stretch under a hand ride. Songbird passed under the wire over five lengths in front of a very game Carina Mia, with Cathryn Sophia laboring home in third. Land Over Sea was fourth.
Bred in Kentucky by John Antonelli, Songbird was a $ 400,000 Fasig-Tipton Saratoga Select Yearling Sale purchase. The filly has dominated her competition in all 11 of her career starts, with her narrowest margin of victory recorded as 3 3/4 lengths. She has captured seven Grade 1 races for earnings of nearly $ 3.5 million, and will head to the Breeders’ Cup Distaff to take on champion Beholder in her next start.
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