Songbird: has not been beaten in nine career starts
PICTURE: Wendy Wooley/EquiSport
By David Baxter 8:28AM 25 JUL 2016
Report: USA, Sunday
Saratoga: Coaching Club American Oaks Stakes (Grade 1) 1m1f, dirt, 3yo fillies
SHE faced her first serious test, but Songbird (Jerry Hollendorfer/Mike Smith) still had all the answers as she extended her unbeaten run to nine.
Last seasons’s champion juvenile filly missed the Kentucky Oaks through illness before warming up for the CCA in a Grade 2 at Santa Anita last month.
At a course known as the ‘Graveyard of Champions’ Songbird was given a serious examination by Carina Mia, but her class shone through in the straight as she cleared away by five-and-a-quarter lengths.
Carina Mia won the Grade 1 Acorn Stakes last time out, and Julien Leparoux served it up to Songbird on the home bend, but despite being level at the top of the stretch, he was left trailing.
Winning jockey Smith said: “I asked her more than I’ve ever had to. I take my hat off to Carina Mia. She made her run a little bit. But once I got going, I was comfortable.”
Hollendorfer added: “We thought we were going to get tested and we thought (jockey) Julien would send (Carina Mia) at us early, which he did. We got a chance to test our filly and she dug in.”