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2011 Juddmonte Spinster and Bourbon Stakes

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Aruna wins the 2011 Juddmonte Spinster Stakes
Aruna wins the 2011 Juddmonte Spinster Stakes

Aruna wins the 2011 Juddmonte Spinster Stakes at Keeneland

© Steve Queen
October 9, 2011

There were 2 graded stakes races on the first Sunday of the Keeneland fall meeting. The feature race on the card was the $500,000 Juddmonte Spinster Stakes (G1), a Breeders' Cup Challenge "Win and You're In" event for the Breeders' Cup Ladies' Classic. A field of 12 older fillies and mares went 1 1/8 miles on the Polytrack, with All Along (G3) winner Aruna sent off as the 2-1 favorite, off her second place finish in the Diana (G1) at Saratoga. In to challenge her included 5-2 second choice Pachattack, second in the Personal Ensign (G1) last out, and 5-1 third choice Stars to Shine, off a third place finish in the Canadian (G2) at Woodbine.

Jockey Jesus Castanon sent 8-1 Embur's Song to the lead first time past the stands and she set fractions of 23.39, 46.41, and 1:10.76 while as many as 1 1/2 lengths ahead of 13-1 Tapitsfly stalking her in second. Entering the lane, Tapitsfly tired badly to eventually finish last, while Aruna, who was 7th down the backstretch, moved up to pass Embur's Song to gain a short lead with 3/16 to go. Embur's Song also tired, but Pachattack, 5th early, put in a late rally of her own. Aruna held her off to win by 1/2 a length in 1:47.88. It was another 1 1/4 length back to 27-1 La Gran Bailadora third.

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