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2012 Joe Hirsch Turf Classic and Flower Bowl Invitational

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Nahrain wins the 2012 Flower Bowl Invitational
Nahrain wins the 2012 Flower Bowl Invitational

Nahrain wins the 2012 Flower Bowl Invitational at Belmont Park

© Vanessa Ng
The $600,000 Flower Bowl Invitational (G1) featured a field of 8 older fillies and mares going 1 1/4 miles over the inner turf course at Belmont Park looking for an automatic entry into the Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Turf. Dream Peace was sent off as the 2-1 favorite off her runner-up finish in the Diana (G1) at Saratoga. In to challenge her included 3-1 second choice Zagora, winner of the Ballston Spa (G2) and Gallorette Handicap (G3), and 7-2 third choice I'm A Dreamer, off her win in the Beverly D (G1) at Arlington.

Jockey Javier Castellano sent 8-1 Hit It Rich to the lead first time by and she set easy fractions of 25.33, 51.73, 1:17.43, and 1:41.69 over the yielding course, while pressed by 14-1 Halo Dolly and 43-1 Bizzy Caroline. Entering the stretch, the pacesetters tired as Zagora moved up to gain the lead at the 3/16 pole. 5-1 Nahrain, fifth early, came through between horses at the 1/16 pole to win by 1/2 a length over Zagora in 2:05.56. It was just a nose back to late-running favorite Dream Peace third. There was a stewards' inquiry focusing on bumping at the top of the stretch but the result stood.

Results chart

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