4YO Filly Becomes Stakes Winner in 2nd North American Start
LAUREL, MD – Juddmonte homebred Whitebeam, an English-bred filly narrowly beaten in her North American debut last month, split horses in mid-stretch and went on to a 2 ½-length victory in Saturday’s $100,000 Gallorette (G3) presented by Pepsi Zero Sugar at historic Pimlico Race Course.
The 72nd running of the 1 1/16-mile Gallorette for fillies and mares 3 and up on the grass was the third of 10 stakes, six graded, worth $2.75 million in purses headlined by the 148th Preakness Stakes (G1), Middle Jewel of the Triple Crown.
Ridden by Irad Ortiz Jr., Whitebeam ($3.60) finished up in 1:41.67 over a firm turf course to give trainer Chad Brown his second straight Gallorette triumph and fifth overall following Zagora (2012), Pianist (2013), Watsdachances (2015) and Technical Analysis (2022).
Whitebeam, second by a neck in the mile Plenty of Grace April 16 at Aqueduct, saved ground while covered up by Ortiz trailing Traffic Song and Vergara through splits of 23.62 and 48.68 seconds with Princess Theorem to her outside. Ortiz split Vergara and Princess Theorem once straightened for home, and they steadily gained separation approaching the wire.
Sopran Basilea, an Irish-bred mare making her North American debut, emerged from a tight pack a neck ahead of Graham Motion-trained stablemate Bipartisanship for second, with Princess Theorem another nose back in fourth. Vergara, Traffic Song and Eminent Victor, also trained by Brown, completed the order of finish.
Whitebeam raced six times in Europe, stringing together three straight wins last spring and summer. She was moved to Brown after finishing ninth in the Prix de Saint-Cyr last October at Longchamp in France.
Gallorette retired in 1948 as the world’s leading money-winning mare, with earnings of $445,535. She won 21 of 72 starts and placed in 39 stakes, capturing the 1945 Pimlico Oaks and being named champion handicap mare of 1946. She was elected to the National Museum of Racing’s Hall of Fame in 1962.
$100,000 Gallorette (G3) Quotes
Winning Trainer Chad Brown (Whitebeam, Eminent Victor, 5th): “She’s trained super since she came in to me over the winter from Juddmonte. I was actually very surprised she got beat the last time. She had an outside post in a short field and she kind of got jammed up off a slow pace, wide, pulling the whole way and just missed. It was sloppy trip. She came out of that and trained brilliantly. It was really pointing toward this race. I think getting on the faster, firmer turf is really going to be beneficial for her. She just loved it out there today.”
Flavien (Prat) said [Eminent Victor] had a nightmare trip. She was behind my other one and kept checking the whole way. He said to just draw a line through it.”
Winning Jockey Irad Ortiz Jr. (Whitebeam): “Beautiful trip. She broke so good, broke on top actually. I let her go into the first turn to get position. I took a hold of her, and she came back to me right away. So, I just waited for the time to go, and she came on really well. She’s a nice one.”
Trainer Graham Motion (Sopran Basilea, 2nd , Bipartisanship, 3rd , Vergara, 5th): “They ran well. I was very happy with them. Very encouraging for the European filly (Sopran Basilea) first time over here. Vergara was a little disappointing. But it was always a question coming off the layoff.”
Jockey Javier Castellano (Sopran Basilea, 2nd) : “I’m so proud of her today. She was very professional in the post parade. She came running at the end. I really liked the way she did it today.”
Jockey John Velazquez (Bipartisanship, 3rd): “Got to the first turn and everybody was checking back. We sat there and waited to the quarter pole to squeeze between horses, and then she came running nicely. Seems like the longer distance will suit her good.”