Double Sixes holds pace this time for Distaff win

May 15, 1994|By Kent Baker | Kent Baker,Sun Staff Writer

The last time Double Sixes ran against many of the same rivals, she relaxed on the lead . . . too much.

So, after a two-length loss to Mz. Zill Bear two weeks ago, trainer Jimmy Murphy decided it would be best to keep the filly just off the pace in the $200,000 Pimlico Distaff yesterday.

Jockey Edgar Prado complied and Double Sixes overtook front-running Buffels at the head of the stretch, then held off the closers for a 1 3/4 -length victory in the Grade III event.

"We thought we'd try something different," said Prado. "The last time we went to the lead and she didn't finish well. Mr. Murphy said not to do that, and I tried to follow instructions.

"When I hit her a couple of times, she really responded."

Murphy said the pace Double Sixes set in the previous meeting, an allowance prep for the Distaff, was 1:15 for six furlongs, considerably slower than the 1:13.3 she ran yesterday.

"She just fell asleep last time, just loped along on the lead and didn't pick the bit up," said Murphy. "Edgar gave here a really good ride today."

Broad Gains, the betting favorite, rallied to overtake Mz. Zill Bear by a neck for second. Buffels, tiring in the stretch, finished fourth.

Both Jo Jo Ladner, who rode Broad Gains, and Steve Hamilton, aboard Mz. Zill Bear, said quicker early fractions would have helped their horses.

"I felt I had the best horse, but there was not much pace," said Ladner. "The front-runners finished up running well. But I just didn't get the job done."

Hamilton said he thought Mz. Zill Bear settled in nicely, but also cited a big weight advantage [six pounds] to the winner.

"My filly ran her race, but the fractions were slow," said Hamilton

Mz. Zill Bear's trainer, Ron Cartwright, also said, "The weights were the difference. I think that had something to do with it."

Murphy will give Double Sixes a rest, then ship her to Saratoga or Monmouth Park for future races.

"Anyplace where there's money," he said.

Confusion in the 5th

A controversy developed in the fifth race yesterday when Raptor, the outside horse in a field of nine, never got out of the gate and thus did not officially run.

During the loading procedure, Raptor started to walk in and then turned to back out.

"Just as the horse turned, he [the starter] fired it," said steward John Heisler.

"It was just one of those things that happen."

The stewards flashed the inquiry sign immediately after the race, won by favored No Sneaker.

Raptor was declared a nonstarter.


Double triple wagering was called off with $665.40 being returned to seven live ticket-holders from the first half. All tickets involving Raptor in other bets, including the triple, were refunded. "This has happened to all starters at one time or another," said Pimlico-Laurel general manager John Mooney. "At least this horse was in the gate at one time." . . . Head starter Jimmy Havens was attending his son's graduation and was not at the track yesterday. Assistant starter Bobby Sydnor was in charge.

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