Kept out of Breeders', Jostle cruises in Selima

Servis' filly puts virus, Laurel field behind her

November 08, 1999|By Pete Bielski | Pete Bielski,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

Trainer John Servis insists he would not have been out of place taking his filly Jostle to the Breeders' Cup gathering Saturday at Gulfstream Park.

But a virus forced him to put his prize filly on the sideline and send her to Laurel Park for yesterday's $100,000 Grade III Selima Stakes. It was bad news for the rest of the field.

The Philadelphia-based trainer watched with satisfaction as Jostle coasted to a 4 1/2-length victory, her third in four lifetime starts. She covered the 1 1/8 miles in 1 minute, 52.16 seconds.

"There's no difference between them and her," said Servis, comparing his filly to those that ran for Saturday's $1 million jackpot. "She just got a little sick. In reality, it was probably the best thing for her. It's given her a chance to grow up.

"Early in her career, she was big and gawky and had a lot of growing up to do. She's doing it."

She looked efficient in running by pacesetter and favored Dawn Princess. With Mark Johnston aboard setting a modest pace, Dawn Princess maintained a slight advantage entering the turn for home. But Jostle, with Stewart Elliott keeping her near the pace throughout, unleashed a stronger stretch run.

"When I came up to the other horse, I wasn't asking her to do anything and I thought I'd cruise by," Elliott said. "But I really had to get into her a little bit before she kicked in."

Jostle paid $6.80 and keyed a $20.40 exacta.

It was the second straight stakes win for Jostle. She won the $100,000 Drummond Stakes in Delaware last month, taking a similar route to Scottish Halo, who won Saturday's $100,000 Laurel Futurity after an October stakes win at Delaware Park.

Jostle was purchased by Richard Porter out of the yearling sale at Saratoga last year for about $100,000. The daughter of Brocco has lifetime earnings of $142,000.

Her setback was in her debut, an August sprint at Delaware Park.

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