LEXINGTON, KY (October 13, 2012) – Jerry Frankel, Ronald Frankel, Steve Laymon and Bradley Thoroughbreds’ Dayatthespa went to the lead at the break and fended off all challengers to win the 29th running of the $400,000 Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup (G1) for 3-year-old fillies by two lengths over Centre Court before a crowd of 28,337 on Saturday afternoon at Keeneland.
Trained by Chad Brown and ridden by Javier Castellano, Dayatthespa grabbed the lead from post position eight and established a clear margin by the time the field reached the first turn. Castellano angled her to the rail and led the field through fractions of :24.52, :49.11 and 1:13.96 while receiving no pressure on the front end.
Leaving the far turn, Better Lucky and Centre Court made runs at Dayatthespa, but Castellano had more than enough filly left and kicked clear again. Dayatthespa, a New York-bred daughter of City Zip out of the Doc’s Leader mare M’Lady Doc, covered the 1 1/8 miles on a firm turf course in 1:48.99.
The victory was the second in the race for Castellano, who won the 2007 renewal with Bit of Whimsy. It was Brown’s first victory in the race.
A winner of all five starts in 2012, including the Appalachian (G3) here in April, Dayatthespa earned $240,000 with the triumph and increased her earnings to $574,892 with a record of 8-6-1-0.
Sent off as the second choice in the field of eight, Dayatthespa returned $8.60, $4.40 and $3.60. Centre Court, ridden by Julien Leparoux, paid $5.80 and $3.60 with Better Lucky, under Shaun Bridgmohan, finishing a half-length back in third and paying $6.60 to show.
Samitar (GB) finished a nose back in fourth and was followed in order by Somali Lemonade, favored Stephanie’s Kitten, Treasured Up and Tannery (IRE).
The 17-day Fall Meet continues Sunday with a nine-race program that begins at 1:05 p.m. (ET).