With Elvis Trujillo giving her a masterful rail-skimming ride, Mystic Love defeated a field of males in Saturday’s $100,000 Dania Beach Stakes at Gulfstream Park.
Mystic Love, at 16-1, took the lead entering the stretch and held off even-money favorite Charming Kitten to win by a half-length in the one-mile turf stakes for 2-year-olds.
Mystic Love was the only filly in the Dania Beach’s 10-horse field. It was the first race in her four-race career that was longer than six furlongs and her first away from Laurel Park in Laurel, Md.
“We beat the boys, but I don’t know if we’ll go against them again,” said Jessica Campitelli, the trainer of Mystic Love.
Instead, she and owner John Davison chose the Dania Beach because they wanted a mile race, rather than 11/16 miles, for Mystic Love’s first test around two turns.
Mystic Love came into the Dania Beach after a win in the Selima Stakes on Oct. 27 at Laurel Park, at 5 1/2 furlongs on turf for fillies. Trujillo rode her in that race and her other two starts — a win and a fifth-place finish.
In the Dania Beach, Tate’s Landing led Reporting Star by a length after a half-mile in 49.41 seconds. Mystic Love was third, another two lengths back and near the rail.
Trujillo found an opening for Mystic Love after Tate’s Landing tired and began drifting outside entering the stretch.
Mystic Love won in 1:38.81 on the course listed as good. Newfound Zapper finished third, and Tate’s Landing faded to eighth.
“It was a perfect trip. I saw in the program there was one horse with speed, so I sat behind,” Trujillo said. “At the three-eighths pole we had a little room, and it was time for us to go. This is a very nice horse.”
Campitelli said she expects that Mystic Love will race next on Jan. 27 in the $100,000 Sweetest Chant Stakes, at one mile on turf for 3-year-old fillies.
Mystic Love is a Maryland-bred daughter of Not for Love.
In Saturday’s last six races, Mystic Love was one of four winners at 12-1 or higher — producing some big payoffs and some carryovers.
The Pick Four paid $50,84010 for a $1 bet.
No bettors had all of the winners in the Pick Five or in the Pick Six. Thus, there will be large carryovers for each bet Sunday.
For the Pick Five, with a minimum 50-cent bet, the carryover is $80,608.
For the Pick Six, a 10-cent-only bet, the carryover is $70,160.
In both wagers, bettors can have multiple horses per race.
On Sunday, Gulfstream will have the $100,000 Harlan’s Holiday Stakes at 1 1/16 miles on dirt for 3-year-olds and up.
Delegation and Cash Rules are likely favorites in a strong nine-horse field.
Delegation finished third in the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile on Nov. 3 at Santa Anita Park. He will be making his first Gulfstream start. John Velazquez has the mount for trainer Mark Casse.
Cash Rules won five stakes at Calder this year.
David Fawkes trains Cash Rules and Duke of Mischief, a multiple graded-stakes winner.
They will run as separate betting entities.
The Harlan’s Holiday also has Ducduc and Csaba, who finished in a dead heat in the 1 1/8 mile Carl G. Rose Classic at Calder on Nov. 24.
Breakfast and tour
Gulfstream again this year is holding Breakfast at Gulfstream every Saturday from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. in the tiki bar area several hundred yards north of the finish line.
The cost is $8 per person for breakfast and a tour of Gulfstream’s backside barn area with Sandy Bruno, an assistant to trainer Phil Gleaves. Fans also can watch horses working out on the track.
Bruno is the hostess for the event and will have jockeys and trainers as guests each week.