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Rocket Twentyone Wins Arlington-Washington Lassie
ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. (Sept. 10, 2011) – Perhaps jockey Eusebio Razo Jr. has a future as a fortune teller as he predicted from the first time that he rode Frank Fletcher's Rocket Twentyone that the filly would win the Grade III $100,000 Arlington-Washington Lassie at Arlington Park. The rider was proved correct when he guided the daughter of Indian Charlie to a half-length victory in the one-mile race over Polytrack.
Content to sit off the pacesetter Essence of Bubbles, who led the field through fractions of 23.45 seconds, 47.70 seconds, 1:12.51 and 1:25.38, Razo was able to let his mount make one run to wear down that rival late to prevail. The Tom Howard-trained miss covered the mile in 1:39.13.
"From the first time I got this horse, I told Mr. Howard (trainer Tom) that he was going to win the Lassie with this filly," Razo said. "I had a feeling she was special. The first time I rode her she didn't break really well, but today she left the gate in hand – nice and comfortable on the backside. I wasn't really worried about the horse in front – well I was worried, but I knew when I'd ask her she'd make her run to the end. She can run either way. She's push button."
The Lassie was just the second start for Rocket Twentyone, who broke her maiden going six furlongs at Prairie Meadows on Aug. 12. She added $57,600 to her earnings which stand at $73,365.
Essence of Bubbles held the place spot over a fast-closing Ann of the Dance.
"My filly ran a very game race," said Jozbin Santana who was aboard the runner-up. "Everything went well for her. It set up the way they wanted. We wanted the lead. She had it and down the lane she kicked in. She ran right on down to the wire."
"The trip went good," said jockey Diego Sanchez of third-place finisher Ann of the Dance. "A little more distance and she would have won."
Venetian Sonata, Always Here Too, Dream Pegasus, Yorona, Struck It Lucky and Coyote Breeze completed the order of finish.
Rocket Twentyone paid $34.80, $12.80 and $5.60. Essence of Bubbles returned $6.80 and $3.80. Ann of the Dance paid $3.80.