Interstatedaydream and Florent Geroux after winning the Black-Eyed Susan Stakes at Pimlico Race Course.
Interstatedaydream struck at the right time after a trip just off the pace, and she kicked on to earn her first graded stakes victory on Friday in the Grade 2 Black-Eyed Susan Stakes at Pimlico Race Course.
The 3-year-old filly from the first crop of Classic Empire left the starting gate on a loose rein by jockey Florent Geroux, and the pair settled in second, a length off early leader Beguine. Interstatedaydream was flanked by Divine Huntress on the rail and post time favorite Adare Manor on the outside.
Those four led the proceedings past the grandstand for the first time, and through an opening quarter in :23.34, and that group remained the field’s top flight as they rounded the first turn and entered the backstretch. Beguine continued to lead after clocking the opening half-mile in :46.65, with Interstatedaydream close behind, about three paths off the rail. Geroux put Interstatedaydream on Beguine’s outside hip as the backstretch bent into the final turn, and she was within a half-length after three-quarters in 1:10.46.
Jockey Jose Ortiz continued to ride Beguine confidently under heavy pressure on the outside from Interstatedaydream, and Ortiz began asking his mount with the whip at the three-sixteenths pole. However, it was not enough to counter their rival’s momentum on the outside.
Under steady right-handed urging from Geroux, Interstatedaydream was firmly in command with a furlong to go, clocking the mile in 1:35.53, and the filly kicked away to cross the finish 1 1/4 lengths ahead of Adare Manor, who continued to run steadily on the outside. Radio Days, staging a late move from the rail, was a length behind the runner-up.
Interstatedaydream won the 1 1/8-mile Black-Eyed Susan in 1:48.73 over a fast main track. She paid $14.20 to win as the betting public’s third choice.
Friday’s race marked the first Black-Eyed Susan victory for Geroux, as well as trainer Brad Cox and owner Flurry Racing Stables.
The Black Eyed Susan improved the filly’s career record to three wins in five starts, for earnings of $351,225. It was her first graded stakes victory after a series of on-the-board efforts. After breaking her maiden in June of her 2-year-old season in 2021, she finished second in the G2 Adirondack Stakes before being put away for the year. She came back with a March optional claiming score at Oaklawn Park, then finished third in the Grade 1 Ashland Stakes at Keeneland prior to her start at Pimlico.
Interstatedaydream was bred in Ontario by William D. Graham, out of the Uncle Mo mare Babcock, whose runners also include the multiple stakes-placed Emmeline.
Friday’s winner sold at auction on three occasions. She initially brought $105,000 as a newly-turned yearling at the 2020 Keeneland January Horses of All Ages Sale, then she sold for $130,000 later that year at the Keeneland September Yearling Sale. Finally, the filly was picked up by her current owner for $175,000 at last year’s Ocala Breeders’ Sales Co. Spring 2-Year-Olds in Training Sale.