The trotting filly overcame traffic trouble to win the Filly Futurity at odds of 27-1 for Andy and Julie Miller, the Pinske family, Kentuckiana Racing Stable and Daniel Plouffe.
quotes by James Platz / story by Dave Briggs
Love A Good Story wrote one heck of a yarn Sunday (Oct. 11) at Red Mile, winning the 55th edition of the $255,000 Kentucky Filly Futurity at odds of 27-1.
The daughter of Chapter Seven—Celebrity Lovin was driven to victory by Andy Miller for trainer Julie Miller and owners Pinske Stable, Kentuckiana Racing Stable and Daniel Plouffe. Pinske Stables also won the $440,000 Kentucky Futurity with Amigo Volo.
Love A Good Story survived first-turn traffic trouble and marched with the outer flow before uncorking a furious stretch drive to win in 1:51.2 in a tight finish over Hypnotic AM and Sorella, both finishing three-quarters of a length behind the winner. Next Level Stuff finished fourth.
Andy Miller said he thought the race was setting up well for Love A Good Story at the top of the stretch, “but I didn’t know how much finish a couple of the others had, but I knew (she) still had quite a bit of go.”
Carried three wide into the first turn, Love A Good Story eventually landed two wide to a :27 first quarter set by Panem. Hypnotic AM pushed from post 10 for the lead but yielded for the pocket as Sorella marched for the front up the backstretch. Once Sorella, cleared, 3-5 favorite Ramona Hill ranged uncovered towards the top but soon lost stride approaching a :54 half.
Sister Sledge carried the outer tier to the final turn with Crucial second over and Love A Good Story third over. Sorella continued to lead by three-quarters in 1:23.1 while Sister Sledge lost ground, Hypnotic AM pulled out of the pocket and Love A Good Story swung to the center of the track. Hypnotic AM dug into Sorella to take a slight lead into the eighth pole but Love A Good Story came charging past the dueling leaders in the final yards.
“When (Ramona Hill) made the break, it changed the whole outlook of the race,” Andy said.
Ramona Hill, trained by Tony Alagna, won the Hambletonian against the boys in August, but had a less-than-memorable fortnight in Lexington.
“That’s horse racing,” Alagna said. “Sometimes good, sometimes bad. I don’t know that she gets over this track as good as I’d like. Last year, even when she won, she wasn’t her best. But, we took a shot and it didn’t work out so we’ll regroup for the Breeders Crown.
Returning $56.60 to win, Love A Good Story nabbed her sixth win from 10 starts this season and her 13thfrom 20 overall, earning $671,634. The filly, bred by Celebrity Farms of New York, was purchased for $90,000 at the 2018 Lexington Selected Yearling Sale.
The victory proved to be a special celebration for the Miller family and the Pinske family that have been friends for decades.
“We’ve been family friends forever, since way back,” said Carter Pinske, nephew of the late trainer Brian Pinske.
“My uncle, that passed away, was good friends with Julie and Andy and we’ve always had the same taste in horses and kind of a similar style,” Pinske said. “When my grandpa (Tim) wasn’t able to go to the east coast anymore, we started sending horses to (the Millers) and we’ve always had a great connection that way and we’ve always had luck with them.”
Andy said the Pinskes, “are great family friends. I knew Brian years ago and it’s just awesome (to win this with them).”
Pinkse said Love A Good Story is, “just a solid, solid filly. She’s overcome a few issues that she had down in Florida… to work through that and then go to New York and ship everywhere, she just shows up every week. She didn’t have good luck again in the (New York Sires Stakes) final, but bounced back here… Last week, she got away in the back and came home like mad and this week, to do the same thing again, I mean, she just shows her grit.”
The 55th Kentucky Filly Futurity was presented by the Father Patrick Syndicate and Diamond Creek Farm.
— with files from Ray Cotolo for Red Mile