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Midnight Lucky crushes field in $200,000 Sunland Oaks
RSS Feeds Monday, March 25, 2013
Midnight Lucky handled her stakes debut like a seasoned pro with a runaway, track record-setting performance in Sunday's $200,000 Sunland Park Oaks. The 3-year-old filly kicked off a stakes double for Eisaman grads at the New Mexico track as Govenor Charlie took the Grade 3 Sunland Derby in the race following the Oaks.

Midnight Lucky, who like Govenor Charlie is trained by Bob Baffert and sired by co-owner Mike Pegram's two-time Breeders' Cup Sprint (G1) Midnight Lute, came into the Oaks off an ultra-impressive maiden score last month at Santa Anita, when she earned an eye-catching Beyer Speed Figure of 100.

Going two turns for the first time, Midnight Lucky wasted little time getting into the mix on Sunday. She dueled for the lead with Majestic River for the better part of six furlongs, then Rafael Bejarano pushed the “go” button, and the gray or roan filly sprinted clear with ease, coming to the wire in hand to get the 1 1/16-miles in 1:41.06, lowering the previous track mark, set by another Eisaman grad, Song of Navarone in 2009, by 0.85 seconds.

Midnight Lucky, who Pegram co-owns with Karl Watson and Paul Weitman, could be headed to the Kentucky Oaks (G1) at Churchill Downs.

"You’re always scared when you go around two turns for the first time, and when I saw that :21 flat (first quarter-mile) go up I said, ‘I hope the clock’s broken,’" said Pegram. "But she did it easily and within herself. We like her future."
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