Marethon Stable’s favored Eastern Starlett set all the pace in a Colonial Downs $15,000 maiden special weight hurdle on Sunday, June 17, and easily held off Nightswimming for a 2 1/4-length victory. William Backer’s Lonesome finished third in the 2 1/4-mile race over ten fences for fillies and mares. Sent off as the 3.30-1 pick over Lonesome, Eastern Starlett ran the distance in 4:13.40 on firm turf.
Trained by Arch Kingsley Jr., Eastern Starlett went to the lead immediately under Willie McCarthy and was shadowed for the first mile by Uptown, who faded on the final circuit and handed the second spot to Irv Naylor’s Nightswimming and jockey Ross Geraghty. Eastern Starlett led by three lengths at the final fence and held off Nigthswimming to the finish line.
Eastern Starlett began her hurdle career with a good second behind Quiet Flaine in a maiden race at the Carolina Cup Steeplechase in Camden, S.C., on March 31. Quiet Flaine came back to win the $50,000 Margaret Currey Henley at Nashville’s Iroquois Steeplechase on May 12. In her second start over fences, Eastern Starlett was second in an open maiden race at the Queen’s Cup Steeplechase near Charlotte, N.C., on April 28.
In the afternoon’s second steeplechase race, a $10,000 open claimer, S. Bruce Smart Jr.’s New Mambo pulled away to a ten-length victory over Call Me Sonny. Jeff Murphy rose the winner for trainer Jimmy Day.