Jennifer H. Pitts’ Green Velvet burst away to a lengthy early lead under Ross Geraghty and held off Kate Dalton’s Miss Crown to win the Fair Hill Races’ $40,000 Valentine Memorial by a length on Saturday, May 28. Bruce Miller’s Lonesome Nun finished third in the Sport of Kings filly and mare hurdle stakes at the Maryland race course, and Arcadia Stable’s Opera Heroine was fourth in a field of nine.
Trained by Jazz Napravnik, Green Velvet ran the Valentine Memorial’s 2 1/4 miles in 4:14.40 on firm turf. The Valentine Memorial was the first victory for the six-year-old Petionville mare since a front-running score in the Peapack Stakes at Far Hills, N.J., on Oct. 23. Green Velvet previously had finished third in the Margaret Currey Henley at the Iroquois Steeplechase at Nashville on May 14.