Army Wife, forced to sit patiently around the final turn waiting for running room, responded strongly when daylight opened up and rolled through the stretch to capture the Grade 2, $250,000 Black-Eyed Susan Stakes on Friday at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore.
Trainer Mike Maker was happy to see Army Wife finally find some good fortune.
“She had been a hard-luck horse,” he said. “Her whole career it seems like always something happens. But today, it worked out great.”
Maker also trains Pimlico Special winner Last Judgment, making Friday a very big day.
“The Pimlico Special and this race were something I always wanted to win since I was a kid,” Maker said following the Black-Eyed Susan. “(I’m) very fortunate.”
Jockey Joel Rosario knew he had a talented filly in Army Wife.
“She’s a really nice horse — it seemed like she was getting really good over the track,” he said. “One point she looked around a little bit, but she was really great after that.”
The 9-2 third choice, Army Wife ran the 1 1/8 miles in 1:49.63, paid $11 to win and was followed across the line by Willful Woman, 2 3/4 lengths back, and Lady Traveler.
The post-time favorite, Bob Baffert-trained Beautiful Gift, was seventh.
–Field Level Media