Moonshine Memories tracked the pacesetting Alluring Star in Saturday’s $301,035 Chandelier Stakes (G1) at Santa Anita Park, took over entering the final turn and easily pulled off her third straight win from as many career starts for trainer Simon Callaghan.
Jockey Flavien Prat was in the saddle for the second straight time on the bay miss, who stalked the leader through splits of :23.03, :46.75 and 1:12.06. Once in command, Moonshine Memories easily motored home to be 2 3/4 lengths clear of 9-5 favorite Alluring Star on the wire while finishing 1 1/16 miles on the fast main track in 1:46.32.
Piedi Bianchi was the only one to make up any ground on the top two, and nearly collared Alluring Star before running out of ground late. Those two were only separated by a neck on the line. Dancing Belle followed in fourth, 9 1/4 lengths behind, while Just a Smidge, Terra’s Angel, Super Good and Holy Diver were all listed as being eased under the wire in that order.
Campaigned by John and Leslie Malone’s Bridlewood Farm, Mrs. John Magnier, Derrick Smith and Michael B. Tabor, Moonshine Memories paid $6 for the win as the 2-1 second choice. The Malibu Moon juvenile lass is now three-for-three lifetime, breaking her maiden by a length on August 19 at Del Mar and returning over that track to take the September 2 Del Mar Debutante (G1). She bumped her career earnings to $396,000.
The Chandelier is part of the “Win & You’re In” Challenge series and awarded Moonshine Memories an all-fees berth to the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (G1) on November 4 at Del Mar. It is also part of the Road to the Kentucky Oaks series of points races and endowed the top four finishers with 10-4-2-1 points toward a starting berth in next year’s Kentucky Oaks (G1).
Bred in Kentucky by Summer Wind Farm, Moonshine Memories is out of the Unbridled’s Song mare Unenchantedevening, making her a half-sister to Grade 2-placed stakes hero Indian Evening and stakes-placed Mo for the Money. Unenchantedevening is herself a half-sister to 1997 Horse of the Year and champion two-year-old colt Favorite Trick.
Flavien Prat, jockey Moonshine Memories, winner
“I had a great trip. She’s learned to relax, so that’s great. She broke well, she sat off the pace, dropped the bit and relaxed well today. When I made my move, she was all there.
“(Trainer) Simon (Callaghan) told me to break and just wait and see what the other speed was going to do but I kind of rode her the same as I did in the (Del Mar) Debutante (G1).”
Joe Talamo, jockey Alluring Star, second
“This horse took a really big step today. She was cruising right along and then the horse came to her, she put up a fight. She has a really, really bright future. We really weren’t going too fast at :46.4 and she showed me something when the horse came to her. She’s only had one race prior to today, so I’m looking forward to the future.”
Simon Callaghan, trainer Moonshine Memories, winner
“I just like the way she sat off horses and relaxed really well. That’s the key to getting these longer distances. We know she’s got speed, and she’s proven it in these two other races, but today she showed she relaxes, and that makes everyone’s job easier.
“There’s some pressure (going into the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies [G1] undefeated) when you’re training a filly like this. It’s not any added pressure, but it’s a good position to be in.”
Scott Calder, representing ownership Moonshine Memories, winner
“You’ve got to give Simon (Callaghan) all of the credit, she ran back quickly after her maiden win and won. He was thinking about training her up to the Breeders’ Cup but she was doing great, so he decided to come here and she ran just the way we’d hoped she would. She was getting tired there at the end but she deserved to be tired. They set some fast fractions and it was nice to see her just sit off the pace a little bit. She gives her all every time so you can’t ask for more than that. Fingers crossed for the Breeders’ Cup, it’s great to be associated with her, for sure.”