Split Time overcomes rough start to win Laurel’s Alma North Stakes

Saturday, June 16th, 2018

Jim McCue/Maryland Jockey Club

By Sarah Mace

New York invader and Linda Rice-trainee Split Time made a Saturday trip to Laurel Park well worth the effort for owner Tic Stables. The bay 3-year-old daughter of Take Charge Indy parlayed a difficult start into a driving victory to earn her first open company win and second career black type score in the $75,000 Alma North Stakes run at seven furlongs.

Winner of the Maddie May Stakes on March 24 when she split horses and got up in the final strides, Split Time had yet to finish off the board in five career starts coming into the Alma North. The owner of tactical speed as well as grit, she was sent off as the 3-1 third choice in a competitive field of six.

Split Time ended up behind the eight ball only a few strides into the race. Elevenses to her inside, the 6-5 favorite, came out at the break, bumped her hard and crossed over, pinching her back. She then spent the first half-mile at the caboose of the field, seven lengths or so off the pace. Up front, Elevenses, then Almond Roca, then Limited View led the pack through fast splits of 22.41 and 45.25.

Picking off horses in the turn two-wide, Split Time advanced to third by the head of the stretch and began to carve a path between Limited View, who went very wide coming out of the turn, and Almond Roca at the fence.

Jim McCue/Maryland Jockey Club

Powering onward and gaining the lead inside the furlong grounds, Split Time staved off a late threat by 47-1 longshot Norma’s Charm who was charging hard far out on the grandstand side, to win by a half-length, completing the 7-furlong distance in 1:24.48 over a fast main track. Norma’s Charge was followed across the line by Limited View, Almond Roca, Aggreator and Elevenses.

Jockey Horacio Karamanos focused first on the troubled start. “We got a bad break out of the gate. [Elevenses] was coming out and crossed in front of me and my filly lost her action but then she started to pick it up nice and easy.”

Continued Karamanos, “I saw they were going so fast [up] front … but she was able to give me a nice kick and kept going strong to the wire. I think if she didn’t have that kind of trouble in the beginning she could have won it easier.”

Trainer Linda Rice’s assistant Chris Sankar commented, “Every time you lead her over she gives you everything she’s got, and once again she got it done. Anytime you leave state-bred company there’s no free lunch, but she’s got the heart and the talent, and everything worked out today.”

Rice, the 2017 Laurel winter-spring meet co-champion, added in a text, “We are very pleased with her effort today. She had a troubled start but a strong finish.”

Split Time, now a winner of four races in six career starts with one second and a third has earned $195,700.

Bred by Sequel Stallions New York and foaled at Sequel’s farm in Hudson, Split Time issues from a productive New York-bred family. Her winning dam Speed Dating, out of Near and Dear, is a half-sister to multiple stakes winner and $693,500-earner Saratoga Snacks.

Speed Dating has an unnamed 2-year-old colt by freshman Sequel stallion Alpha and a yearling filly by Freud named Afreud of a Storm.

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