Split Time puts exclamation point on sophomore campaign with Bay Ridge victory

Sunday, December 30th, 2018

NYRA/Chelsea Durand

By Sarah Mace

Tic Stable’s Split Time (Take Charge Indy) put an exclamation point on an otherwise excellent sophomore campaign when she came from off the pace to capture Sunday’s featured $100,000 Bay Ridge Stakes for New York-bred fillies and mares by 1 1/4 lengths.

The second betting choice in the Bay Ridge field, which was reduced to eight after the scratch of Out of Orbit, Split Time was looking for a fourth stakes win to cap a highly successful 2018 run.

Split Time broke her maiden in her first start of the year (and second career race) on January 18 going one mile at Aqueduct. A winner of four of five starts to follow, she notched stakes wins at three different racetracks, winning the one-mile Maddie May at Aqueduct in March, Laurel’s Alma North at seven panels in June and the New York Oaks at Finger Lakes in July, her first route test. She also picked up a placing in Bouwerie Stakes.

At Saratoga, Split Time was a narrowly beaten third in the Fleet Indian. Back at Belmont, in her first meeting with elders, she finished a best-of-the-rest runner-up in the Empire Distaff, which was won commandingly by Bonita Bianca, a Bay Ridge rival. Last out, on November 23, Split Time tested the deep waters of the Grade 3 Comely, where she finished midpack, which made the Bay Ridge start represent significant class relief.

Evenly out of the gate from post five to go 1 1/8 miles, Split Time was very eager to run, but placed under a snug hold by jockey Junior Alvarado, who has ridden her in six prior starts. She entered the clubhouse turn last of the eight fillies and mares while up front, heavily favored Bonita Bianca and Frostie Anne, both multiple stakes winner, tussled for the lead, with Frostie Anne prevailing in the early battle.

Still tugging away along the backstretch, Split Time advanced a couple of spots, then began to relax. When she picked the tempo back up in the approach to the far turn, she seemed more tractable and, what’s more, full of run when asked midway around bend.

Hugging the rail through the turn, Split Time glided along the fence into contention, made the lead by the quarter pole and created a two-length cushion of daylight. As the early pacesetters began to recede, the closers had the opportunity to take their own shots at Split Time.

NYRA/Coglianese Photos

No Hayne No Gayne, a Steve Asumussen-trained daughter of champion New York-bred Haynesfield, defied her 33-1 odds by racing with the vanguard throughout, and ultimately closing well from fourth into second to finish 1 1/4 lengths behind Split Time. Unbridled Adventure earned her first black type placing when she overtook Bonita Bianca to finish third another 3 1/2 lengths back. Following Bonita Bianca across the wire were Frostie Anne, Pink Twist, Held Accountable and Pride of Saratoga.

After a half-mile in 49.95, a mile in 1:41.51, the final time for nine furlongs over the “good” racetrack was 1:55.56.

Alvarado acknowledged that he and his mount did not have the easiest of trips. “It didn’t look that easy from on top of the horse, but everything worked out,” he said. “From the three-eighths pole when I asked her to run, everything opened up a little bit. It wasn’t my intention to stay on the rail. It’s been a little heavy today, but I didn’t have any other choice. I thought I had enough horse to get through on the rail and swim out and that’s what I did. When I asked her, she was there for me and made my job a little easier for me there.”

“She was pretty far back off of slow fractions, and I was a little concerned when they went 49 and 4 for the half,” trainer Linda Rice said. “I thought it was going to be hard to beat the front end. But she’s really trained well into this race and maturing nicely. She was very game today.”

Rice purchased Split Time for $62,000 at the Fasig-Tipton New York-bred preferred yearling sale. To this point in her young career, Split Time has won six races from 11 starts, with two seconds and two thirds and compiled $384,450 in earnings.

Split Time issues from a familiar Empire State family. Bred by Sequel Stallions New York and foaled at Sequel’s farm in Hudson, she is out of New York-bred winner Speed Dating (Not For Love), bred by Mrs. Joanne Nielsen. Speed Dating, in turn, is a daughter of Nielsen homebred Near and Dear, making her a half-sister to multiple stakes winner and $693,500-earner Saratoga Snacks. Speed Dating brought $200,000 when purchased at the Keeneland November sale by SF Bloodstock in 2018.

Speed Dating was without issue in 2018 and has been bred to Into Mischief.

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