Forever Unbridled outduels Carrumba in Comely
Forever Unbridled brought a 5-1-2-2 mark into the Oaks but faded in the lane and wouldn’t be seen again until showing up for the Raven Run S. (G2) at Keeneland on October 17. She did much better in that seven-furlong sprint, finishing just 1 3/4 lengths behind the winner in fifth, and appeared primed for a return to the winner’s circle in this spot.
Jockey John Velazquez guided Forever Unbridled over the fast dirt at Aqueduct, settling her into a stalking spot just behind the early leaders. The duo bided their time as Temper Mint Patty led the way up front through splits of :24.04 and :49.47 while tracked on the outside by Carrumba.
Forever Unbridled moved up on the outside of Carrumba entering the final turn, and those two easily surged past Temper Mint Patty at the head of the stretch. The dueling sophomores pulled away from all other rivals and battled it out with very little space between them.
Carrumba gained a short advantage down on the rail but Forever Unbridled wouldn’t give up. The Dallas Stewart pupil dug deep and managed to stick her head in front in the shadow of the wire, getting the win in a final time of 1:50.75 to earn her first score since breaking her maiden last December at Fair Grounds.
Forever Unbridled paid $11.40 for the win as the 7-2 third choice, and improved her career mark to read 8-2-2-2. She more than doubled her lifetime earnings to $311,600.
Bred in Kentucky, the bay miss is by Unbridled’s Song and out of the Lemon Drop Kid mare Lemons Forever, who upset the 2006 Kentucky Oaks at 47-1. Forever Unbridled is a full sister to Unbridled Forever, who ran third in last year’s Kentucky Oaks and in two starts this season has captured the Ballerina S. (G1) and Shine Again S. at Saratoga.
Forever Unbridled (outside) and Carrumba (inside) photo courtesy of NYRA/Adam Coglianese Photography
Dallas Stewart, winning trainer of Forever Unbridled (No. 9) (by telephone): "She has been a solid horse all year; ran second and third to I'm a Chatterbox a few times. We gave her a break after the (Kentucky) Oaks and she'd been training great. She came up there ready to run. There are a lot of Grade 1s next year and at Saratoga and I think she's capable if we handle it right."
John Velazquez, winning rider aboard Forever Unbridled (No. 9): "I knew (Carrumba) is a fighter, so I was just waiting for the last second to get on her. I waited until the three-sixteenths pole to get on her and she put up a good fight. I just wanted to wait, wait, wait and then surprise her. If I went too quick by her, I knew she would come back and beat me, so I waited a little longer and then surprise her in the end. It worked out."