Stars to Shine seized control of Saturday’s $100,000 Belle Mahone Stakes as the field came off the final turn, then sprinted away from her rivals for an authoritative victory, her first added-money triumph.
After a troubled fifth-place finish in the Grade 2 Dance Smartly Stakes on July 10, Stars to Shine, a dark bay daughter of Tale of the Cat, dominated in the Belle Mahone at Woodbine, giving the Kentucky-bred her fourth win from eight starts.
Sent off as the 7-5 favourite, Stars to Shine won by 3 ¾ lengths in the event contested over 1 1/16 miles on the Toronto oval’s Polytrack, timed in 1:43.77.
Patrick Husbands, who is once again having a strong Woodbine campaign with 15 stakes scores, stalked early fractions of :25.35 and :49.57.
The four-year-old, owned by The Grange House Partnership and trained by recent Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame inductee Mark Frostad, was full of run around the final turn, widening her advantage with every stride, while Ariana D held off Perfect Shirl by one length for the
“She’s a nice filly,” said Frostad, who watched Stars to Shine win her debut over the Woodbine turf last July, only to be disqualified and placed third. “She’s had a few rough trips in stakes races, but I think today she showed she’s a pretty nice filly.”
Stars to Shine paid $4.80, $2.50 and $2.10, combining with Ariana D ($3.10, $2.10) for a $10.50 exactor. Perfect Shirl ($2.20) completed a $19.30 triactor. Honimiere was scratched.