In her first competitive outing since joining the shedrow of trainer Brendan Walsh, Into Mystic made the best possible impression when she wore down pacesetter Ambassador Luna to prevail by 1 1/2 lengths and earn her first career stakes win in the $94,250 Kentucky Downs Preview Ladies Sprint. The 4-year-old daughter of Into Mischief was also her sire’s 75th black-type winner.
Owners G. Chris Coleman and Brad King sent Into Mystic into Walsh’s care following her fourth-place finish for trainer Jeff Mullins in the May 25 Monrovia Stakes (G2T) at Santa Anita Park. She was beaten just 1 3/4 lengths by the winner that day and used a last-to-first rally to win by 5 1/2 lengths going 5 1/2 furlongs Feb. 16 at Sunland Park.
“Hats off to Brendan. He gave me all the confidence in the world riding her today,” jockey Joe Talamo said. “I watched her replays, and she ran some pretty impressive races. When I went to the paddock, he said, ‘Man, she’s training tremendously.’ He pretty much said, ‘Ride her the way you want. Just get her in a good spot.’ She was there for me the whole way.
“She broke really sharp. That other outside filly cleared, and we were pretty content where we were. Five-sixteenths pole, quarter pole, I kind of tipped her out, and from there on she was pretty impressive.”
Sent off as the 8-5 favorite in the eight-horse field, Into Mystic covered the distance in 1:04.18. Dance Rhythms was third, 2 1/2 lengths behind Ambassador Luna.
“She’s a nice filly. She’s done nothing but impress us since she came to us,” said Walsh, adding that the Spendthrift Farm Ladies Sprint (G3T) would be next for Into Mystic. “Her last run in California was very good. That form has stood up since. I was quite concerned about the ground because I think she’ll be a better filly on faster ground. I think she has some big days ahead of her. “She’s a lovely filly and she’s got a lot of heart. I think she showed that today to fend them off.”