The homebred daughter of Hear No Evil’s triumph marked the fourth visit to the winner’s circle with a 2-year-old this year for her connections, who have started just five juveniles thus far.
Ballet Diva, who was sent to the gate as the even-money favorite on the strength of a series of sharp workouts and her connections’ reputations for success with 2-year-olds, broke cleanly from her rail post position under jockey Jose Caraballo and showed the way to the finish of the five-furlong dash while under wraps in the final 1/16th of a mile.
“I was worried about the 1-hole, because if you don’t get right out of there, you’ve got a problem. But she showed she can run to her gate work in 47-and-3 (seconds),” Gold said. “She can run. She ran like she trained, so it’s not a surprise, but you don’t expect them to win so easy.”
Gold and Jacks or Better are scheduled to unveil first-time starter Brighton Lane in Friday’s fourth race. The son of Hear No Evil-Sexy Stockings is a full brother to multiple-Grade 1 stakes winner Jackson Bend ($1.3 million) and still-active Grande Shores ($395,241), who has been first or second in his last 14 races.