Spanish Queen

With a name so elegant, it seemed like this filly should be a racing champion.

As it turned out, she was.

Trained by Richard Baltas and sired by noted California stallion Tribal Rule, Spanish Queen competed for three months between the spring and summer of 2015. Exclusively a turf horse, she took on maiden special weight company going a mile at Santa Anita in March. Favored to win, she confirmed her status on the tote board by coming from off the pace to blitz her rivals going a mile. Her dance partner that day was veteran rider Brice Blanc, who would be in the saddle every time thereafter.

The debut performance was stellar enough to send Spanish Queen to the Grade III Providencia Stakes. Making the jump to stakes company in the first try against winners can be a daunting task, but Spanish Queen accounted herself well in start number two. Never one to go to the front early, she saved her bid for the stretch, just missing at the wire.

Clearly impressing the connections, Spanish Queen stayed in the graded stakes ranks, appearing next in the Grade II Honeymoon. Contested at a mile and one-eighth like the Providencia, Spanish Queen validated the confidence of her camp, getting in front late to claim her first stakes win while equaling the score with Spirit of Xian, who beat her in the Providencia.

Next came another class hike as well as a new distance. Heavily favored in the Grade I American Oaks at ten furlongs, Spanish Queen closely tracked the leaders before powering by them in the stretch to earn the distinction of being a Grade I winner.

Obviously in impressive form, Spanish Queen headed East to Belmont Park for the Grade I Belmont Oaks Invitational on July 4. Her reputation preceded her, for she was one of the principals in the wagering come post time. But the day just did not go according to plan. While not all that far from the front during the race, Spanish Queen did not show her regular run in the stretch, fading to be well off the board in her lone appearance outside California and final start overall.

But Spanish Queen won even in defeat. Her strong couple of months earned her Champion Cal-bred Three-Year-Old Female and Turf Horse honors.

Filled with natural talent and a clear affinity for the turf, Spanish Queen reigned in two divisions within her home state after only five starts.

Or to put it another way, it could be said she was the queen among her fellow-three-year olds and the Santa Anita turf during that part of the 2015 season.

Entry added July 20, 2021 by AF.