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Contested Sets Stakes Record in Eight Belles at Churchill Downs


Contested set a new stakes record in winning the Eight Belles Stakes (G3) at Churchill Downs on the Kentucky Oaks undercard on Friday.

Owned by Jill Baffert, Contested covered seven furlongs in 1:21.19, eclipsing the previous stakes record of 1:21.97 set by Roxelana in 2000. The winner was ridden by Martin Garcia and is conditioned by Bob Baffert.

I could tell by the way Martin (Garcia) was riding that he had a lot of confidence in this filly,” said Bob Baffert. “Being on the outside gave him a lot of options of what he could do and what he wanted to do. It was a nice win even though they didn’t have Jill’s colors on. They gave her the option of choosing some yellow and orange silks they had in the jock’s room and Mike Pegram’s silks. So she said, ‘Give me Mike’s silks, they’re pretty lucky.”

Contested is a daughter of Ghostzapper and is out of the Arch mare Gold Vault. The win, her third straight, boosted her career bankroll to $144, 754.

Contested/Reed Palmer photo