Marissa’s Lady Up In Time In ‘Make Your Mare’ Holiday Inaugural At Turfway Park

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December 2, 2023 (Florence, KY)-Favorite Marissa’s Lady ran down pacesetter B G Warrior in the final strides to win Saturday’s 37th running of the $125,000 Holiday Inaugural Stakes, launching the three-race ‘Make Your Mare’ series at Turfway Park.

In partnership with Claiborne Farm, the Holiday Inaugural is the first race in the series that will award fillies and mares credit towards a future stallion paring upon their retirement.

The Holiday Inaugural was Marissa’s Lady’s fourth lifetime victory at Turfway Park and eighth overall from 14 career starts. The 4-year-old Kentucky-bred daughter of Violence was ridden by Rafael Bejarano for trainer Bill Morey. She is campaigned as a homebred for Boone Family Trust and Tillema Family Trust.

In the opening stages of the six-furlong Holiday Inaugural, B G Warrior and jockey Joe Ramos were intent on making the lead. They were briefly joined on the front end by fellow longshot Thunders Rocknroll through a swift opening quarter-mile in :21.95. Marissa’s Lady sat third down the backstretch, just to the outside of the dueling leaders. Shortly after the first quarter mile, Thunders Rocknroll began to retreat while B G Warrior continued her torrid pace with a :43.95 half-mile time. As the field entered the stretch, B G Warrior increased her lead by two lengths over Marissa’s Lady, but she began to shorten her stride. In the final jump, Marissa’s Lady collared B G Warrior for a neck victory in a final time of 1:09.42 on the all-weather track.

Bling was third, a neck behind B G Warrior.

Marissa’s Lady returned $5.46 for the win.

As part of the ‘Make Your Mare’ series, top three finishers in the Holiday Inaugural were awarded $10,000, $5,000 and $2,500 in credits to use for a future stallion pairing at the famed Paris, Ky. farm through the 2025 breeding season.

The Holiday Inaugural’s winner’s share of $72,434 boosted Marissa’s Lady’s overall earnings to $629,600. Her dam is the Cee’s Tizzy mare Marissa’s Joy.