(Coady Photography photos)
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (Saturday, Nov. 21, 2020) – Winchell Thoroughbreds’ 3-year-old filly Finite, whose first career victory came last year at Kentucky Downs, resumed her winning ways by beating older fillies and mares to take Saturday’s 35th running of Churchill Downs’ $100,000 Chilukki (Grade 3) by 2 ½ lengths over Sanenus. It was her fifth stakes triumph.
Steve Asmussen, Finite’s Hall of Fame trainer, said afterward that Finite will target Santa Anita’s Grade 1, $300,000 La Brea at seven-eighths of a mile on Dec. 26. She could face Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint winner Gamine.
Finite was bred and is co-owned by Kentucky Downs’ co-managing partner Ron Winchell. The Kentucky Downs maiden victory started a five-race win streak that included Churchill Downs’ Rags to Richest Stakes and Grade 2 Golden Rod to conclude her 2-year-old season and with the Fair Grounds’ Silverbulletday and Grade 2 Rachel Alexandra starting her 3-year-old season. The chestnut daughter of Munnings had surgery for a minor ankle injury after a fourth-place finish in the Fair Grounds Oaks (Grade 2), knocking her off the Kentucky Oaks trail.
Resuming racing back at Kentucky Downs in the inaugural running of the $400,000 Music City, Finite struggled over the off turf, then narrowly lost Keeneland’s Grade 2 Raven Run in the race before the Chilukki.
“She’s a really quality filly,” Asmussen told Churchill Downs' publicity department. “We had a really nice win last year at Churchill in the Golden Rod and going one-turn in the Rags to Riches. I think she had five wins in a row at one point last year. It was a disappointing race in the Fair Grounds Oaks, and after that is when this year was sort of turned upside down. We gave her some time off after that race and she didn’t really handle the going in her start at Kentucky Downs. In the Raven Run, she ran really well against some nice fillies that day.”
Finite, ridden by Ricardo Santana, clocked one mile over a fast track in 1:35.53 to beat eight other fillies and mares. She went off the 6-5 favorite in running her record to 6 for 11, earning $757,869.
Risky Mandate led the field in the one-turn mile through swift fractions of :22.75 and :45.59 with Finite tracking in seventh down the backstretch. As she moved into contention circling around the field, Sanenus (CHI), who was sitting just off the pace-setter, grabbed the lead and crossed the six-furlong marker in 1:10.81. But the closing Finite quickly forged an advantage in upper stretch and willingly drew off thereafter.
“We had a great trip rating behind the pace,” Santana said. “I think at this stage of her career she is just getting better. She’s only 3 years old and today was her first time against older horses. We went one turn today, but she’s maturing and going to be really nice at longer distances, too.”