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The Natalma and Summer Stakes Through the Eyes of Trakus

There were a lot of good turf races at Woodbine this weekend, highlighted by the Tureallure's win in the Grade 1 Woodbine Mile on Sunday.  On Saturday, the juveniles took center stage in the Natalma and Summer Stakes, won by Northern Passion and Finale, respectively.  Thanks to the wonder world of Trakus, we can take a more in-depth look at the top finishers in each of these two races.  (Woodbine Trakus Charts)

Let's look at the pair of juvenile turf races that ran on Saturday, both of which were contested over one mile.  I've combined the data from those two races into the following charts since the races were at the same distance, track and day.  While the pace of each was different, I think we can make some interesting comparisons and observations from these two races from the Trakus data.

The data below includes the top four finishes in each of the two races, along with the amount of ground covered, ground loss (if any), and average speed.  All eight horses are sorted by total ground covered.

Horse Dist. +/- Race AvgMPH
Excaper 5348 0 Summer(2st) 37.9
Northern Passion 5353 5 Natalma(1st) 38.2
Daddy Nose Best 5359 11 Summer(3rd) 37.8
Sprited Miss 5363 15 Natalma(4th) 37.8
Dayatthespa 5368 20 Natalma(2nd) 38.2
Maritimer 5369 21 Summer(4th) 37.8
Finale 5372 24 Summer(1st) 38.1
Stephanie's Kitten 5403 55 Natalma(3rd) 38.4

Some pretty interesting numbers to take away from that chart.  The first being that Stephanie's Kitten had the fastest average speed of any of the top four finishers in either race but covered the most ground of any horse... by far (5,403 feet).  Stephanie's Kitten was beaten by 3 1/2 lengths at the wire but lost 50 feet to Northern Passion and 35 to Dayatthespa

I'm looking forward to when Stephanie's Kitten races again.

Stephanie's Kitten is a (surprise!) Ken and Sarah Ramsay filly by Kitten's Joy out of a Catienus mare (Unfold the Rose) and is trained by Wayne Catalano.

Excaper covered the least amount of ground when he finished 2nd in the Summer Stakes but it wasn't good enough to beat to beat Finale, even though the winner covered 24 more feet.


Horse Race 1/4 1/2 3/4 7/8 Mile
Northern Passion Natalma 24.10 47.56 71.51 83.63 95.23
Dayatthespa Natalma 23.59 46.73 71.12 83.52 95.44
Stephanie's Kitten Natalma 24.14 47.78 71.58 83.84 95.73
Spirited Miss Natalma 23.83 47.15 71.65 84.29 96.35
Finale Summer 24.09 47.41 70.96 83.31 95.86
Excaper Summer 23.92 47.29 70.93 83.34 95.95
Daddy Nose Best Summer 25.07 48.30 71.74 84.15 96.53
Maritimer Summer 24.03 47.34 70.95 83.59 96.58


Internal Splits

Horse Race 1/4 1/2 3/4 7/8 Mile
Northern Passion Natalma 24.10 23.46 23.95 12.12 11.60
Dayatthespa Natalma 23.59 23.14 24.39 12.40 11.92
Stephanie's Kitten Natalma 24.14 23.64 23.80 12.26 11.89
Spirited Miss Natalma 23.83 23.32 24.50 12.64 12.06
Finale Summer 24.09 23.32 23.55 12.35 12.55
Excaper Summer 23.92 23.37 23.64 12.41 12.61
Daddy Nose Best Summer 25.07 23.23 23.44 12.41 12.38
Maritimer Summer 24.03 23.31 23.61 12.64 12.99


The final fractions of the Natama were much quicker than the Summer Stakes, but the pace of the Natalma was also slower, allowing the fillies to conserve more energy for the stretch drive. However, in the overall picture, the Natalma was a faster race (1:35.23 vs 1:35.86) and the top three finishers in the Natalma all ran faster times than Finale in the Summer Stakes, including the filly that covered the most ground of the top eight - Stehpanie's Kitten.

The official DRF/Equibase charts have the final time of the Natalma as 1:35.00, and the Summer as 1:35.51.

We'll see how this plays out going forward, but I'm particularly interested to see which fillies from the Natalma will head to Louisville for the Breeders' Cup.