Magic Circle in Command Throughout Busanda


Photo: Coglianese Photos/Chelsea Durand
Magic Circle wins the Busanda Stakes at Aqueduct Racetrack

J.W. Singer’s Magic Circle  notched her breakthrough victory in her fourth attempt at stakes level with a commanding wire-to-wire performance in the $100,000 Busanda Stakes for 3-year-old fillies Jan. 23 at Aqueduct Racetrack.

The chestnut daughter of Kantharos   led nearly every step of the way in her prior start, the Dec. 4 Demoiselle Stakes (G2) at the Big A, before being caught in the final strides. In the Busanda, Magic Circle never relinquished her lead this time around, maintaining her advantage throughout to win by a handy 2 3/4 lengths.

In capturing the Busanda, Magic Circle earned 10 qualifying points toward the Longines Kentucky Oaks (G1), pushing her total up to 13 points to sit third on the leaderboard. She had previously earned two points when third in the Demoiselle and one point when fourth in the Oct. 3 Frizette Stakes (G1) at Belmont Park.

Piloted by Jose Ortiz, Magic Circle was nudged a few strides out of the gate and sent to the front, clicking off a :24.38 opening quarter and :48.28 half-mile on an uncontested lead as Rosebug  stalked her in second down the backstretch. Second-choice Morning Matcha  was beginning to make her run from fifth into the far turn but Magic Circle bounded away from the field at the top of the lane, opening up by five lengths, and she powered to the wire. Morning Matcha made a determined rally but couldn't catch the winner.

Magic Circle, who returned $4.10 on a $2 win ticket as the favorite, raced the 1 1/8 miles on a fast track in 1:51.29. Morning Matcha was second by 1 3/4 lengths over 23-1 Reigning Chick  in third. Rosebug, Waters of Merom , and Gamestonks  completed the order of finish.

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"She broke really sharp and put me there by herself," said Ortiz. "She was traveling very nicely the first quarter. She was pulling me a little too much. I was a little bit nervous and I just wanted to put my hands down and relax and she finally did passing the seven furlongs. When she entered the backside she was completely relaxed and going a very decent cruising speed. She didn't walk the dog but the track is fast and inside is good, so I wasn't afraid to let her go."

The remaining local qualifiers for the Kentucky Oaks are the one-mile $250,000 Busher Invitational Stakes (50-20-10-5) March 5 and the nine-furlong $250,000 Gazelle Stakes (G3) (100-40-20-10) April 9.

"I'm going to talk to the owner about that and decide what we are going to do," said trainer Rudy Rodriguez. "I don’t know. You never know. Right now she's learning, so we just have to hope for the best."

Magic Circle brought her lifetime earnings up to $194,000 and boasts a record of 2-1-1 in five starts.

She was bred in Kentucky by Manitou Farm and is the second of two foals out of the Distorted Humor  mare Magic Humor, who was last reported bred to Catholic Boy   for 2022.

Run Forever Racing purchased Magic Circle from Costanzo Sales the 2021 Ocala Breeders' Sales Spring Sale of 2-Year-Olds in Training Sale for $110,000. The filly previously sold as a short yearling at the 2020 Keeneland January Horses of All Ages Sale for $50,000 to South Paw out of the Brookdale Sales consignment.

Video: Busanda S. (BT)