Hallie Belle made her Stakes debut a winning one when she held off the late rally of favored Sensitive to win the $75,000 Pago Hop Stakes by a neck at the Fair Grounds December 30.
It was the third straight victory for the three-year-old daughter of Medaglia d’Oro, who improved her record to three wins and a second in five starts.
Content to stalk the leaders in third through the early stages of the race, Hallie Belle began her bid on the far turn, moving up to challenge the leaders while racing wide. As the field entered the stretch, Hallie Belle battled with Into Summer, eventually putting that one away with less than a furlong to run. Hallie Belle still had plenty left in the tank and was able to hold off the late-running Sensitive to post a neck victory.
Bred in Kentucky by Darley and racing for Godolphin, Hallie Belle is out of the Empire Maker mare Charity Belle, winner of the G3 Prix de la Nonette. Charity Belle’s dam, Sweet Charity, is out of Banker’s Lady, winner of the G1 Ladies Handicap, G1 Top Flight, and G1 Shuvee during her stellar racing career.
Medaglia d’Oro is the sire of seven G1 winners in 2017, more than any other stallion in North America. His G1 winners this year include two Breeders’ Cup winners – Talismanic (Turf) and Bar Of Gold (Filly & Mare Sprint). Medaglia d’Oro is also the sire of the G1-winning three-year-old fillies New Money Honey and Elate; turf mare Dickinson; two-time G1 winning juvenile Bolt d’Oro; and two-time Eclipse Champion Songbird.
Medaglia d’Oro will stand the 2018 breeding season at Jonabell Farm for $250,000.