James and Jane Fraser's Muir Woods bested stablemate Startin Something in the $75,000 Norm Barron Queen City Oaks at River Downs on Saturday. Those two Tim Hamm trainees may have thought it was a match race as it was 24 lengths back to the rest of the field fighting it out for third.
Muir Woods was in tight after the start of the 1 1/8 race for 3-year-old Ohio-bred fillies, but soon worked her way into a stalking position down the backstretch. Going into the far turn she quickly moved past the pacesetters. "I just let her be comfortable down the backstretch and urged her on at the three-eights pole and she picked it up great," said Mario Madrid, who rode her to victory at River Downs in the Tomboy Stakes on May 14. "She really likes this track."
Trainer Tim Hamm concurs. "For whatever reason, she just doesn't like a synthetic surface,but she loves the dirt at River Downs," said Hamm. "I've nominated her for the Vivacious at River Downs and we'll see if she can tackle older mares on the turf. Startin Something ran her eyeballs out and since she is an accredited Ohio-bred I may try her against the boys in the Horizon. We'll see how they both bounce out of the Oaks."
Muir Woods was sent off as the favorite and paid $4.40, $3.20 and $3.40. Startin Something,the 2010 Juvenile Champion Filly in Ohio returned $6.80 and $6.00 and 94 to 1 longshot Bold and Beautiful had a show payoff of $14.80.