Irish eyes were certainly smiling on Sunday as Lucky Girl pulled away in the stretch to win the eight-furlong Lady of Shamrock Stakes on the turf at Santa Anita.
It was a stylish victory for the three-year-old daughter of Exceed And Excel, who entered the race as a maiden and exited as a newly-minted Stakes winner.
Settled just off the pace by jockey Joe Bravo, Lucky Girl tracked the early leaders while racing three-wide down the backstretch. Lucky Girl made her move entering the far turn, sweeping past Shoppingforpharoah to take a short lead. Under strong urging from her rider, Lucky Girl continued to pull away through the stretch to post a two-length victory.
Bred in Ireland by Paul Hyland, Lucky Girl is out of Abbey Angel, a winning daughter of Arcano. Abbey Angel is a half-sister to Stakes winner Dusky Queen (by Shamardal) and Stakes-placed Gifts of Gold (Invincible Spirit).
Exceed And Excel is the only stallion in history to sire the winners of these Australian breed-shaping races; the Golden Slipper, Coolmore Stud Stakes, Newmarket Handicap, ATC Sires’ Produce, Blue Diamond, VRC Sprint Classic, Caulfield Guineas, Golden Rose, Thousand Guineas, Flight Stakes. The stallion is also represented by recent G3 Blue Diamond Preview winner, Miss Roseiano.
Exceed And Excel will stand again at Kelvinside, NSW, in 2022.