The tale of Aiken residents Jim and Debbie Miller’s Daisy Devine continues to unfurl. One of the great stories in sport, it’s almost unfathomable to think that a horse purchased for $5,500 has earned nearly $1,000,000. But, that’s exactly why you need to get to know this sensational mare.
The Grade 1 winning 5-year-old mare was broken and trained by Todd Turner at Chime Bell Farm, and was sent to Legacy Stable’s Brad Stauffer and Ron Stevens for further training at the Aiken Training Track.
Daisy Devine, made it three consecutive stakes victories with her third gate to wire performance, an effort that saw her capture the 1 1/16-mile $75,000 Marie G. Krantz Memorial Handicap by 1 3/4-lengths Saturday at the Fair Grounds. The race was contested over a turf course listed as good, and the bay mare by Grade 2 winner Kafwain rewarded the wagering public’s confidence, who sent off Daisy Devine as the overwhelming 1-9 favorite, and she didn’t disappoint, breaking well, and holding the lead throughout the contest for a convincing score. Andrew McKeever trains Daisy Devine, who was ridden to victory by James Graham.
“The fact that everyone thought she should win made me more nervous,” said Jim Miller, in a phone interview Saturday afternoon. “That seems to be her running style (going to the front early and maintaining the pace throughout the race). We were very excited.”
There was some question as to how the racetrack would come up, based on the amount of precipitation the Crescent City oval received the previous day.
“The turf course was real boggy and somewhat deep,” said Miller. “The time was two seconds slower than her race in the Blushing K.D.”
It was Daisy Devine’s eighth stakes victory, with five of those coming at the Fair Grounds. The mare is being pointed toward the Bayou Handicap on Feb. 23, and the plan calls for Daisy Devine to return to Keeneland in April to defend her title in the Grade 1 Jenny Wiley Stakes.
Daisy Devine carried 125 pounds, giving as much as 12 pounds to some of the other entries in the field.
“If she’s going to run in Grade 1 company, she’ll be carrying at least 124 pounds, so that was good for her,” said Miller.
Daisy Devine has 10 wins, two seconds, and 1 third from 17 lifetime starts, and increased her lifetime bankroll to $991.281.