Cairo Memories Runs to Odds in Honeymoon Triumph

David Bernsen and Schroeder Farm’s Cairo Memories is 3-for-3 over the Santa Anita Park turf course after a game victory May 29 in the $100,000 Honeymoon Stakes (G3T).

The 1-2 favorite in the field of six 3-year-old fillies, the Bob Hess Jr.-trained Cairo Memories stalked frontrunning Sterling Crest  behind an opening quarter mile in :23.30 and half-mile in :47.29. Creeping into Sterling Crest’s lead around the bend, jockey Mike Smith tipped Cairo Memories two-wide in the stretch and she brushed past the leader and engaged a late bid from Island of Love down the stretch. In the final eighth, Cairo Memories kicked clear to hit the wire in 1:48.67 for the 1 1/8 miles on firm ground.

A 4 1/2-length winner of the Providencia Stakes (G3T) in gate-to-wire fashion here on April 9, Cairo Memories adapted well to today’s pace scenario as Irish-bred Sterling Crest, with Ramon Vazquez up, was intent on making the lead into the first turn.

“Last time, she had it all her own way, today she had to be tactical, got challenged and kicked home nicely,” Hess said. “It was a little tougher than we had hoped, but she ran well and I think she’ll run a little farther. We’re looking at a few things, there’s the Belmont Oaks (G1T) on my birthday (July 9), and if all goes well, we’d like to come back to Del Mar and run in the Del Mar Oaks (G1T) down there (Aug. 20).”

“As soon as competition comes to her, she just jumps right back in the bridle, which she did,” said Smith, who has ridden Cairo Memories in her last three starts. “It gave me the confidence to know that she was going to run down to the wire. She’s getting smarter about leaving the gate. She used to have trouble leaving there early in her career, but she is getting better at it and hopefully, she continues to.”

The daughter of Cairo Prince, recording her third lifetime stakes win in the Honeymoon, upped her earnings to $352,500. She was bred in Kentucky by Brereton Jones and was acquired by Davant Latham for $50,000 as a yearling at the 2020 Keeneland September Sale when offered by her breeder’s consignment.

Cairo Memories is out of the Indian Charlie mare Incarnate Memories, making her a full sibling to stakes winner Cariba and half-sister to Memories Prevail, the dam of this year’s Toyota Blue Grass Stakes (G1) hero and Kentucky Derby Sponsored by Woodford Reserve (G1) third-place finisher Zandon.

Blood Horse Staff