Elle Z Successfully Defends Mardi Gras Title

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Elle Z Successfully Defends Mardi Gras Title
Favored Change of Control breaks slowly, settles for third

 

(New Orleans, Louisiana – Tuesday, March 1, 2022) – Four weeks ago, Elle Z and Change of Control put on a show in the Fred P. Aime Memorial with the former prevailing by a nose. In Tuesday’s $75,000 Mardi Gras Stakes at Fair Ground Race Course & Slots, that anticipated battle lost all chance to materialize when Change of Control hopped at the start and spotted her speedy foe several lengths. Not that she needed a head start, but Elle Z surely capitalized on her main rival’s early misfortune.

“I didn’t know”, said Murrill, who won three races on the card. “When that horse (Goin’ Good) came up outside of me, I thought it was her (Change of Control). I just waited and waited until I knew I had to make a run, and when I did, she kicked on and wasn’t challenged.”

On a clear length advantage through early fractions of 22.75 and 45.86, M Bar O’s Elle Z, the 1.40-1 second choice, was chased throughout by Klein Racing’s Goin’ Good, who got a smidge closer at the top of the stretch, before being turned away and settling for second, beaten 1 1/4 lengths. Following the compromised start Perry Harrison’s 1.10-1 favorite Change of Control, a two-time graded stakes winner who is now just one for eight over the Stall-Wilson Turf Course, rallied late to be third, 4 1/2 lengths behind the winner. Elle Z stopped the timer in 1:03.95 for 5 1/2 furlongs on a firm turf course. Sail On Ellen, Onerollofthedice, Skinny Dip and Elle’s Town completed the order of finish.

“She’s an awesome horse,” Murrill said of Elle Z. “She gives 110% every time she gets on that track. She’s a horse to remember. I couldn’t be more grateful. The connections do a great job with her.”

Elle Z, who won the Mardi Gras on dirt last year when it was forced off the turf, has now captured five stakes overall, and three in a row at Fair Grounds for trainer Chris Hartman. She raised her career record to 18-9-3-0 with a bankroll of $447,533.

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About Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots

Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots, one of the nation’s oldest racetracks, has been in operation since 1872. Located in New Orleans, LA, Fair Grounds, which is owned by Churchill Downs Incorporated (NASDAQ Global Select Market: CHDN), also operates a slot-machine gaming facility and 15 off-track betting parlors throughout Southeast Louisiana. The 150th Thoroughbred Racing Season – highlighted by the 109th running of the Louisiana Derby – will run from November 25, 2021 through March 27, 2022. More information is available online at www.fairgroundsracecourse.com.

Elle Z