Third time’s the charm for Handsome Mike, his filly and her rider

The old saying “third time’s a charm” worked wonders at Tampa Bay Downs yesterday for Best Chance Yet, her sire, and her rider. The 3-year-old filly scored in a $22,500 maiden special in her third career start, she became Handsome Mike’s third winner of 2019, and Walber Alencar made it to the winner’s circle for the third time at the meeting.

Best Chance Yet’s first outing had come on the dirt with Quincy Hamilton riding. The filly didn’t show much interest and finished 20 lengths behind at odds of 42-1. In her second start, this one at five furlongs on the grass, she had Alencar aboard and he guided her from well off the pace to finish second at odds of 43-1.

The wagering public obviously didn’t get the message and in her third try, racing one mile on the turf, Best Chance Yet was allowed to go to the post at 32-1. After a bumping incident at the break, Alencar sent her up on the outside and she took the lead easily as they headed down the backstretch. After that, nobody ever got close and Best Chance Yet won by three lengths, paid $66.80, and earned a check for $13,350 plus a breeder’s award for owner/breeder Roberta Vigil.

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