Lee Christian’s Fanniebellefleming edged clear of favorite Kapalua Starlight in mid-stretch and pulled away to a two and a quarter-length victory in the $50,000 Donna Freyer Stakes at Laurel Park on Saturday, Nov. 25. The six-furlong stakes for 2-year-old fillies was one of two South Carolina Residency Races on the card, restricted to runners who spent at least 90 days in South Carolina.
A daughter of leading Maryland freshman sire Freedom Child, Fanniebellefleming was raised at the Elloree Training Center in Elloree, S.C., and is trained by Hamilton Smith. Sent off as the longest shot of six runners, she paid $23.20 in recording her second win in six starts, and boosted her earnings to $54,117.
Bred in Maryland by Mrs. J.W.Y. “Glennie” Martin Jr., Fanniebellefleming is the first foal out of the winning Two Punch mare Ruby Peak. The pedigree goes back decades at historic Worthington Farms in Glyndon, Md., through a family developed by Glennie’s late uncle David P. Reynolds, starting with Fanniebellefleming’s fourth dam, North of Venus. A multiple graded stakes-winning daughter of Northern Dancer, North of Venus produced four foals for Reynolds – stakes-placed Fager’s Fancy (by Dr. Fager), the winning Barbizon colt Northern Barbizon, and two offspring by leading sire Raja Baba. The first, Northern Raja, placed in his only start and was retired to stud at Worthington Farm where he had a long and successful stud career. The other was unraced Raja’s Venus, Fanniebellefleming’s third dam.
Raja’s Venus was retired to the broodmare band at Worthington Farm and produced 11 foals, the first seven by the farm’s champion sire Lord Gaylord. Ten of her foals started, all won, and three were stakes horses. The best, Lady Beaumont, captured the 1993 Maryland Million Lassie and placed in three stakes. Lady Beaumont retired and produced 11 foals. All eight to start were winners, including stakes winners First Arrival, Music Please and stakes-placed Beau’s Trip, as well as Ruby Peak.
Read more about the running of the Donna Freyer here