BALTIMORE, OCT. 11 -- Jockey Ben Feliciano tried a new approach astride In The Curl today at Pimlico, and the filly produced her first stakes victory, winning the $44,225 Lochearn Handicap by a half-length over Zigbelle.
Sent off at 9-to-1 odds, In The Curl broke fastest but was restrained slightly by Feliciano as Nasherrico took a brief one-length lead. "We decided to lay off the pace," Feliciano said. "You can ask her anywhere in the race, and she'll give it to you."
Feliciano sought a little acceleration about a quarter of the way through the six-furlong race, and In The Curl responded. She overtook Nasherrico around the turn, then opened nearly a three-length lead at the top of the stretch. Zigbelle, 10 to 1 under Jimmy Edwards, made it interesting in the final half-furlong, but Feliciano had In The Curl well in hand as she passed the wire in 1:11 1/5. Azarbaijani was third, a length behind Zigbelle.
Seven-to-10 favorite Willowy Mood never was a factor. Three times this year, the 5-year-old mare had shipped from New Jersey and won races at Pimlico. Today, she finished fourth, nearly two lengths off the winner.
In The Curl, trained by Tim Boyce for Meadow Stable, won $28,746 to eclipse the $100,000 mark for 1987.
A team of two horses and five persons from the Soviet Union arrived at Dulles Airport today. The 3-year-old colts, Star and Gjatsk, were shipped to Laurel Race Course; one is scheduled to run in the $750,000 Washington, D.C. International at Laurel Oct. 31.
Nikolai Nasibov, who rode Aniline to a second-place finish in the 1966 International -- the last time a Soviet horse ran in the race -- returned as the trainer of Star and Gjatsk. He was accompanied by jockeys Aleksandr Chyguyevets and Marat Kojomzharov, and two Soviet racing officials.