Sconsin takes this battle with Bell’s the One in Open Mind

(Churchill Downs stakes recap. Coady Photography photo of Sconsin’s half-length victory over Bell’s the One, at left, in Saturday night’s $300,000 Open Mind.)

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (Saturday, Sept. 18, 2021) – Lloyd Madison Farms IV’s homebred Sconsin got the first run on Bell’s the One down the stretch in Saturday night’s 12th running of the $300,000 Open Mind (Listed) at Churchill Downs as she turned back a late run from the 4-5 favorite to prevail by a half-length in a clash of two of the top filly and mare sprinters in America.

Trained by Greg Foley and ridden by Tyler Gaffalione, Sconsin ran six furlongs in a stakes record 1:08.75 as the 9-5 second betting choice.

Sconsin, 3 ¼-length winner of the $150,000 Winning Colors (Grade III) at Churchill Downs in May, was rated in fourth, as expected, behind pacesetter Mundaye Call who dictated the terms from the rail through early fractions of :21.64 and :44.77. Ain’t No Elmers and Jungle Juice (IRE) tracked just behind the leader. Bell’s the One, who improved her impressive record to nine wins from 19 starts and $1.1 million earnings after a victory in the $200,000 Honorable Miss (GII) at Saratoga this summer, trailed the compact field of five fillies and mares.

Sconsin made the first move and had a two-length advantage on Bell’s the One leaving the turn. Sconsin drew even with the leading trio with a furlong to run and out-finished Bell’s the One to the wire.

“A lot of credit has to go to Greg and his team for getting this filly ready to go tonight,” Gaffalione said. “She was very sharp and we got into a good position early. There was some pace in front early. She dug in well late to hold off (Bell’s the One). It was a really strong effort tonight.”

Sconsin, who banked the $185,000 first prize, improved her record to five wins, four seconds and a third in 15 starts. Her career earnings total $783,362.

The career earnings for the 4-year-old Kentucky-bred daughter of Include now total $783,362.

“Going into the race we saw there was a little bit of speed on paper,” Foley said. “She got the pace setup tonight unlike the Ballerina at Saratoga. Neil (Pessin)’s filly (Bell’s the One) beat us in the spring and we got the better hand tonight. She deserves it. Tyler gave her a great ride. He knew Bell’s the One was coming and Sconsin just had her measured tonight. It was our turn.”

Sconsin paid $5.60, $2.40 and $2.10. Bell’s the One, ridden by Corey Lanerie, returned $2.40 and $2.10. Mundaye Call finished another four lengths back in third under Florent Geroux and paid $2.40 to show. It was another half-length back to Jungle Juice (IRE) and 6 ¾ lengths back to Ain’t No Elmers.

“It was a great race tonight with two solid horses,” said Neil Pessin, trainer of Bell’s the One. “Bell’s ran a great race and we are proud of her effort.”

Saturday’s race saluted the late Eugene Klein’s Hall of Fame filly Open Mind, the D. Wayne Lukas-trained winner of the 1988 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (GI) at Churchill Downs who returned to the Louisville track the following spring to win the Kentucky Oaks. The New Jersey-bred filly was an Eclipse Award champion at ages two and three. A winner of 12 races and $1,844,372 in 19 starts, the daughter of Deputy Minister was enshrined in Racing’s Hall of Fame in 2011.


Jennie Rees is a communications and advocacy specialist in the horse industry who spent 32 years covering horse racing for The (Louisville) Courier-Journal before taking a corporate buyout. In addition to handling communications for the Kentucky HBPA, Rees is Kentucky Downs’ publicity director, manages in-season racing publicity for Ellis Park and serves as a consultant to the National HBPA. Other projects include the Preakness Stakes, Indiana Grand’s Indiana Derby Week and work for various HBPA affiliates and horsemen’s associations.