Pop a Top LLC’s homebred Beyond Blame rallied at the top of the stretch and held off Go Noni Go and Heavenly Love to capture Saturday night’s 49th running of the $100,000 Regret Stakes (GIII) presented by Cintas.

Beyond Blame, ridden by Florent Geroux and trained by Brad Cox, ran 1 1/8 miles on the firm turf in 1:48.94 while defeating 12 other 3-year-old fillies.

“It’s great to be able to perform at the top level on a big Saturday like this,” Geroux said. “She got into some trouble in her last start but tonight she settled nicely into the first turn and was able to relax just off the speed. She tried really hard down the lane once she took the lead to hold off the other horses. Credit to Brad and his entire team. It’s been a great night.”

Beyond Blame, the 7-2 favorite in the wagering, paid $9, $5.20 and $3.60. Go Noni Go, with Hall of Fame jockey Mike Smith aboard, paid $13.20 and $7.40. Heavenly Love closed late to finish third and returned $4. Secret Message, Cash Out, Finess Bere (FR), Kabella, Stave, Lemon Princess, She’s Pretty Lucky, Go Google Yourself, Consolida (GB) and Romantic Moment completed the order of finish.

Romantic Moment set a swift pace of :23.50 for the first quarter mile, :47.13 for the half and 1:11.43 for six furlongs before Go Noni Go took the lead with three-eighths of a mile to go. With Beyond Blame racing on the inside in fourth, the daughter of Blame captured the lead with an eighth mile remaining while holding off the late charge of eventual third-place Heavenly Love.

Beyond Blame improved her record to 6-3-2-0 with $123,040 in earnings.

REGRET QUOTES

Florent Geroux, jockey of BEYOND BLAME (winner): “It’s great to be able to perform at the top level on a big Saturday like this. She got into some trouble in her last start but tonight she settled nicely into the first turn and was able to relax just off the speed. She tried really hard down the lane once she took the lead to hold off the other horses. Credit to Brad and his entire team. It’s been a great night.”

Brad Cox, trainer of BEYOND BLAME (winner): “If you just simply cross off her last race, she hasn’t run a bad race in her life. She proved tonight she was very versatile and could have some nice races in her future this summer.”

Mike Smith, jockey of GO NONI GO (runner-up): “She was closing well in the lane but we just couldn’t get there in time. She tried hard and ran a good race overall.”

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