Keen Liaison Wins Sterlie Bertram Memorial

The filly extends her win streak to four on Saturday.

Q-Racing Journal

Ronald Hisby rode Keen Liaison to a convincing victory in Saturday's $123,700 Sterlie Bertram Memorial Stakes. PHOTO: LInscott Photography

James Black's Keen Liaison, a bay daughter of the Sixes Royal stallion Sixes Liaison, extended her winning streak to four with 1 1/4-length victory in Saturday's Sterlie Bertram Memorial Stakes (R) for state-bred 3-year-olds at Indiana Grand.

Ridden by Ronald Hisby for trainer Erin Thompson, Keen Liaison covered 400 yards in :19.981. The $68,035 winner's share of the $123,700 purse pushed the filly's bankroll to $146,370.

"She's a nice horse," said Hisby. "She gallops so good in the morning. We got a good break tonight and had no problems. She finishes strong the last hundred yards."

Keen Liaison was bred by Gary Hess, and she is out of Keens Cat, a winning and stakes-placed daughter of champion Panther Mountain. She has five of seven races, and of her lifetime earnings, $144,770 has been pocketed this year. The filly's two lifetime stakes victories, including the June 3 Harley Greene Derby (R) for Indiana-bred sophomores.

"She has been such a nice horse since we got her," said Thompson. "She is easy to train and great to be around. She broke great tonight and did her thing.

"And Ronald did a great job with her, like he always does," the trainer added. "Those two are a pair."

Thompson also said that Keen Liaison would be turned out for the fall and winter and be pointed toward her 4-year-old campaign.

Members of the Sterlie Bertram family presented the trophy to the connections of Keen Liaison. In addition to the trophy, Drs. Timm Gudehus and Alec Davern presented the filly with a custom-made blanket from the Centaur Equine Specialty Hospital, located just a few miles from Indiana Grand.

Centaur Equine Specialty Hospital opened in February and provides all types of specialty equine care. It features a 4DDI digital-imaging machine, one of only four in the U.S. currently operational.

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HH Kentucky Krome ran second and was followed by Dreamers Liaison, DNA Dales Prospect, Kid Cartel, Sicario, Zoomin B Cartel, Kids Bright Image, American Purr, and Tru Lee Quick.