Weekend Recap 8/3

Moreno goes all the way in the Whitney 

Moreno went right to the front and never looked back as he scored the biggest win of his career in the $1,500,000 Grade 1 Whitney Handicap.  Sent off at odds of 10/1, Moreno and Junior Alvarado broke well and burst right out to the front, quickly putting a length and a half on Golden Ticket and race favorite Palace Malice ( 3rd Selection) who were second and third.  Moreno brought his lead to the top of the lane and as they straightened away, he got his first test from Itsmyluckyday ( 2nd Selection) who burst up into the second spot.  But Moreno had plenty left in the tank as he held Itsmyluckyday at bay for the entire stretch run, winning by a length and a quarter in the end.  Itsmyluckyday was a clear second as Will Take Charge ( Top Selection) finally got going to finish third.

In the Grade 1 Test Stakes it was Sweet Reason ( 2nd Selection) who overcame a stumbling start to close in and win the $500,000 event.  Sweet Reason and Irad Ortiz Jr. came out in seventh early on as Fiftyshadesofgold went out and set a strong but not overly fast pace.  Fiftyshadesofgold brought that lead into the lane but Sweet Reason had all the late momentum and finished strong to win by a length over Miss Behaviour and Little Alexis who ran second and third.  In the Grade 1 Vanderbilt it was Palace ( 2nd Selection) who had to reel in a very tough on the lead Happy My Way to get the win.  Happy My Way was out on the lead and opened up two lengths in mid-stretch before Palace and Cornelio Velasquez kicked it into gear and got up to win by a length.  Happy My Way was second with Falling Sky ( 3rd Selection) finishing in third.  Filimbi caught Dayatthespa ( Top Selection) late to take home the De La Rose Stakes.

Tapiture digs in late to win the West Virginia Derby

Tapiture and Rosie Napravnik had to make some decisions at the eighth pole when they found themselves a couple lengths behind Candy Boy and Vicar’s in Trouble.  Napravnik elected to steer Tapiture out into the clear and he stretched his strides out and got up late to just nail Candy Boy by a nose.  Sent off as the 9/5 second choice, Tapiture ( Top Selection) was sixth early on as Vicar’s in Trouble ( 2nd Selection) went out to set the early pace with pressure from For Goodness Sake through solid fractions.  Vicar’s In Trouble tried to kick away at the top of the lane but Candy Boy ( 3rd Selection) came out after him and eventually forged to a narrow lead.  Meanwhile Tapiture was in behind and once Rosie guided him to the outside, he accelerated and got up in the final yards to win by a nose.

In the $200,000 West Virginia Governor’s Cup it was Carve ( Top Selection) who held off a very tough Adirondack King to get the win by a neck.  Adirondack King went out and set the early pace with Carve glued to his hip the entire way. Carve forged ahead at the quarter pole, but Adirondack King fought back and made it a memorable stretch drive, with Carve prevailing by just a neck.

Iotapa does it again, this time takes the Clement L. Hirsch 

Iotapa stunned racing fans last time with her big ten length score in a Grade 1 at Santa Anita, but this time the bettors were onto her as she scored as the even money favorite in the Grade 1 Clement L. Hirsch Stakes at Del Mar.  Iotapa stayed close to early leader Broken Sword as the track was favoring speed all day long.  Iotapa ( Top Selection) made her move at the top of the lane, but couldn’t pass Broken Sword til about the sixteenth pole where she finally started to edge away and won by a hard fought half length under jockey Joe Talamo.  Broken Sword was a clear second ahead of Parranda ( Top Selection) who ran third.

Trixton takes home the Hambletonian crown 

Trixton took advantage of three horses breaking stride early in the $1,000,000 Hambletonian and held off his stablemate Nuncio to get the win. Sent off at odds of 4/1, Trixton was fourth early on as Nuncio ( 3rd Selection) went out to set the pace.  Odds on choice Father Patrick ( 2nd Selection) broke off stride badly and was last the entire way around the oval, beaten some seventy lengths in the end.   Nuncio meanwhile stayed up on the engine and came into the stretch with a length and a half lead over Trixton who just kept on rallying and finally got up in the final yards to win by half a length.  Nuncio was second while 45/1 long shot Harper Blue Chip ( Longshot) got up for third.

In the Hambo Oaks it was Lifetime Pursuit ( 2nd Selection) scored a 10/1 upset win over favored Designed To Be ( Top Selection) who rallied but came up two and a half lengths short in the end.  Take the Money ( Longshot) finished third and completed a $400 trifecta.


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