Knicks Go (the gray one) wins Saturday's Grade I Whitney at Saratoga, earning a Breeders' Cup Classic berth. Photo by Dom Napolitano, courtesy of New York Racing Association
Aug. 9 (UPI) -- Knicks Go won the Grade I Whitney, Ireland and Texas split the big New York turf races and Bella Sofia won the Grade I Test Stakes to highlight one of the biggest weekends of the Saratoga summer.
Two-year-olds are getting geared up all around the Northern Hemisphere, and Ebro River stepped up big time Sunday at the Curragh in Ireland to announce his presence.
There was lots more action from coast to coast in North America, as well as in France and Germany. The "Ladies Team" won the Shergar Cup jockey competition in England.
Meanwhile, a big tip of the hat to Steve Asmussen, who became the No. 1 North American trainer ranked by wins when Gioia Stella won a maiden event at first asking Aug. 7 at Saratoga.
That was Asmussen's 9,446th training triumph, breaking a tie with Dale Baird. He's second on the earnings list, well behind Todd Pletcher.
Chad Brown also had a training landmark a day earlier at Saratoga as Digital Software won the 10th race at the Spa -- No. 2,000 for Brown.
We haven't quite done 2,000 of these reports, but we're not far off so let's get this one underway.
Knicks Go has gone just about everywhere -- from Saudi Arabia to Iowa -- and ultimately is headed for Korea where he will stand for his owner, the Korea Racing Association. In the meantime, he may go to Del Mar for the Breeders' Cup Classic after earning a spot in that race with a dominating win in Saturday's $1.25 million Grade I Whitney at Saratoga.
Knicks Go, a striking gray son of Paynter, was the whole story in the Whitney. Facing four quality rivals, the 5-year-old went right to the front for jockey Joel Rosario and quickly opened a big lead down the backstretch.
The 2020 Preakness winner, Swiss Skydiver, made a move turning for home, but Knicks Go had none of it, drawing off again to win by 4 1/2 lengths.
Maxfield was second, suffering only the second defeat of his nine-race career, and Silver State had a six-race winning streak snapped and come in third. Swiss Skydiver finished fourth and By My Standards, who stumbled at the break, completed the order of finish as Knicks Go ran 1 1/8 miles in 1:47.70.
Knicks Go was 3-for-3 last year with a win in the Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile at Keeneland. He opened 2021 with a win in the Grade I Pegasus World Cup at Gulfstream Park, and then finished fourth in both the $20 million Saudi World Cup in Riyadh and the Grade I Met Mile at Belmont Park.
He got back on course with a 10 1/2-length romp in the Grade III Cornhusker Handicap at Prairie Meadows in his previous start.
Winning trainer Brad Cox seemed a little awed by his horse's performance Saturday and almost reluctant to commit to the Breeders' Cup Classic plan.
"Maybe down the lane at the sixteenth pole I thought, 'Oh wow, he's going to win this thing, and at that point I was thinking, 'What a horse. What a performance,'" Cox said. "This was an incredibly deep group of horses, and I'm very proud of the effort of my horse today."
About the Breeders' Cup: " We'll come up with a plan somehow. We'll just let the dust settle, but it will probably be the Classic."
A few other races in this division:
Another name to reckon with: Mr. Wireless. The Dialed In gelding stalked a soft pace in Saturday's $500,000 Grade III West Virginia Derby at Mountaineer Park, surged to the lead heading for home and won by 1 1/4 lengths as the favorite.
Warrant was making up ground but settled for second, followed by Bourbonic and Bourbon Thunder. Mr. Wireless ran 1 1/8 miles on a fast track in 1:52.49 with Ramon Vazquez up for trainer Bret Calhoun. He earlier was second in the Texas Derby and first in the Indiana Derby.
Art Collector was in charge all the way in Friday's $120,000 Alydar Stakes at Saratoga, dueling for the early lead, gaining some separation and then holding on to win by 1 1/2 lengths from Night Ops. Math Wizard was third, another 8 1/2 lengths in arrears.
Art Collector, a 4-year-old Bernardini colt, ran 1 1/8 miles on a fast track in 1:48.20 under Luis Saez, collecting his sixth win from 13 starts.
Sprawl led from the start in Saturday's $200,000 Grade III West Virginia Governor's Cup at Mountaineer Park, repulsed a challenge from Mighty Heart and ran on to win by 1 3/4 lengths over that foe. Bourbon Calling was another 2 3/4 lengths back in third.
Sprawl, a 4-year-old City Zip colt, finished 1 1/16 miles on a fast track in 1:44.95. Joe Talamo had the mount for trainer Thomas Drury Jr.
Sure'n an Irish raider always was going to win Saturday's $1 million Grade I Saratoga Derby Invitational. And so it happened -- just not according to script. Rather than the favorite, Bolshoi Ballet, the winner was State of Rest, with jockey John Velazquez improvising during the course of the race.
And the winning trainer, therefore, was not Irish maestro Aidan O'Brien, but rather, his son and former jockey, Joseph Patrick O'Brien.
State of Rest, a Starspangledbanner colt, got off to a slow start and, rather than going to the front as planned, Velazquez tucked him in mid-field and saved ground.
When the tiring leaders, Bolshoi Ballet and Cellist, neared the end of their performance early in the stretch run, State of Rest rallied outside to win by 1 length.
Soldier Rising, making his first start for U.S. connections after racing in France, made a bold move along the rail to gain second with Du Jour finishing third.
Although Ireland continued its domination of New York's rich turf stakes, this outcome was a surprise as Bolshoi Ballet went to the post as favorite after winning the Grade I Belmont Derby Invitational last month.
It was a big step forward for State of Rest, who had only one previous victory and had never run in a Group 1 event back home.
"He was unlucky not to win his last race," O'Brien said of State of Rest. "He ran really well and we knew that getting more distance today would suit him well. We'll get him home and talk to the owners and see how he is and see where we go next."
Sunday at Del Mar, Zoffarelli dueled to the wire with Sword Zorro in the $150,000 Grade III La Jolla Stakes for 3-year-olds. Sword Zorro had his nose down on the line first but the stewards said, "Uh, uh," after looking at some late bumping and demoted that one to third.
Zoffarelli got the lion's share. and the favorite, Hudson Ridge, was moved up to second.
Zoffarelli, an Irish-bred Zoffany gelding, is trained by Jeff Mullins. It was his first U.S. start after an eight-race campaign in England that resulted in one win and five seconds.
Much of the weekend program at Ellis Park in southwest Kentucky's "Purchase" region was devoted to "preview" races for the big, rich September events a bit farther south at Kentucky Downs.
The Ellis races were sponsored by TVG. and the track was blessed with good weather and firm turf -- so firm that records fell Sunday like the leaves of autumn.
Core Values came from last of seven to win Saturday's $100,000 Dueling Grounds Derby Preview. The Honor Code filly, with Rafael Bejarano up for trainer Vicky Oliver, won by a nose over Royal Prince with Modern Science another neck back in third.
Born Great and Siem Riep both came from far back to finish 1-2 in Saturday's $100,000 Turf Sprint Preview. Born Great, a 5-year-old Scat Daddy gelding, got 5 1/2 furlongs in 1:00.48, just 0.22 second off the course record.
Betwithbothhands battled head-to-head with Tut's Revenge before winning Sunday's $100,000 Mint Million Preview by 1/2 length over that rival. The favorite, Necker Island, settled for third.
Betwithbothhands, a 5-year-old Uncle Mo gelding, finished in course-record time of 1:32.05 with Rocco Bowen riding for owner/trainer Armando Hernandez.
Bluegrass Parkway loomed six-wide coming into the stretch in the $125,000 Turf Cup Preview, passed all seven rivals and won by 1/2 length at odds of 13-1. Spooky Channel was second, with Family Way another neck back in third.
Bluegrass Parkway, a 5-year-old Quality Road gelding, was timed in an almost unbelievable 1:57.94 for the 1 1/4 miles with Julien Leparoux riding for trainer Mike Maker.
By comparison, Secretariat won the 1973 Kentucky Derby at the same distance on the dirt in 1:59 2/5. Equibase lists the fastest-ever North American 1 1/4 mile on turf as run in 2008 at Santa Anita by Red Giant -- 1:57.16.
Filly & Mare Turf
If any horse was going to break the Irish hoodoo in the NYRA turf series, why wouldn't it be a Texas-bred? And so it was as Con Lima, a Commissioner filly hailing from the Lone Star State, led all the way around to win Sunday's $700,000 Grade III Saratoga Oaks Invitational by 3/4 length.
In fairness, Con Lima was not facing Ireland's best. Even Santa Barbara, who won last month's Grade I Belmont Oaks, was absent, awaiting next weekend's engagement in the Grade I Beverly D at Arlington Park. And, the second- and third-place horses in Sunday's race, Higher Truth and Creative Flair, were bred in Ireland.
But it's about the winner. Con Lima, with Flavien Prat aboard, was never seriously threatened at any point in the 1 3/16 miles over firm turf and responded readily to the late bid from Higher Truth. The Todd Pletcher trainee was second to Santa Barbara at Belmont in their last start and has missed a top-two finish only once in her busy 13-race career.
Asked about competing against Europeans in the NYRA "Turf Triple" series, Pletcher said, "It's a great win. I think the idea behind it was to attract some international horses and we saw yesterday [in the Saratoga Derby], they did very well and they did very well at Belmont. I was happy to keep one at home."
The Ellis Park events for distaffers:
Flippant was along late to win Saturday's $100,000 Dueling Grounds Oaks Preview by 1/2 length with Caldee second and Adventuring another head behind in third. Rafael Bejerano rode Flippant, a Tapit filly trained by Vicky Oliver.
Yes It's Ginger pressed the pace in Sunday's $100,000 Ladies Sprint Stakes Preview, then got by Elle Z in the stretch run for a 1 1/4-lengths victory.
Yes It's Ginger, a 5-year-old Yes It's True mare, ran 5 1/2 furlongs on the firm going in 1:00.71 for jockey Marcellino Pedroza.
She'sonthewarpath won a four-way scramble to the finish in Sunday's $100,000 Ladies Mile Stakes Preview, scoring by 1/2 length over Dominga with Princess Causeway and Look Me Over in close attendance.
She'sonthewarpath, a 5-year-old Declaration of War mare, got 1 mile in course-record time of 1:31.98, lowering the mark set two races earlier by Betwithbothhands.
Public Sector was more or less compelled by traffic to take the inside route in the stretch run of Friday's $200,000 National Museum of Racing Hall of Fame Stakes at Saratoga, but with Flavien Prat helping things along, the Kingman colt worked things out for a 1-length victory.
Annex was second and In Effect came from last of seven to finish third in a race restricted to 3-year-olds.
Public Sector, a British-bred Kingman colt, was clocked in 1:35.03 over the firm inner turf, getting trainer Chad Brown off to a nice start on a big weekend. After seven trips to the track, his only finish out of the top two was a 12th in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf in which he was caught in traffic and never really had a chance to run.
Flavius led from the early strides in Saturday's $120,000 Fasig-Tipton Lure Stakes at Saratoga and won by 1 1/2 lengths over Tell Your Daddy. It was a similar margin to Value Proposition in third.
Flavius, a 6-year-old Godolphin homebred by War Front out of the Dynaformer mare Starformer, ran 1 1/16 miles on firm going in 1:41.53. Flavien Prat rode for trainer Chad Brown, who also trains Value Proposition.
Although he's been close a couple times since, it was the first win for Flavius since the Tourist Mile at Kentucky Downs last September.
Filly & Mare Turf
War Like Goddess dawdled at the back of the seven-horse field in Saturday's $250,000 Grade II Glens Falls Stakes at Saratoga, got rolling outside rivals on the stretch turn and was up in time to win convincingly. My Sister Nat was second, 3 1/4 lengths back and a neck in front of Temple City Terror.
War Like Goddess, a 4-year-old daughter of English Channel, ran 1 1/2 miles on the firm inner turf course with Julien Leparoux riding in 2:27.55, more than 4 seconds off the 24-year-old record held by the immortal Awad. She has won five of six career starts.
Princess Grace split rivals heading for home in Saturday's $200,000 Grade II Yellow Ribbon Handicap at Del Mar, hustled to the lead and got home first by 1 1/4 lengths. Dogtag was best of the rest, 1 1/2 lengths better than Maxim Rate.
Princess Grace, a Karakontie filly trained by Michael Stidham, finished 1 1/16 miles on firm going in 1:40.84 with Kent Desormeaux up. She traveled from East Coast to win for the fifth time in six starts.
At Saratoga on Sunday, Regal Glory provided Chad Brown another turf winner, rallying from next-last to win the $120,000 Fasig-Tipton De La Rose Stakes for fillies and mares by 1/2 length.
Hendy Woods was second with Shifty She fading from the lead to finish third. The favorite, Viadora, another from Brown's bulging barn, got home fourth.
Regal Glory, a 5-year-old mare by Animal Kingdom, ran 1 mile on firm going in 1:34.85. She has eight wins from 14 starts and remains undefeated after three outings at the Spa.
Fast Boat rallied outside the early leaders through the final furlong of Friday's $200,000 Grade III Troy Stakes presented by Horse Racing Ireland at Saratoga, got by Caratori inside the final sixteenth and won by 1/2 length over that one. Gear Jockey was third.
Fast Boat, a 6-year-old City Zip gelding, ran 5 1/2 furlongs on firm going in 1:01.24 with Tyler Gaffalione riding. Joe Sharp trains the winner, who now has won three of his last four starts.
Filly & Mare Sprint
Bella Sofia pressed the pace in Saturday's $500,000 Grade I Test Stakes for 3-year-old fillies at Saratoga, took full command when the early leader folded in the stretch run and won off by 4 1/4 lengths.
Souper Sensational and the favorite, Search Results, both advanced from just behind the pace to finish second and third. Bella Sofia, a daughter of Awesome Patriot, was making just her fourth start and coming off a 6 1/2-lengths win in a Belmont Park allowance. Her only defeat was a second in the Jersey Girl Stakes at Monmouth Park.
"She was training good," trainer Rudy Rodriguez said of Bella Sofia. "You know when you draw the outside, you pretty much just let the jockey figure out what they want to do.
"She broke better than anybody. I thought she was going to be out front when she broke that good. She was nice and comfortable and she was running very well for him and when he asked her, she was there for him."
Pappacap waited behind dueling leaders in Saturday's $200,000 Grade II Best Pal Stakes at Del Mar, rallied by to take command a furlong from the finish and carried on to win by 4 3/4 lengths. Finneus was second, Bet On Mookie third and the favorite, Aquitania Arrival fifth.
Pappacap, a Gun Runner colt trained by Mark Casse, appeared to be looking for more as he finished 6 furlongs on a fast track in 1:11.66 under Joe Bravo.
Pappacap won his only previous start in May at Gulfstream Park, and Bravo said that effort "was pure speed. You don't know if that's the way they like to go. But he showed another dimension today."
Sunday's $100,000 Graduation Stakes at Del Mar was limited to California-breds, and Rock N Rye proved too much for three rivals, winning by 4 1/4 lengths. The Stay Thirsty colt ran 5 1/2 furlongs on a fast track under Umberto Rispoli, winning his second straight race.
Wicked Halo was the whole story in Sunday's $200,000 Grade II Adirondack Stakes at Saratoga. With Jose Ortiz at the controls, the Gun Runner filly took the point, disposed of a persistent Microbiome at the top of the lane and drove home first by 3 1/2 lengths.
Interstatedaydream and Saucy Lady T rallied from well back to finish second and third at long odds.
Wicked Halo ran 6 1/2 furlongs on a fast track in 1:17.99. She won her career debut at Lone Star Park June 5, then finished third in the Debutante at Churchill Downs in her only other start.
Trainer Steve Asmussen said Wicked Halo likely will skip the Grade I Spinaway on Sept. 5, adding, "I got overly aggressive with the mother and being fortunate to have the family continuously, you need to learn from it."
Friday's $200,000 Sorrento Stakes at Del Mar quickly turned into a two-filly race with Elm Drive seizing the lead, but shadowed every step by Eda. They raced that way into deep stretch when Eda gave it her best, but came up just a head short of the win.
It was another 13 1/4 lengths to the favorite, Smash Ticket, in third.
Elm Drive, a Mohaymen filly out of the Indian Charlie mare Lets Dance Charlie, ran 6 furlongs on a fast track in 1:10.64 with Juan Hernandez riding for trainer Phil Amato. She improved to 2-for-2.
Eda, a Munnings filly trained by Bob Baffert, won her only previous start.
On the Monmouth Park turf, first-time starter Her World went to the post as the odds-on favorite in Saturday's $104,000 Tyro Stakes and justified the punters' faith, winning by 6 lengths, well in hand by jockey Paco Lopez. Trust Our Journey beat the others.
Her World, an Irish-bred daughter of Caravaggio, finished 5 furlongs on firm turf in 56.62 seconds. Wesley Ward trains the filly who obviously is one to watch.
Around the world, around the clock
Ebro River, after chasing some top rivals through his recent starts, broke through with a gutsy victory in Sunday's Group 1 Keeneland Phoenix Stakes at the Curragh.
After setting a pressured pace through the first 4 furlongs of the 6-furlong tilt, the Galileo Gold colt was joined by half the field and challenged strongly before inching back to the front in the final yards to win by 3/4 length over Dr Zempf.
The favorite, Go Bears Go, was third and the two Coolmore runners, Prettiest and The Entertainer, were the final two finishers among eight.
The race was the first Group 1 of the European season and a good time for the Al Shaqab color-bearer to post his third win for trainer Hugo Palmer. Shane Foley had the ride just hours after partnering Cadillac to a ninth-place finish in the Saratoga Derby.
"He's never run a bad race, this horse," Paul Hensey, chief operating officer of owner Al Shaqab Raing, told Racing TV. "He's danced every dance. He's been at Newmarket. He's been at Goodwood and Royal Ascot and he's run a fantastic race here again today.
"We're in a very fortunate position in that we have three very good colts and we'll try to keep them out of each other's way."
Marianafoot, under Mickael Barzalona, rallied along the stand side of the Deauville course, found his best stride through the final 100 meters and won Sunday's Group 1Larc Prix Maurice de Gheest by 1 3/4 lengths. Extreme long shot Tropbeau was second with joint-favorite Starman third.
Marianafoot, a 6-year-old son of Footstepsinthesand, notched his eighth straight win, but first in Group 1 company.
Alpinista rallied smartly through the final furlong of Sunday's Group 1 Longines Grosser Preis von Berlin, easily got by pacesetting Walton Street and ran on to win by 2 3/4 lengths.
The favorite and last year's winner, Torquator Tasso, then edged Walton Street for second. Alpinista, with Luke Morris riding for trainer Sir Mark Prescott, improved to 3-for-3 this season while backing up her win in the Group 2 Lancashire Oaks at Haydock July 3. She is a 4-year-old Frankel filly.
Nicola Currie led the Ladies Team to victory in a close-fought renewal of the Dubai Duty Free Shergar Cup Saturday at Ascot Racecourse. Currie and teammates Hayley Turner and Mickaelle Michel held a 5-point lead going into the final race of the program, but with Irish riders finishing 1-2 in that event, it was Currie's third-place finish for 3 points that saved the day.
She earlier rode two winners for the Ladies Team, which amassed 69 points. Ireland was second with 66, Great Britain third with 64 and the Rest of the World squad was the back marker with 53 points.
Meanwhile, back in North America:
Sunday's $100,000 Oceanport Stakes was moved off the turf to the sloppy main track with five resulting scratches. Of the four left, only Raased mattered. The Tapit colt shadowed the early lead, moved to take over on the stretch turn and won off by 19 1/4 lengths.
Crown and Sugar was second, another 6 1/4 lengths in front of Island Commish. Ballagh Rocks completed the order of finish in an easy one for the placing judges. Raased splashed 1 1/16 miles in 1:44.43 with Heriberto Figueroa in the irons.
Champagne Affair was along late to take Friday's $50,000 Spotted Horse Stakes for fillies and mares by 3 3/4 lengths over Quikfast N Ahurry. The favorite, Shastaloo, finished another 4 lengths back in third.
Champagne Affair, a 4-year-old, Kentucky-bred Daredevil filly, ran 1 mile on a fast track in 1:39.11 with Pedro Cotto Jr. up.
While Bolshoi Ballet couldn't get the job done at Saratoga Saturday, Artful Ballerina performed to rave reviews across the border in the $80,000 (Canadian) Georgian Bay Stakes for Ontario-sired 3-year-old fillies.
The daughter of Town Prize waited patiently behind horses for jockey Emma-Jayne Wilson, overcame some trouble and went on to win by 2 lengths. Meet the Soprano was second and the odd-on favorite, Sunsprite, third. Artful Ballerina ran 5 furlongs on firm turf in 56.96 seconds.
Forest Survivor survived an early pace duel in Saturday's $80,000 Lake Huron Stakes for Ontario-sired 3-year-old colts and geldings and kicked clear to win by 1 3/4 lengths. Galveston was second, 1 1/2 lengths in front of Jocularity.
Forest Survivor, an Old Forester colt, was clocked in 57.33 seconds with Kazushi Kimura riding.
Kela's Turn stalked the pace in Saturday's $75,000 Hawkeyes Handicap for Iowa-bred fillies and mares, challenged when prompted by jockey Shane Laviolette and edged pacesetter Snappy Gal by a head under the wire.
It was another 6 lengths to Stonecold Stunner in third. Kela's Turn, a 3-year-old daughter of Kela, finished 1 1/16 miles on a fast track in 1:44.11
In the companion $75,000 Cyclones Handicap for state-bred colts and geldings, Net Gain came from next-last of five to win by 1 length over Catcha Real Smooth.
The early leader, Shweet Persuasion, settled for third. Net Gain, a 9-year-old Include gelding, ran 1 1/16 miles in 1:43.94. As ace racing analyst and fellow old guy Jude Feld has been heard to say, "Old guys rule."
Katie M'lady wasn't for caching in Saturday's $75,000 Sharon N. Kirby for Illinois-bred 3-year-old fillies, leading home stablemate and odds-on favorite Cat Attack by 2 1/4 lengths. Beyond Proper was third.
Katie M'lady, a Dominus filly, got 1 mile on firm turf in 1:37.57 with Julio Felix up. Michelle Boyce trains the top two.
Temper Tantrum got first run to the lead in Saturday's $75,000 Richard P. Hazelton Memorial for state-bred 3-year-olds and held on to win by 1 length from odds-on favorite Richiesgotgame. Valiant Vinny was third, giving trainer Larry Rivelli and owners Richard Ravin and Patricia's Hope LLC a sweep of the trifecta.
Temper Tantrum, a Flashback gelding, was timed in 1:37.45 with Chris Emigh up.
Lots of big doings on Saturday's West Virginia Derby undercard.
Logical Myth was up in the final strides to take the $75,000 House of Delegates Speaker's Cup by a neck from Monarch's Glen. Logical Myth, a 5-year-old Data Link gelding, got 1 mile and 70 yards on the firm turf in 1:38.42 with Corey Lanerie up.
Club Car came from last of five to win the $75,000 Secretary of State Stakes for fillies and mares by 2 1/4 lengths as the odds-on favorite. The Malibu Moon mare, with Lanerie up, ran 6 furlongs on the fast dirt track in 1:11.32.
The $75,000 Legislature Chairman's Cup was over in a blink as Williston Way outfinished Hollis by a head at the end of 4 1/2 furlongs, clocked in 52.45 seconds. Deshawn Park rode the winner.
Catch a Bid denied odds-on favorite Evil Lyn in the final furlong of the $75,000 Senate President's Cup for fillies and mares, defeating that rival by 2 1/2 lengths. Lanerie rode Catch a Bid, a 5-year-old Real Solution mare who covered 1 mile and 70 yards on the grass in 1:39.01.
Dark Oak took full command in the stretch run of the $75,000 Senator Robert C. Byrd Memorial, winning by 5 lengths over odds-on favorite Mount Travers. Sonny Leon had the ride as the 4-year-old Astrology gelding ran 6 furlongs on the dirt in 1:12.09.
Shea D Summer led, gave up the lead and came again to win Saturday's $75,000 Azalea Stakes for 3-year-old fillies by 3 1/4 lengths. Restofthestory was second with Competitive Speed third.
Shea D Summer, a daughter of Summer Front, ran 7 furlongs on a fast track in 1:23.11 with Emisael Jaramillo up.
Shared Sense stalked and pounced in Saturday's $60,000 Tri-State Stakes, getting clear in the late going to win by 3/4 length over Beau Luminaire. Beaver Hat got show money.
Shared Sense, a 4-year-old Street Sense ridgling owned and bred by Godolphin, finished 1 mile on a fast track in 1:36.30 for jockey Brian Hernandez Jr. and trainer Brad Cox.
It's a Wrap wrapped things up early in Saturday evening's $50,000 Evangeline Mile, opening a sizeable lead, and then coasting home first by 4 3/4 lengths. Boyfriend Material outfinished Rightandjust for second.
It's a Wrap, a 4-year-old Twirling Candy gelding, got home in 1:37.75 with Diego Saenz in the irons.
Golden Gate Fields
Avenue de France advanced from last of seven to win Saturday's $65,000 Luther Burbank Stakes for fillies and mares by a nose over Clockstrikestwelve. That one then was set down to sixth, promoting Star of Africa and the favorite, Dynasty of Her Own, to third and fourth.
Avenue de France, a 4-year-old, French-bred daughter of Cityscape, ran 1 1/16 miles on firm turf in 1:43.84 with Assael Espinoza in the irons.