11/20/2011 2:12PM

Aqueduct: Groomedforvictory connects for stakes score first start off the claim


 OZONE PARK, N.Y. – Sent off as the favorite for his first start since being claimed in February for $62,500, Groomedforvictory  rallied widest through the stretch and sustained a long rally to edge Johannesburg Smile by a head in Sunday’s $60,000 Adirondack Holme overnight stakes for New York-breds.

Groomedforvictory ($5.40) was close up toward the inside as Driven by Success set an easy pace of 24.00 and 47.32 seconds, was deftly maneuvered outside approaching the quarter pole by Ramon Dominguez, and finished determinedly to be along in time. The 6-year-old Groomedforvictory  ran one mile in 1:35.73, and improved to 4-2-0 from 7 career starts on the Big A’s main track.

Groomedforvictory was making his first start for meet-leading trainer Richard Dutrow Jr., who saddled his fourth winner of the weekend, following a three-bagger on Saturday.

Johannesburg Smile, the 2-1 second choice, held second by a1 ¼ lengths over 3-1 third choice Icabad Crane. The trifecta linking the three favorites in order paid $24.80.

Spa City Fever, Beautyinthepulpit, and Driven by Success completed the order of finish. Writingonthewall was scratched.