08/17/2013 2:50PM

Arlington Park: Fordubai wins Straight Line under hustling Eddie Castro ride

Four Footed Fotos
Fordubai (left) overtakes Mongolian Saturday to win the Straight Line Stakes at Arlington.

ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. – Fordubai, it’s fair to say, is not the most willing racehorse. Three furlongs from the finish of the $66,800 Straight Line Stakes, the opening race on Arlington Million Day here, Fordubai held perfect position down at the rail and just behind battling leaders. The horse had no great interest staying there.

Jockey Eddie Castro began shaking Fordubai's reins, asking him to maintain his spot. At the quarter pole, before even turning into the stretch, Castro had resorted to his crop. But vigorous encouragement, evidently, is all Fordubai needs. He swung off the fence after straightening for the finish, pushing past pace-setting Mongolian Saturday to win by a neck.

“You just have to keep riding him,” said Castro, surprisingly fresh after working hard to win the Saturday opener.

Fordubai is worth the labor. An E Dubai colt bred and owned by Jim Tafel, Fordubai won for the fourth time in eight starts, and one of his defeats, a second-place finish to Departing in the Illinois Derby, was one of his best performances. Fordubai has a win on turf, a win and two seconds in three dirt starts, and won for the second time this summer on Arlington Polytrack.

“Turf, dirt, Polytrack – it doesn’t matter to him,” said winning trainer Greg Geier.

Mongolian Saturday ran decently in defeat, just yielding to the winner in the late going while finishing one length ahead of Cameo Appearance. Fordubai, who paid $6.80 as part of a favored entry (Street Spice, the other part of the entry, finished seventh), was timed in 1:37.97 for one mile.