09/22/2017 4:21PM

Battle Station transfers turf form to dirt to win Bertram F. Bongard Stakes

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Chelsea Durand/NYRA
Battle Station and jockey Kendrick Carmouche win the Bertram F. Bongard Stakes by 9 1/4 lengths.

ELMONT, N.Y. – For the second time in 48 hours, a horse who won its career debut on turf at Saratoga won a New York-bred stakes on dirt at Belmont Park in its second start.

On Friday, Battle Station took command soon after the start under Kendrick Carmouche and galloped to a 9 1/4-length victory in the $150,000 Bertram F. Bongard Stakes over even-money favorite Inalienable Rights. It was 7 3/4 lengths farther back to What a Catch in third. Ultimateenticement finished fourth, 12 1/2 lengths in front of Alien Invasion.

Battle Station’s victory came two days after Held Accountable won the $150,000 Joseph A. Gimma Stakes here by 2 1/4 lengths. Both Held Accountable and Battle Station won sprinting on turf at Saratoga.

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The start of the Bongard was delayed when Battle Station charged the gate, opening up his doors. That also prompted What a Catch, to the outside of Battle Station, to break through the gate and try to run off, but assistant starter Miguel Ramirez did a remarkable job of holding onto What a Catch, preventing him from running off. Ramirez had to be taken to a local hospital with shoulder pain.

After the delay, Battle Station was still eager to get going as he jumped first out of the gate, opened up a one-length advantage over What a Catch through an opening quarter of 22.94 seconds, and widened that lead through a half-mile in 45.94 and six furlongs in 1:11.30. He ran seven furlongs ion 1:24.83.

Battle Station, a son of Warrior’s Reward owned by Ken and Sarah Ramsey and trained by Wesley Ward, returned $12.20 to win.

“I’ve been working this horse since Saratoga, so I knew he could dirt, too,” Carmouche said. “With Wesley training and how he gets his 2-year-olds ready, nine times out of 10, they can do either or.”