06/01/2013 6:19PM

Belmont Park: King Kreesa sets comfortable pace, powers home in Kingston Stakes

Adam Coglianese/NYRA
King Kreesa scores a front-running, 2 1/4-length victory in the $125,000 Kingston Stakes.

ELMONT, N.Y. – The old racing adage pace makes the race was clearly evident in Saturday’s $125,000 Kingston Stakes at Belmont Park as the front-running King Kreesa was able to get away with comfortable early fractions on his way to a 2 1/4-length victory in the race for New York-breds on the turf.

Under Irad Ortiz Jr., King Kreesa maintained a length advantage through a half-mile in 47.71 seconds – two seconds slower than the fractions he set when third in the Grade 3 Fort Marcy – before powering home his final quarter in 22.74 to cover the mile in 1:33.99. He returned $8.60 to win.

Kharafa, who steadied and came off the rail under Rajiv Maragh in deep stretch, finished second by a half-length over Lubash, the 9-5 favorite. Street Game, Abilio, Sneaky Kitten, Lightning Stone, and Minnie Punt completed the order of finish.

“He can carry his speed, even if he goes fast, but today I thought he had some nice breaks,” said Jeremiah Englehart, who trains King Kreesa for Susan and Gerald Kresa . “The fractions were a couple of ticks slower. I think that made a big difference.”

This was the fourth win from 13 career starts for King Kreesa, a gelding by King Cugat. Three of his wins have come at Belmont, and he also finished second in the Grade 1 Jamaica last year, also at Belmont.

On Saturday, King Kreesa was facing New York-breds for the first time since last August, when he was beaten a neck by Sportswriter in a New York Stallion Stakes race at Saratoga.

“I knew all along I wanted to run him in New York-bred races, but I knew it wasn’t like he’s getting a breather from the other races he was in,” Englehart said. “Lubash is a nice horse. Those horses are going to be knocking heads all year long. I’m sure we’re going to give them some wins. Hopefully, they’ll give us one or two more.”

Tony More than 1 year ago
Way to go Miah, congrats on a great job with KREESA