10/02/2011 6:15PM

Belmont: Shkspeare Shaliyah goes from last to first in Pilgrim

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Barbara D. Livingston
Shkspeare Shaliyah rallies to take the Pilgrim, but his connections would have to pay a $100,000 supplemental fee for him to go to the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf.

ELMONT, N.Y. - Despite a pedestrian pace, Shkspeare Shaliyah rallied from last under Alex Solis to win Sunday’s Grade 3, $100,000 Pilgrim Stakes by one length at Belmont Park.

 The win was the second consecutive victory for Shkspeare Shaliyah after he finished a late-running third in his debut at Saratoga. He gave trainer Doodnauth Shivmangal his first graded stakes victory. Shivmangal is also part owner of the horse along with members of his family.

  Shivmangal said he would like to run Shkspeare Shaliyah in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf at Churchill Downs, but the horse is not Breeders’ Cup nominated and it would cost $100,000 to supplement to the race. Shivmangal said he wants to see how the horse comes out of the race before deciding whether to pay the exorbitant fee.

 Shivmangal was quite confident in his 2-year-old’s chances to win the Pilgrim, especially after he walked him Sunday morning.

 “This morning, after I gave him a bath and put him in the stall, he was eager to go,’’ Shivmangal said. “We thought he might break through the webbing. I told everyone he is not going to lose, I know this horse. He is the best horse I have ever trained. He is very professional.”

 Under Alex Solis, Shkspeare Shaliyah trailed the compact field of six until they field turned for home when he powered down the center of the Belmont inner turf course and outfinished Kitten’s Kid, who was rallying from next to last.

 Shkspeare Shaliyah, a son of Shakespeare, was credited with a final time of 1:51.59 for the 1 1/16 miles. He returned $6.80 to win.

“They were walking because the track is very loose,’’ Solis said. “He is a very special horse; he has a tremendous turn of foot. I had him relaxed the first part in behind the speed. I got him to the top of the stretch and I asked him and he finished really strong.”

 Fantastic Song, the 8-5 favorite, finished third and was followed by Captain Webb, Knock Rocm, and Fox Rules. State of Play, the morning-line favorite, scratched.