02/21/2015 4:06PM

Bet Seattle outruns Delaunay in Duncan Kenner

Alexander Barkoff/Hodges Photography
Bet Seattle, under Francisco Torres, surpasses $400,000 in earnings by winning the Duncan Kenner.

Delaunay has been the king of Fair Grounds dirt sprints, but he was dethroned Saturday by Bet Seattle in the $56,400 Duncan Kenner Stakes.

Bet Seattle broke like a rocket from the outside gate in a field reduced to four by the scratches of Bellarmine, Jasizzle, and Nates Mineshaft, clearing Delaunay before an eighth of a mile had been run. He set moderate splits of 21.80 and 45.16 seconds, and held on to win by three-quarters of a length, with Delaunay home 2 1/4 lengths ahead of Too Dim, who broke terribly and closed with good energy. Take It Like a Man was a distant last.

Bet Seattle paid $7 to win and was timed in 1:09.83.

A 6-year-old owned and trained by Hugh Robertson, Bet Seattle is in career-best form, and he, too, has an affinity for Fair Grounds, with three wins and a third from four starts here.

“He’s a big horse, but he’s so light on his feet,” said winning rider Francisco Torres.

Bet Seattle summers at Arlington, and he has raced extensively on turf and synthetics: This was just his 14th career dirt start, and he has won half of them.

“I thought we’d be in front – he’s very fast – but I was surprised he made an easy lead like that,” said Robertson. “He’s a funny horse: You can’t hit him. Cisco just cocked his stick at him today, and he started swishing his tail.”

It’s a minor quirk. Bet Seattle surpassed $400,000 in career earnings in the Kenner, and was purchased for a song. Robertson can live with it.