Updated on 09/17/2011 1:18PM

Bold Merit makes it five straight in Rainbow

Email
Jeff Coady/Coady Photography
Bold Merit wins the $50,000 Rainbow Stakes at Oaklawn Park on Sunday.

HOT SPRINGS, Ark. - Bold Merit won his fifth straight race Sunday when he moved to the Arkansas-bred ranks for the first time and cruised to a two and a quarter length win over Will's a Player in the $50,000 at Oaklawn Park.

Gun Town finished third in the six-furlong race for 3-year-olds, a length behind Will's a Player.

Bold Merit($2.60) broke sharp under regular rider Esteban Gomez and pushed pacesetter Buyah through an opening quarter in 21.98 seconds. Around the turn, Bold Merit raced between horses before taking over through a half-mile in 45.96 seconds. He went on to cover the distance in 1:11.32.

The track was rated sloppy after a rainstorm hit about a half-hour before the Rainbow. But the sudden change in the track condition did not worry Bryan Porter, who co-owns and trains Bold Merit.

"It was the same kind of surface he broke his maiden on, so I wasn't disappointed," he said. "I was smiling."

Bold Merit finished a troubled third in his debut, then won his maiden over a muddy track at Turf Paradise. He has not lost since, winning three stakes against open company at Turf Paradise before the Rainbow.

Bold Merit earned $30,000 for the win, which was his fifth victory from six career starts. He has earned $103,440 for Porter, Richard Kaalaas and Del Wilson.

In the $50,000 Rainbow Miss Stakes for 3-year-old fillies bred in Arkansas, K.J.'s Girl overtook 4-5 favorite Chene Rogue in the late stages for a three-quarter length win in the six-furlong race. Chene Rouge held second, two and three-quarter lengths in front of third-place finisher Time For Etbauer.

K J's Girl($12) raced about eight lengths behind Chene Rouge, who set fractions of 21.74 seconds for the opening quarter and 45.65 for the half-mile mark. K J's Girl rallied through the stretch, covering the distance over a sloppy track in 1:11.79.

Greta Kuntzweiler rode the winner for HoBeGo Racing and trainer Richard Jackson.

She earned $30,000 for the win, which was her second in two career starts. Her earnings now stand at $48,600.