Updated on 09/17/2011 9:41AM

Bombs away!

Point Prince, Manoel Cruz up, is the 1 1/4-length winner over Krieger in the Appleton 'Cap.

HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. - Point Prince continued the upset trend that has characterized the opening of the 2003 Gulfstream Park stakes schedule when he outfinished Krieger to post an unlikely 1 1/4-length victory in Saturday's $150,000 before a crowd of 15,137.

Point Prince, a former $12,500 claimer who was pulled up and vanned off following his only previous stakes start, paid $60.60 after winning the Grade 2 Appleton for trainer Dale Romans and the Team Valor Stable. His victory came on the heels of 17-1 Baileys Edge's triumph in the Grade 3 Mr. Prospector Handicap earlier on the card. First Blush opened the 2003 Gulfstream Park season by capturing the Grade 3 Spectacular Bid Stakes at 11-1 on Friday.

Point Prince was purchased last year by Barry Irwin and Team Valor from owner Raul Maestre, who had claimed Point Prince for $12,500 out of his first career start in December 2001 at Calder.

Ridden to perfection in the mile turf stakes by Manoel Cruz, Point Prince rated off the pace set by Krieger and forced by North East Bound and 9-5 favorite Balto Star. Point Prince slipped through along the hedge while advancing around the second turn, eased out to continue his bid entering the stretch, overtook Krieger near the eighth pole, and gradually edged clear.

Krieger dug in gamely when he was headed by the winner but could not match strides in the closing yards. He did hold second place by a neck over the late-striding Red Sea. Balto Star tired badly and finished eighth in a scratch-reduced field of nine older turf specialists. Point Prince was timed in 1:37.84 over good turf.

Romans said that Team Valor management "had sent the horse to California for the summer, so I didn't have him when he was eased in the stakes" - referring to the Cinema Breeders' Cup Handicap - "although I understand he had a problem with a sore in his mouth and that's why he was pulled up. It wasn't a physical problem."

"On paper it looked like he was overmatched," said Romans, who won three races on Saturday's card, "but he's been training great, and sometimes you have to take a shot when a horse is doing this good. Although this was certainly a lot more than we expected of him."