04/26/2009 12:00AM

Budge Man takes advantage in Bosselman


GRAND ISLAND, Neb. - Budge Man made the 14-hour haul from his base at Keeneland on Thursday worth the trip with by posting a 2 1/2-length score in the $75,000 Bosselman/Gus Fonner Stakes at Fonner Park on Saturday afternoon.

The connections of Budge Man had no intention of running in the race until the defection of Wayzata Bay earlier in the week and the prospect of a short field swayed trainer Kellyn Gorder and Lincoln, Neb., owners Whispering Pines to ship the son of Fusaichi Pegasus on short notice. Budge Man had not started since a seventh-place finish in the Grade 2 Indiana Derby last fall. He came out of that race with a quarter crack.

Prospective Kiss, trained by Randy Morse, moved to the front through the first turn of the mile and a sixteenth Bosselman and continued on a short lead into the stretch under Tommy Molina. Budge Man, ridden by leading rider Jesus Ponce, moved closer to the front-runners through the far turn, then poured it on in the stretch to move clear in at time of 1:45 over a fast track.

Budge Man returned $12 in the field of six while combining with Prospective Kiss for an exacta worth $50. Sebastian County, the 4-5 favorite trained by Don Von Hemel, lacked a closing kick and checked in third, another length and a quarter back. Von Hemel who once dominated the trainer ranks in the state, was on hand for the race.

Jonesboro was scratched from the race on Friday morning after being cross-entered in the Grade 3 Texas Mile at Lone Star where he reached millionaire status with his win. Defending champion The Nutz was declared from the race early Saturday after developing an abscess and a bruised foot late in the week.