03/05/2007 1:00AM

Capt. Joe Blow solidifies status

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Capt. Joe Blow ($5.20) stamped himself the top 3-year-old sprinter on the Arizona circuit with a smart wire-to-wire win in Sunday's $45,000 Palo Verde Stakes at Turf Paradise.

Owned by Tom Said and trained by Lanny Sharp, Capt. Joe Blow jumped right out to a clear lead in the 6 1/2-furlong race, set fast splits and maintained a clear lead all the way to the wire, finishing two lengths ahead of In to the West under Glenn Corbett. Capt. Joe Blow ran the distance in 1:15.15. The winner's share of $27,000 pushed his career earnings to $81,380 from 4 wins in 7 starts. Those four wins - all in stakes - have come in his last five outings.

In to the West chased the winner all the way around but couldn't close the gap. He still finished 1 3/4 lengths ahead of Southern California invader Top Emblem. The race was marred when second choice Half Famous broke down going down the backside.