Updated on 09/17/2011 11:11AM

Charge beats the rain to win Caltech Handicap

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Bill Denver/Equi-Photo
Charge ($22.40) rallies under Eibar Coa to register a one length victory in Sunday's $75,000 Caltech Handicap at Gulfstream Park.

HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. - Charge beat the rain and seven other 3-year-olds to register a one length victory over 7-5 favorite Purely Classic in Sunday's $75,000 at Gulfstream Park.

With a light rain falling over an already soggy turf course, Charge rallied from just off a slow pace to run down Purely Classic in the final 70 yards of the one mile and one eighth Caltech. Heavier showers came down fifteen minutes after the completion of the Caltech.

Purely Classic forced the pace of Mr. Mississippi through fractions of :25.36 seconds, :52.33 and 1:17.46, opened a clear advantage at midstretch but could not withstand the winner. Color Me Gone rallied four wide to loom a threat leaving the final bend but could not sustain the bid.

Charge, making just the fourth start of her career and coming off a maiden win, paid $22.40. Her final time was 1:55.94 over a course officially rated as "good" but which appeared more on the soft side.

"I was just thinking hurry up and run this race before it really rains and they have to take it off the turf," said Shug McGaughey who trains Charge for owner breeder Wheelock Whitney. "She won't run at all on the dirt. This is a bit of an aggressive move for me moving right into a stakes off a maiden win but I didn't think Imitiation would start and if we didn't go in here we might not get to run him on the turf until May once we get to New York. If it didn't work out we could always go back to a one other than (allowance)."

Imitation, who would have been the 120 pound starting highweight and favorite, was one of three late scratches from the Caltech. Trainer Christophe Clement said earlier in the week he would not run his colt over anything but a firm course.