02/26/2011 6:39PM

Choragus wins stretch battle at Tampa

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Tom Cooley Photography
Choragus wins the Wayward Lass under Leandro Goncalves.

OLDSMAR, Fla. - Ranging up four wide out of the second turn, Choragus dueled through a long drive before coming away with a hard-earned, three-quarter-length win over C C’s Pal in the $50,000 Wayward Lass Stakes at Tampa Bay Downs.

Under a well judged ride by Leandro Goncalves, Choragus advanced steadily after a half-mile of the 1 1/16-mile Wayward Lass, then angled outside leaving the second turn to challenge C C's Pal, who had taken over the lead after six furlongs. The pair battled through the stretch head and head until Choragus edged ahead nearing the wire.

C C's Pal was clearly second best in the field of eight fillies and mares, 4 1/4 lengths to the good of 17-10 favorite Striking Dancer, who held a striking position into the stretch but failed to respond when set down by Willie Martinez. Volare Centare ran fourth after gaining a short lead in the second.

Choragus returned $6.40 as the second choice in the field. The Tony Reinstedler trainee was timed in 1:44.39.