10/28/2012 9:57AM

Delta Downs: Lee's Spirit pulls off 14-1 upset in Gold Cup

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Lee's Spirit, ridden by John Jacinto, collects his seventh career stakes win in the Gold Cup for Louisiana-breds.

Lee’s Spirit swept past a line of pacesetters into the stretch and went on to a 2 3/4-length win over Populist Politics in Saturday night’s $100,000 Gold Cup at Delta Downs.

“I tell you what, the race set up perfect,” said John Jacinto, who rode Lee’s Spirit.

The Gold Cup, a one-mile race for 3-year-olds and up bred in Louisiana, featured a three-way speed battlel as Unitas, Heavy On Themister,  and Well’s Gold were prominent through fractions of 22.97 seconds for the opening quarter, 47.57 for the half-mile, and 1:12.78 for six furlongs. Lee’s Spirit, meanwhile, settled in sixth, was full of run into the final turn, came four wide into the stretch, and proceeded to cover the distance on a fast track in 1:39.17.

Populist Politics closed up the rail for second, 1 1/4 lengths  clear of third-place finisher Heavy On Themister.

Lee’s Spirit ($30.80) won his seventh career stakes race in the Gold Cup. The start was his first for the partnership of Scott Boudreaux, Don Gaudet,  and Edward Johnston, who also trains Lee’s Spirit. Johnston said Lee’s Spirit would make his next start at Fair Grounds, which puts on its annual Louisiana Champions Day program of statebred stakes on Dec. 8.

Lee’s Spirit has now won 11 of 48 starts and $558,933.