07/09/2017 1:17PM

Dr Blarney earns 5th Suffolk Downs victory in row


Dr Blarney has been unstoppable at Suffolk Downs, and he extended his winning streak at the Boston, Mass.-area track to five Sunday while overpowering a field of Massachusetts-breds to win the $50,000 Rise Jim Stakes.

The 4-year-old Dublin gelding broke from the outside gate in the field of five, and was put on the lead by jockey Tammi Piermarini. They were met with initial pressure from Grady, but had easily discarded that competition when they clocked the opening quarter in 22.76 seconds.

Piermarini sat comfortably on Dr Blarney through the turn, while Grady and Goodbyeguinnessbok inched closer and got themselves to within 2 1/2 lengths of the leader after an opening half in 46.08 seconds. Neither horse could mount any kind of rally, though, while Dr Blarney added lengths to his inevitable winning margin.

Piermarini asked little of her mount during the stretch run, instead peeking under her shoulders repeatedly to check for oncoming threats. There were none, and Dr Blarney coasted to the wire nine lengths ahead of Grady. Worth the Worry, who finished second in last year’s Rise Jim, finished third, a half-length behind the runner-up.

Dr Blarney stopped the clock in the six-furlong race in 1:10 flat over a fast main track. He paid $2.10 to win as the overwhelming favorite.

The gelding races as a Massachusetts homebred for Joseph DiRico, and he is trained by Karl Grusmark. The owner, trainer, and jockey teamed up on Saturday to win the African Prince Stakes at Suffolk Downs with Saint Alfred.

Sunday’s Rise Jim score improved Dr Blarney’s lifetime record to nine wins in 13 starts for earnings of $286,520.

All five of Dr Blarney’s wins at Suffolk Downs have come in stakes company against his fellow state-breds. He took the Norman Hall Stakes as a juvenile in 2015, then returned last year to sweep the African Prince, Last Dance, and John Kirby Stakes. Prior to the Rise Jim, Dr Blarney had won all of his starts at Suffolk Downs by 10 lengths or more.