02/07/2015 7:31PM

Finnegans Wake wins third consecutive stakes in San Marcos

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Finnegans Wake wins the San Marcos Stakes by a length Saturday at Santa Anita Park.

ARCADIA, Calif. – There is no doubt who leads California’s distance turf division this winter.

After winning the Grade 2 Hollywood Turf Cup at 1 1/2 miles Nov. 27 at Del Mar and the Grade 2 San Gabriel Stakes at 1 1/8 miles on turf Jan. 3, Finnegans Wake won his third consecutive stakes in Saturday’s $200,750 San Marcos Stakes at 1 1/4 miles on turf.

With his win, Finnegans Wake confirmed his brilliance to jockey Victor Espinoza.

“This horse is unbelievable,” Espinoza said. “He tries hard. The distance was not a problem. With the extra distance today, it was perfect.”

Finnegans Wake ($5.80) was timed in 2:00.88. The 6-year-old horse races for Donegal Racing and Rockingham Ranch and is trained by Peter Miller.

Finnegans Wake closed from last in a field of eight to catch the pacesetter Diamond Bachelor in the stretch, winning by a length. Diamond Bachelor held second but was disqualified and placed fourth for drifting out in the stretch and interfering with the fourth-place finisher Power Foot. After an inquiry, the stewards demoted Diamond Bachelor from second to fourth, resulting in the promotion of Power Ped to second and Power Foot to third.

Dynamic Sky finished fifth, followed by Little Jerry, Patrioticandproud and Majestic Harbor.

Diamond Bachelor led by more than six lengths when the field reached the stretch for the first time and set early fractions of 24.01 seconds for the opening quarter-mile and 48.27 for a half-mile. Diamond Bachelor, the 46-1 longest shot on the field, led by eight lengths after six furlongs. The lead began to diminish on the turn and was down to two lengths with a furlong remaining.

Espinoza said he thought Finnegans Wake would have little difficultly catching Diamond Bachelor in the final sixteenth.

“I felt like I could catch him anytime I wanted,” Espinoza said.

Finnegans Wake joined Miller’s stable in late summer, having previously been trained by Dale Romans. Last November, Finnegans Wake finished 10th behind Main Sequence in the Breeders’ Cup Turf here Nov. 1.

He has not lost since.