10/13/2013 7:33PM

Fresno: Fire With Fire wins Bull Dog Handicap by disqualification


Fire With Fire got his first win on dirt and the second stakes win of his career in the $75,400 Bull Dog Handicap at Fresno on Sunday after first-place finisher Positive Response was disqualified for stretch interference.

Positive Response, ridden by Russell Baze, crossed the wire a length ahead of Fire With Fire and stopped the clock for 1 1/8 miles on a fast track in 1:49.76. But Positive Response, who had rallied from last in the field of six 3-year-olds and up, was demoted to fourth place after bumping Hudson Landing hard in midstretch.

Fire With Fire, ridden by Juan Hernandez, was in fourth place for most of the race as Batti Man and the favored Blueskiesnrainbows dueled through a quarter-mile in 22.76 seconds, a half-mile in 46.09, and six furlongs in 1:11.26. Fire With Fire ($10.60) rallied to take a half-length lead at the head of the lane before being overtaken by Positive Response.

Fire With Fire, trained by Neil Drysdale for David Heerensperger, has won four of 26 starts and earned $335,644. The 5-year-old Distorted Humor gelding got his first stakes win in August in the $52,400 Joseph T. Grace Handicap on turf at Santa Rosa. He entered Sunday’s race off a runner-up finish to Blueskiesnrainbows in the $100,000 Ralph M. Hinds Handicap last month at Barretts at Fairplex.

Prior to Sunday’s race, Fire With Fire was 0 for 4 on fast dirt tracks.