08/03/2016 7:54PM

Green With Eddie wins Graduation Stakes

Benoit & Associates
Green With Eddie wins the Graduation Stakes by 3 1/4 lengths.

DEL MAR, Calif. – Green With Eddie ($4.60) won his first stakes in his third start and ended a 34-race losing streak for trainer Doug O’Neill in Wednesday’s $100,000 Graduation Stakes for California-bred juveniles at Del Mar.

Ridden by Mario Gutierrez, Green With Eddie raced four wide for the first half-mile before drawing off to win by 3 1/4 lengths as the favorite in a field of six. Green With Eddie was timed in 1:03.62 for 5 1/2 furlongs.

The Graduation Stakes was Green With Eddie’s second start in a stakes. He was second to California Diamond in the Santa Anita Juvenile on July 9.

California Diamond finished second in the Graduation Stakes after dueling for the early lead with the O’Neill-trained Sizzlin Square through early fractions of 21.57 seconds for the opening quarter-mile and 45.09 for a half-mile.

California Diamond yielded the lead to Green With Eddie in early stretch and finished a length in front of Milton Freewater, also trained by O’Neill.

Exotic Ghost finished fourth, followed by Sizzlin Square and Tchula Sunset.

In the Santa Anita Juvenile, Green With Eddie raced inside of California Diamond in the race at 5 1/2 furlongs and faced pressure throughout. The roles were reversed in the Graduation, much to O’Neill’s delight.

“He was able to track and attack as opposed to being the target,” O’Neill said.

Owned by breeders Paul and Zillah Reddam, Green With Eddie has won 2 of 3 starts and earned $115,600. The colt is by Square Eddie. O’Neill said Green With Eddie could prove to be effective at longer distances.

“He’s got the talent,” he said. “I think he’ll go two turns.”

O’Neill had three winners on the opening weekend of the Del Mar summer meeting July 15-17. His stable struggled in the last two weeks of July before Wednesday’s win.

“We’ve been cold as can be,” he said. “It takes one to get things going the right way.”