02/09/2014 7:40PM

Gulfstream Park: Lochte rides rail to upset in Gulfstream Park Turf Handicap

Barbara D. Livingston
Orlando Bocachica celebrates aboard Lochte after getting the first Grade 1 victory of his riding career in the Gulfstream Park Turf Handicap on Sunday.

HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. – Lochte stunned a big Sunday crowd with a 39-1 upset in giving his connections their first Grade 1 victory in the $300,000 Gulfstream Park Turf Handicap, the race that directly preceded the Donn Handicap.

Lochte raced just a few lengths off the pace before bursting through a rail opening after turning for home in the 1 1/8-mile race, finishing 2 3/4 lengths before Imagining, who rallied from well back. Orlando Bocachica was aboard the 4-year-old gelding, who returned $80.60 as the longest shot in a field of eight older horses.

“I had a very good trip,” Bocachica said.

Amira’s Prince, making his first start in more than 10 months, was third, three-quarters of a length behind Imagining and a neck before Tetradrachm, who set the pace for most of the trip.

“I thought we had a shot going in, and I thought his numbers were going up, and up, and up,” said an elated Marcus Vitali, who trains Lochte for Crossed Sabres Farm. “I want to go to Disneyland.”

For Vitali, who moved to Florida several years ago after spending most of his 25-year training career in New England, it was his first triumph in a graded stakes. For Bocachica, a native of Puerto Rico who has ridden in the United States since 1999, it was his first Grade 1 win and just his third in a graded event.

Lochte, a Kentucky-bred by Medaglia d’Oro, was coming off a 3 1/2-length victory in a first-level allowance on the Gulfstream turf. To the vast majority of horseplayers, that form paled in comparison to that of the favorites, many of them with a wealth of graded experience.

[Clocker Reports: Get Mike Welsch’s clocker reports from Gulfstream Park and Palm Meadows]

After the top four, the order was Nikki’s Sandcastle, Charming Kitten, Summer Front, and Boisterous. Summer Front was the 2-1 favorite and never threatened.

The $2 exacta (1-7) paid $381.60, the $1 trifecta (1-7-6) returned $951, and the 10-cent superfecta (1-7-6-2) was worth $419.38.

Gunner More than 1 year ago
So we had a horse that had won 2 of his last three with one coming at 1 7/16 miles - reasonable to assume that distance would not be a problem. And said horse gets a ground saving rail run around both turns - sounds good so far. The lone speed tires at the Top o the Stretch and drifts out to the three path giving Lotche a path that any Semi-truck could fly through. And Lotche explodes when roused to open up three lengths before they hit the furlong marker as the best closer - Imagining - must go five wide (never good at GP) and can only make the final margin respectable. I think the winner deserves a bit more respect than he is getting. He was 15-1 on the M/L - that he shot up to 39-1 is no reason to say this was some sort of sucker-punch. Altho, the horse had punch, and apparently, there were a lot of suckers.
Frank Raspy More than 1 year ago
Lochte - but we get the point... I think!
Rob Yetman More than 1 year ago
American trainers ought to be glad that Aidan O'Brien and his Ballydoyle stable take the winter off. Their 20th string could have won this race.
Wonderagain More than 1 year ago
How come none of the public handicapper's picked Lochte off his huge nwx1 win over the course? Who'd Little Andy pick on the Fox broadcast? My DVR inexplicably didn't record the show. If I was an owner of a turf horse w/o a maiden win under the care of trainer Kiaran Mclaughlin, I immediately switch trainers to Marcus J. Vitali and point to the Breeders Cup. With Vitali's Orlando Bocachica riding, we'd be unstoppable. I'm sure Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum and his advisors are considering their options.
kenne Walk More than 1 year ago
goodig post on bay91
Robin Cardoza More than 1 year ago
This horse was very usable and some of us did use him in every ticket but didn't use another horse that got 2nd!! Ugh! This horse was on the improve, lightly raced and bred for this. I was there when he sold in October. Thought they were nuts to get rid of this guy as his previous races weren't that bad and he ran against nice horses. Some horses take a little longer and we have seen this happen so many times it shouldn't be rocket science. Beyers may have been lower but they were improving up the scale with every race. And I don't think Beyers mean as much as they did in the past. Just look at improving form!! And if you ever get on horses you might know they like certain people better than others and perform for some and not others. He found his place in this world and congratulations to his new connections. They had faith in him.
Vince Piscitelli More than 1 year ago
Two things: 1. I will never understand in a million billon years why someone would NOT bet a 40-1 shot to WIN before they even think of exotics. 2. Two additional handicapping angles with this horse. Dropping 10lbs, off a good race; projected to sit a golden trip - which he did. If it were not for religious reasons, even I may have put a buck or two on him. Vince P
James Mcrae More than 1 year ago
great pedigree horse is a gelding and is probably just starting to get right lets see if hes as good down the road or just a flash in the pan
Vince Lentini More than 1 year ago
I always find it interesting how AFTER the race almost everyone had the 35-1......
uwgb08 More than 1 year ago
Based on his last race, Lochte fit in with this field. His last race was more impressive than Summer Front's (timing wise.) Lochte's last race was a mile and a sixteenth in 1:41 and 4/5ths. Summer Front in the Ft. Lauderdale, 1:42 and 1/5. But the most impressive part was the stretch run. Lochte's last race he finished up in 28 and 2/5. Summer Front in the Ft. Lauderdale was 30 seconds even. And look at the breeding. Madaglia d' Oro, out of a Lemon Drop Kid mare. Screams long on the turf. Plus a $475,000 price tag. The connections obviously thought this horse was gonna have some ability. So was this race an upset? Sure. But a fluke? No.
Kendall Daniels More than 1 year ago
Thank you for this. Lochte's form fit with this group. Just because someone didn't use him or like his chances doesn't mean it was a fluke. Maybe a person needs to reevaluate their handicapping techniques instead of declaring a horse a fluke.
Vince Lentini More than 1 year ago
please don't tell me you are using time on different days...please
uwgb08 More than 1 year ago
ok, well what about today? Speed was golden on the turf today. Frontrunners had been cruising. Yet in this race he exploded by them when he got room. And he was basically the only one finishing. He ran by them easily.
Edward Nelson More than 1 year ago
Comparing times of races means absolutely nothing unless they run on the same day. And you quoted speed was golden on the turf course this day but you falied to mention on the other 2 turf races, that the 2 winners were both race favorites on the lead withoutbing tested. So throw that comment out the window too. As far as the winner of this race, i was impressed the way he powered away from the field. I dont think it was a fluke.
dameian ramsay More than 1 year ago
This horse has great pedigree and he had a perfect trip tucked in on the rail behind the leaders then the rail parted like the red sea when the 2horse drifted to his right .I still think the 7 horse imaging was the best horse. Hrs a stalker and Rosario took him to the back of the pack then he had to circle the whole field while locte hsd the rail the whole trip. Horrible ride by Rosario who is a top notch jockey
uwgb08 More than 1 year ago
Ok, since no one cares about time and stuff. Do you care about common opponents? Tetradrachm ran in the Ft. Lauderdale and this race. In the Ft. Lauderdale, Summer Front (who I like) had just enough to get by Tetradrachm. In this race Lochte went by him like Tetradrachm was running in mud (by the way, Tetradrachm had a clear, lonely lead, just like the maiden winner that day. Plus got easier early fractions.) I guess my point is, I agree with you that I don't think it was a fluke. Everybody making a big deal about it like Lochte blew by Wise Dan or something. This wasn't a tremendous field, and I think that Lochte showed that he can compete with these sorts.
Matthew Ellis More than 1 year ago
Mr. Jenney who beat Lochte convincingly before his maiden breaker in December couldn't work with SUMMER FRONT both from the Clement barn . This greatness has been developed in 1 month IMPOSSIBLE !!
dameian ramsay More than 1 year ago
We'll find out Down the road if this was a fluke. He has the pedigree to b a great horse
Matthew Ellis More than 1 year ago
We cant just say he really stepped up today looked great its certain trainers/stables Etc. Something is going on these performances are unreal ( Look at the visual and the times ) IS this a great horse ? Only now today at 35-1 just quit dismissing these races as ???