12/18/2011 6:04PM

Gulfstream: Summer Front overcomes bad start to take Dania Beach

Bob Coglianese
The 2-year-old Summer Front, ridden by Ramon Dominguez, remains unbeaten by taking the $100,000 Dania Beach.

HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla.-   Summer Front stumbled badly leaving the starting gate but was able to overcome his adversity and remain undefeated after rallying to a game 1 1/2-length victory over the 8-5  Finale in Sunday’s $100,000 Dania Beach Stakes at Gulfstream Park.

Summer Front, who had won his two previous starts,  including the King Cugat overnight stakes at Aqueduct, recovered quickly following his unlucky start to race within easy striking range albeit in tough position between horses down the backstretch. With regular rider Ramon Dominguez aboard, Summer Front angled wider to commence his rally on the final turn and then outkicked Finale to the wire in the final furlong.

Finale was hung three wide prompting the pace, challenged through midstretch but could not match strides with the winner at the end.  Excaper, runner-up in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf, forced the issue throughout but lacked the necessary closing response.

Summer Front, a 2-year-old son of War Front, is trained by Christophe Clement for Thomas Moore’s Waterford Stable. He completed the distance in 1:35.57 over a firm course and paid $10.20.

“I was a little worried when he drew the nine post because it’s tough to win from an outside post going a mile over this turf course,” said Clement. “We’ll put him away for now and dream a little bit in the winter. I didn’t think he was quite strong enough to run on the dirt in September but he trains well over it so we might possibly think about trying him on dirt this year.”

Dominguez flew down from New York to keep his regular seat aboard Summer Front in the Dania Beach.

“He stumbled pretty badly coming out of the gate and from there I just wanted to make sure I got him to settle behind horses,” said Dominguez. “The plan was to follow Finale around there thinking me and him were the best two horses in the race.”