12/31/2016 4:58PM

Heaven's Runway outraces Chief Lion in Dave's Friend

Heaven's Runway paid $7.00 in winning the Dave's Friend Stakes.

Heaven's Runway, who broke a 17-month dry spell by scoring a 32-1 upset in the Fall Highweight at Aqueduct in his last start, began a winning streak Saturday at Laurel Park by running down pacesetting Chief Lion in the final sixteenth to take the $100,000 Dave's Friend Stakes.

Heaven's Runway, a deep closer in the bulk of his races, was never farther back than 2 1/2 lengths in the Dave's Friend, one of five stakes on the Laurel card. He raced three wide to the stretch under Cornelio Velasquez, and then steadily closed in the stretch to defeat even-money favorite Chief Lion by a half-length. He paid $7 and covered the six furlongs in 1:09.74.

Sir Rockport, who raced just inside the winner early, dropped back a bit and then came on again to finish finished third, a length behind Chief Lion and a nose ahead of Chublicious, who finished fourth.

Heaven's Runway, 6, is trained by Rudy Rodriguez, who claimed him for $62,000 at Saratoga. Heaven's Runway is now 7 for 42 in his career.

Prior to the Fall Highweight, Heaven's Runway had not won since the Hockessin Stakes at Delaware Park in July 2015. He is now a three-time stakes winner. He also won the Fitz Dixon Memorial at Presque Isle Downs as a 2-year-old in 2012.

Measure, 7-1, was bumped solidly from both sides at the start.

Thirty Eight Go Go: High Ridge Road upsets By the Moon
High Ridge Road won her first career stakes in the $100,000 Thirty Eight Go Go, upsetting 3-5 favorite By the Moon by a half-length in the one-mile race for fillies and mares.

High Ridge Road, trained by Linda Rice, missed by a nose in her last start, the Grade 2 Go for Wand at Aqueduct. She is now 4 for 10 in her career. The Thirty Eight Go Go is the local prep for the Grade 2, $300,000 Barbara Fritchie, a seven-furlong race for fillies and mares, on Feb. 18.

By the Moon stalked the early pace through fractions of 23.71 and 46.76. She took the lead leaving the five-sixteenths pole, drew clear, but was headed by the winner from the outside in upper stretch. High Ridge Road, who had been fanned four wide into the far turn, remained well out in the track into the stretch. She continued doggedly once gaining the lead to hold the advantage.

Ansible finished third, 10 lengths behind By the Moon.

High Ridge Road, ridden by Horacio Karamanos, paid $6 as the second choice in the eight-horse field. She was timed in 1:35.58 and covered her final furlong in 12.59 seconds.