12/14/2013 5:15PM

Hollywood Park: Lucayan gets up in deep stretch to take Turf Cup

Benoit & Associates
Lucayan gets up to win the Hollywood Turf Cup despite lagging well back behind a pedestrian pace.

INGLEWOOD, Calif. - Lucayan will start his 2014 campaign as one of the leaders of California’s turf marathon division.

In his final start of 2013, Lucayan won for the first time in the United States, closing from last of six in Saturday’s $250,250 Hollywood Turf Cup at Betfair Hollywood Park. The Grade 2 Turf Cup was Lucayan’s first win since a career-defining victory in the Group 1 French 2000 Guineas at Longchamp, in Paris, in May 2012.

The French 2000 Guineas was over a mile, while the Turf Cup was over 1 1/2 miles. Lucayan’s 2014 campaign will be geared toward longer races, trainer Neil Drysdale said on Saturday.

In the Turf Cup, jockey Joel Rosario had Lucayan in last until the field reached the stretch for the final time. With a wide rally, Lucayan closed from third with a furlong remaining to finish a half-length in front of deep stretch leader Temeraine, the 7-5 favorite. Segway, who set a slow pace of 25.67 and 50.14 seconds for the first half-mile, finished third.

Lucayan ($5.40) was timed in 2:26.14.

Rosario said he was not concerned on the turn when Lucayan trailed by more than 4 1/2 lengths.

“He ran very well, but he’s one-paced and keeps going,” Rosario said. “I knew I could get there. I had to stay busy.”

The victory ended a streak of nine losses since the French 2000 Guineas.

“He showed a lot because there was no pace,” Drysdale said.

Lucayan won the third stakes of his career in the Turf Cup. A 4-year-old French-bred colt by Turtle Bowl, Lucayan has won 4 of 15 starts and earned $659,858.

Lucayan was winless in his first six starts in the United States earlier this year, a span that included a second in the Grade 2 Del Mar Handicap over 1 3/8 miles on turf in August. Lucayan was ninth in the Canadian International at Woodbine on Oct. 27, a race in which Temeraine was fifth.