11/03/2014 9:00PM

Isn’t He Clever leads gate to wire Veterans


Isn’t He Clever won the eighth stakes race of his career Monday, when he wired a field of older horses in the $55,000 Veterans at Zia Park in Hobbs, N.M. He drew clear by three lengths over Forest Mouse, while it was another neck back in third to Ol Winedrinker Who.

The Veterans is a stepping-stone to the $150,000 Zia Park Distance Championship on Nov. 26, and that race is a goal for both Isn’t He Clever and Forest Mouse, according to their trainer, Henry Dominguez.

Isn’t He Clever ($4.60) controlled the pace Monday, doling out fractions of 24.56 seconds for the opening quarter, 48.53 for the half-mile, and 1:12.24 for six furlongs while chased by Smack Ridge. Isn’t He Clever increased his advantage through the stretch to cover the 1 1/16 miles on a fast track in 1:42.73.

Enrique Gomez was aboard Isn’t He Clever for owners J. Kirk and Judy Robison.

Isn’t He Clever was winning his second straight stakes in the Veterans, having captured the $100,000 Downs at Albuquerque Handicap in track-record time Sept. 21. He has now won 11 of 24 starts and $737,085. Isn’t He Clever is a 5-year-old by Smarty Jones and was bred in Kentucky by Monticule.