Updated on 09/17/2011 2:06PM

Kaufy Mate stuns The Cliff's Edge

Tom Cooley
Kaufy Mate ($71.40) upsets the Sam F. Davis Stakes at Tampa Bay Downs on Saturday. It was the third win in five starts for the Florida-bred Diligence colt.

OLDSMAR, Fla. - Kaufy Mate, who disappointed when he broke slowly and ran seventh in the Pasco Stakes as the 3-2 betting choice here Jan. 17, rewarded those who stuck with him Saturday when he scored a hard-earned 1 3/4-length win over heavily favored The Cliff's Edge in the $100,000 at Tampa Bay Downs.

Under a heady ride by Ramsey Zimmerman, Kaufy Mate ($71.40) pressed pacesetter Misguided Left from the outset, rallied outside to take the lead leaving the second turn, then shook off challenges from The Cliff's Edge and Zakocity to edge clear late under strong handling.

The Cliff's Edge, winner of the Kentucky Jockey Club and Iroquois Stakes in his last two starts at 2, was the 1-2 favorite. He raced wide much of the trip, made a strong middle move to be in good position behind the leaders after six furlongs in 1:12.70 but couldn't sustain that rally under Shane Sellers while outfinishing second betting choice Zakocity by 1 1/2 lengths.

Misguided Left, who showed the way to midstretch, finished another two lengths back in fourth.

Kaufy Mate covered the 1 1/16 miles in 1:44.60 over a fast track.

For Kaufy Mate, it was his third win in five starts. The Davis is the local prep for next month's Grade 3 Tampa Bay Derby.

In the Pasco, Kaufy Mate missed the break, then had to be hustled for more than a half-mile to reach contention. He tired while making his first start since November.

A crowd of 5,571 wagered $522,037 ontrack with an all-sources handle of $4,731,222, a track record.

* In the co-featured Suncoast Stakes, for 3-year-old fillies, Ender's Sister ($5.80) found room between rivals in the stretch drive to defeat Fall Fashion by three-quarters of a length.