09/24/2011 5:53PM

Kentucky Cup: Matthewsburg loops field to win Sprint at Turfway


FLORENCE, Ky. – Trainer Mike Maker didn’t give Victor Lebron any instructions in the paddock before Lebron rode Matthewsburg in Saturday’s Grade 3, $100,0000 Speightstown Kentucky Cup Sprint at Turfway Park. Maker was occupied at the time, watching his trainee Derby Kitten on television win the Ontario Derby at Woodbine.

No instructions were apparently needed. Lebron, the colt’s regular rider, allowed Matthewsburg to settle comfortably in the back of the pack behind a hotly contested pace, and Matthewsburg did the rest, blowing past the rest of the field with a wide rally to prevail by 2 1/4 lengths.

Philippe, who took the lead in early stretch after stalking the pace, narrowly outfinished stablemate and pacesetter Will’s Wildcat for the place.

“Dream trip, everything went our perfect way,” said Lebron.

The same wasn’t the case for a few Sprint competitors, including Will’s Wildcat, who was hounded on the lead by Song of Humor through splits of 21.96 seconds and 45.13 in the six-furlong race.

Others ran into traffic trouble, most notably Lou Brissie, who was checked on the turn.

Matthewsburg, a 3-year-old son of Ghostzapper owned by Tom and Matt Conway, raced six furlongs in 1:10.28 over a track largely producing slow times. He paid $20.60.

A non-factor in the Sprint was favored Cal Nation, who in his first start on a synthetic surface was dull early and only managed to pass tired horses on his way to a sixth-place finish.