03/12/2011 5:56PM

Kentucky Derby favorite Uncle Mo wins 3-year-old debut, remains undefeated


Uncle Mo, last year’s juvenile champion, kicked off his 3-year-old campaign in style with an approximate four-length victory in Saturday’s $100,000 Timely Writer Stakes at Gulfstream Park.

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Uncle Mo, who won last year’s Champagne and Breeders’ Cup Juvenile, remained undefeated from four starts for owner Mike Repole and trainer Todd Pletcher.

Breaking from the rail under John Velazquez, Uncle Mo ($2.10) bumped with Gallant Dreams leaving the gate, and dropped back a step. He quickly recovered, however, and assumed the lead under a snug hold while running fractions of 25.53 seconds for the quarter, 49.58 for the half, 1:13.69 for six furlongs, 1:24.94 for seven furlongs and 1:36.56 for the mile. Despite receiving no urging from Velazquez, Uncle Mo ran his last quarter in 22.87 seconds. Velazquez did allow him to gallop out at least another eighth of a mile past the wire.

Rattesnake Bridge finished second followed by Gallant Dreams Rocking Out and Schoolyard Cat.

The connections of Uncle Mo planned to use this race as a prep for the Grade 1, $750,000 Wood Memorial at Aqueduct on April 9.