Updated on 09/16/2011 8:39AM

Kris's Prayer caps big week for Pompay


OCEANPORT, N.J. - It's been a very good week for trainer Teresa Pompay.

Pompay capped off a six-win week on Sunday as Kris's Prayer came charging down the lane to set the Haskell course track record in 1:47.15 and win the $50,000 Choice Stakes at nine furlongs on the turf. Kris's Prayer saved ground on the rail throughout the race, eased to the outside in the stretch, and wore down Alphabetical in deep stretch to win by three-quarters of a length. Emergency Status, winner of the Grade 3 Jersey Derby here May 27, set the pace and finished 2 3/4 lengths back in third.

Kris's Prayer ($6.40) ran second in the Jersey Derby after closing from dead last, but he stayed much closer to the pace after breaking poorly in the Choice Stakes under jockey Eibar Coa. He rated in fourth and then third around the final turn before coming two-wide to battle Alphabetical. Emergency Status had an uncontested lead out of the gate and set moderate fraction through one-half mile, but the field closed in on him halfway down the backstretch and his six-furlong fraction of 1:10.99 was much quicker than his previous fractions. Alphabetical took the lead from Emergency Status down the stretch but Kris's Prayer closed in to come home first before a crowd of 12, 442.

Kris's Prayer had foot problems leading into the race but Pompay said he overcame them well leading into Sunday.

"I was a little surprised how well he ran today," Pompay said. "This is a real improving colt, real nice to be around."

Kris's Prayer improved 2-2-2 in eight career starts for owners Carl Bowling and Robert Velotta. He only broke his maiden April 24 at Gulfstream Park, one race before running in the Jersey Derby.