09/11/2010 7:30PM

Kuntzweiler guides Rezif to Kentucky Cup Turf upset

J.J. Zamaiko
Jockey Greta Kuntweiler is all smiles after winning the Kentucky Cup Turf on Rezif.

FRANKLIN, Ky. - Rezif launched a devastating run approaching the eighth pole and went on to a convincing 6 1/4-length upset as an 18-1 outsider in the 14th running of the Grade 3, $150,000 Kentucky Cup Turf on Saturday, opening day of the four-day Kentucky Downs meet.

Greta Kuntzweiler gave a triumphant wave of her whip as she crossed under the wire aboard Rezif in the 1 1/2-mile KC Turf. The winner had finished second last year in the KC Turf to Cloudy's Knight, the venerable gelding who battled on the lead Saturday as the 9-10 favorite before putting all the others away to finish second, five lengths ahead of third-place Free Fighter in a field of nine older horses.

"We love Kentucky Downs, and so does this horse," said Matthew Jacobson, who trains and co-owns Rezif, a 5-year-old Kentucky-bred gelding by Distant View. "We're real proud of him."

Rezif returned $38.80 to win in registering his first victory since August 2009. He was coming off a fifth-place finish in an Ellis Park turf allowance and was winless in his 10 previous tries. Apparently, Jacobson will quit while he is ahead.

"We're done for the year," said Jacobson. "We're going to put him away and we'll start back up again in the spring."

Rezif finished in 2:44.74 over a turf course that was rated good but was playing extremely slow. The time was some 11 seconds slower than what Cloudy's Knight took in winning last year. A fierce rainstorm blew into this south-central Kentucky region in mid-afternoon, although calmer weather prevailed afterward. A heavy rain Friday also helped to bog down the Kentucky Downs course.

For Kuntzweiler, the stakes victory was her second since she returned from a 4 1/2-year layoff - and her second in six days. She won the Guilliams Memorial aboard Turallure on Monday, closing day at Ellis.

The KC Turf was the final event in the three-race Kentucky Cup turf series. In the earlier races:

* Chicago-based Never Retreat ($6.40) ran down Seniga in the final yards to capture the $50,000 Kentucky Cup Ladies Turf, marking her second straight stakes victory. With Eddie Perez riding for trainer Chris Block, Never Retreat relaxed early before launching a bid that took her to a half-length score. She finished the one-mile distance in 1:46.18.

Never Retreat, owned by Team Block, won the Lady Canterbury Stakes in her last outing. She was sent away the favorite in a field of 13.

* Due Date ($7.20) got a good inside stalking trip under Tony Farina before powering away to a one-length triumph as the second choice in the $50,000 Kentucky Cup Turf Dash. Amazing Results finished second and Classical Closing was third in a field of eight, while Yankee Injunuity, the slight favorite, faded to sixth.

Due Date, owned by the Klein family of Louisville and based at Churchill Downs with trainer Steve Margolis, finished six furlongs in 1:16.41. It was the sixth win in 26 career starts for the 5-year-old horse by El Prado, and his first in a stakes.