02/18/2013 5:40PM

Laurel: Javerre upsets in General George

Jim McCue/Maryland Jockey Club
Javerre, ridden by J.D. Acosta, wins the Grade 3 General George Handicap, his first victory in a open stakes.

Javerre held off favored Brigand after surging past front-running Il Vilano to pull a 6-1 upset Monday in the 37th running of the Grade 3, $250,000 General George Handicap at Laurel Park in Laurel, Md.

A postrace inquiry into an incident on the backstretch found Brigand, who finished second as the 6-5 favorite, guilty of interference, and he was placed last. The new order of finish behind Javerre was Il Vilano, Broad Rule, and Fiddlers Afleet.

Javerre, ridden by J.D. Acosta, returned $15.80 after completing the seven-furlong distance in 1:23.81 over a fast track. Acosta had never ridden Javerre except in a recent morning workout.

"I just wanted him to run like he worked, and he did," said Acosta, a longtime regular on the Maryland and West Virginia circuits.

Javerre, trained by Cal Lynch at Parx Racing for owner Smith Farm & Stable, is a 4-year-old New Jersey-bred gelding by Outflanker. He now has won five times while never worse than third in nine career starts. The General George was his first victory in an open stakes.

"He's just learning to be a racehorse," said Lynch, who was on hand. "He's gotten better for us every start."

The winning margin was 1 1/4 lengths, with Il Vilano another 1 1/2 lengths back of Brigand. Isn't He Perfect and Thunder Lord were early scratches, leaving a field of six older horses.

The backstretch incident occurred as the field left the mile chute for the track proper. Associate lost jockey Erick Rodriguez when he clipped heels behind a tight pack. A lengthy inquiry found Brigand, a New York-bred shipping in from New York for Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert, guilty of impeding Associate, resulting in his disqualification. Rodriguez got up on his own power and climbed into the track ambulance shortly after being thrown. Laurel officials reported shortly afterward that Rodriguez was not injured.

Javerre carried 113 pounds under handicap conditions. The top-to-bottom spread was only 5 pounds.

The $2 exacta (6-2) paid $62, the $1 trifecta (6-2-8) returned $168, and the 10-cent superfecta (6-2-8-5) was worth $82.31.