Updated on 09/17/2011 11:20PM

Laurel: Sweetnorthernsaint dominates

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Jim McCue/Maryland Jockey Club
Sweetnorthernsaint charges down the Laurel Park homestretch like a black streak through a gray fog, pulling away to an emphatic ten-length victory in the $75,000 Miracle Wood Stakes and stamping himself as a player to watch among Triple Crown eligibles.

There may not have been any betting value on Sweetnorthernsaint, but his 1-5 odds reflected the dominant performance he gave in the $75,000 Miracle Wood Stakes at Laurel Park.

Ridden confidently by Mario Pino, Sweetnorthernsaint ($2.60) splashed his way to a 10-length victory over nine other 3-year-olds in the one-mile Miracle Wood. He covered the distance in the slop in 1:38.69.

"I've been training Thoroughbreds for 20 years - and he's the most talented horse I've ever had," said trainer Mike Trombetta. "He's really grown up over the past several months. He has an unbelievable amount of ability. What other horses work to do comes easily to him. "What level he'll take us to - I really don't know."

Pino was equally impressed by Sweetnorthernsaint, a Triple Crown nominee who has finished first in all three starts since he was gelded, though one victory was taken away for interference.

"I don't get too excited but all I can say is 'Wow,' " Pino said. "When they came to him a little bit I roused him and he spurted off. This is the best 3-year-old I have ever ridden and for a horse that is only going to get better that is saying a lot. He might be something special."

Returning to the races after posting a 102 Beyer Speed Figure beating maidens at Aqueduct four weeks earlier, Sweetnorthernsaint easily opened up a four-length advantage entering the stretch and increased his margin once Pino applied his whip in deep stretch.