08/25/2010 9:17PM

Liberian Freighter comes off layoff to take Brubaker

Benoit & Associates
Liberian Freighter (right) and Martin Garcia hold off Hey Elvis and Rafael Bejarano to win the Brubaker at Del Mar.

DEL MAR, Calif. - Liberian Freighter won his first stakes in 16 months in Wednesday’s $93,650 Harry Brubaker Stakes at Del Mar, leading throughout his first start in three months.

Ridden by Martin Garcia, Liberian Freighter ($11.40) set a slow pace of 24.32 and 48.42 seconds and held off a late run from even-money favorite Hey Elvis to win the 1 1/16-mile turf race in 1:41.03. Quindici Man finished third in the field of six.

Liberian Freighter was winless in four starts this year prior to the Brubaker, which was restricted to horses that had not won a stakes worth $50,000 to the winner, other than statebred, at a mile or farther since March 1.

The 5-year-old gelding is trained by by Neil Drysdale for a partnership that includes his wife, Shawn Dugan, the estate of Ed Nahem, and Chuck Winner.

By Bertrando, the California-bred Liberian Freighter has won 7 of 30 starts and $481,540. The Brubaker was his first stakes win since the Tiznow Stakes at Hollywood Park in April 2009.

Drysdale said Liberian Freighter will be considered for the California Cup Mile at Hollywood Park on Oct. 30.