02/14/2015 9:53PM

Metaboss proves best in El Camino Real Derby

Barbara D. Livingston
Metaboss wins the El Camino Real Derby by 2 1/2 lengths Saturday at Golden Gate Fields.

ALBANY, Calif. – Metaboss ($15.20), coming off a solid maiden victory at 1 1/8 miles, repeated his strong stretch run as he blew past rivals to score an impressive victory Saturday in the $200,525 Grade 3 El Camino Real Derby at Golden Gate Fields.

Jockey Alex Solis settled in comfortably and confidently behind a slow pace that saw Indianaughty, Ernest Shackleton, and the favored Conquest Typhoon engage in an Alphonse-and-Gaston routine on the front end.

He was eighth in the field of 10, but Solis said when he asked his colt briefly at the half-mile pole, Metaboss responded nicely.

"He gave me a little kick, and I just took hold and said to be patient," Solis said.

:: ROAD TO THE KENTUCKY DERBY: Prep races, point standings, replays

Indianaughty had a head on Conquest Typhoon through a 1:13.98 fraction for six furlongs, but Metaboss was about to make his move.

Solis got Metaboss in gear while swinging four wide on the turn. He quickly moved from eighth to third and then blew past the leaders. He never was challenged in the lane as he won the race by 2 1/2 lengths in 1:49.92. Cross the Line, forced to check into the first turn, rallied late to edge a tiring Conquest Typhoon by a neck for second.

"He just opened up on them," marveled Solis.

Cross the Line's jockey, Juan Hernandez, offered no excuses and said, "He ran good. I was just second."

Conquest Typhoon's rider, Mike Smith, said his multiple graded stakes-winning mount, who was making his first start since Nov. 30, tired late, costing him second.

"The winner just beat me. That's all," he said. "The winner is a nice horse. I was never going to beat the winner. He beat us pretty handy."

Winning trainer Jeff Bonde said he "didn't crank up [Metaboss, a May 17 foal] early in the year" because he was a late foal.

Metaboss ran third at 6 1/2 furlongs on the turf behind the graded stakes-placed Stormy Liberal in his debut. He was fourth, also at 6 1/2 furlongs, to undefeated graded stakes winner Ocho Ocho Ocho in his second start. He was second to Bolo, who won a stakes in his next start, in his debut around two turns.

"In his sprints, he ran into some tough horses," said Bonde. "It was just a matter of stretching him out. You could see he wanted more distance."

The victory was worth $120,000 and also earned Metaboss, who has career earnings of $177,520, 10 points toward the Kentucky Derby.

"Naturally, when you've got a 3-year-old like this, you're thinking the Kentucky Derby, but there are a lot of steppingstones along the way," said Bonde.

Metaboss was a $10,000 weanling sale by Mersad Metanovic, the bloodstock agent who also found Eclipse winner She's a Tiger for Bonde. The colt was put in last May's Barretts Sale and was sold for $60,000 but was returned said Metanovic, who had been plagued by second thoughts about putting the colt in the sale.

Metanovic, who owns the colt with Michael Arndt, Milan McFetridge, Dan Preiss, and Chuck Azcarate, said the March 21 Spiral Stakes at Turfway would likely be Metaboss' next start.

Kristin Bever More than 1 year ago
I bet him to win, and he won. I'm betting him for the Derby and he will win. As far as running on the dirt? Y'all do know that he trains on dirt, right?
Sanjoflow Flow More than 1 year ago
I bet Metaboss at GG fields to win, place , show and then another ticket to win....nice payout.....but i don't get it???? I do not see either the Spiral Stakes nor the Santa Anita Derby as point races for the Kentucky Derby...so why race him there?
Frank Reach More than 1 year ago
Weak prep. None of these horses have a shot at winning in Kentucky on the first Saturday of May.
Nick Frazzetto More than 1 year ago
I am impressed with this colts recent two wins going 9 furlongs but I am not convinced until he can show me he's able to do it on the dirt. His only dirt race to date was on Breeders Cup day in the Juvenile Sprint Turf which was switched to the main track. He was still a maiden making only his second career start and ran into a now undefeated Ocho Ocho Ocho. He finished a game fourth 9 1/2 lengths ahead of the fifth place finisher in that race. His other races have all been on the turf or an all weather surface. The El Camino Real Derby run at Golden Gate is an all weather track which tends to favor turf horses. Guess what, his upcoming race The Spiral Stakes at Turfway Park is also an all weather surface. Up until Metaboss can show me he can handle a dirt track I am not onboard. I must say, having only two 9 furlongs races to date, the Remsen Stakes at Aqueduct on November 29th for two year olds and the El Camino Real Derby. Three year olds start running at the 9 furlong distance in mid March with the Sunland Derby, Florida Derby, Louisiana Derby, Wood Memorial, Blue Grass Stakes, Santa Anita Derby and Arkansas Derby which are all final preps before the Kentucky Derby. The Spiral Stakes will be Metaboss last prep if he is truly headed to Churchill Downs on May 2nd not giving him an opportunity to run on the dirt before then.
Walter More than 1 year ago
This horse got 1 1/8 easy. His sire was a sprinter and his mom's side has a sprinter pedigree as well. Looking forward to see how he progresses.
PioneerNile More than 1 year ago
What a happy 40 owners of Megaboss
mike More than 1 year ago
Are we trying to be funny here?
joe d More than 1 year ago
IN my opinion, this race shouldn't even qualify as a derby prep. ALTHOUGH the tapeta surface seems to be very easy on the horses physically and they are exciting races to watch. when it comes to the DERBY,its not a good gauge. besides history shows that these horses(golden gate,tapeta surface)) rarely make an impact on derby day. same goes for that spiral race.(yes i remember ANIMAL kingdom). name another? not too many.
Bill Moore More than 1 year ago
Joe, you are right in general that the synthetic track races are won by horses bred for grass and not dirt.Last year Medal Count finished 2nd in Blue Grass Stakes and then ran well in a troubled Derby and came within 2 heads of winning Belmont Stakes. Who knows how well the unfortunate Dance with Fate or 2013 Spiral winer Black Onyx may have handled dirt. Looking at Megaboss's pedigree (Street Boss, Free House), I don't see why he shouldn't 11/4 miles on dirt. Free House couldn't step out of near Triple Crown winner Silver Charm's shadow. Maybe his grandson can get it done. I hope he gets into derby even if it is through Spiral route.
tommy More than 1 year ago
This horse has the best racing time for 3 year old for the distance of 1 1/8 @ 1:49 with 122 lbs. metaboss is the best closer at long distance races!!! I can't wait to see him beat Dortmund and firing line by 5 lengths at the Santa Anita derby!!!!! I just hope metaboss will be a long shot at Santa Anita derby and at the kentucky derby!!
joe d More than 1 year ago
hes not a dirt horse tommy!!
Chris Lowe More than 1 year ago
That remains to be seen. His only dirt race was taken off the turf to the paved highway at Santa Anita on BC day.
Jamie D More than 1 year ago
I don't think Cross the line got the best ride possible
Tereso More than 1 year ago
Good win by Metaboss, Jeff Bonde needs to run Metaboss on the dirt to see how he handles the dirt track now and to see if he is a derby contender.
tommy More than 1 year ago
All weather track is hard like dirt and not soft and smooth like turf. If a horse does well on all weather track such as toast of New York wining Dubai on all weather and then coming 2nd in breeders cup on dirt. That's why they call it all weather track because it's hard and not smooth like dirt so if it rains, you can still run the race
TRacingLifeMore More than 1 year ago
If all weather tracks were like dirt, Conquest Typhoon would have blown the field away after a 25 second opening quarter. It's nothing like dirt at all, from a standpoint of which horses the surface favors.
tommy More than 1 year ago
Conquest typhoon lacked stamina or else he would of won!!!! Metaboss is a beast and enjoys longer distances!!!!!
Cate Swan-Costanzo More than 1 year ago
I bet him at the Wynn at 150-1...saw this coming !! Congratulations to MetaBoss & all the connections.
Kristin Bever More than 1 year ago
Ohhhhhhhhhhhh yeah baby!!!