12/13/2014 4:56PM

Micromanage gets fourth stakes win in Queens County

NYRA photo
Micromanage, under Manuel Franco, wins the Queen's County Handicap by 1 1/4 lengths Saturday.

OZONE PARK, N.Y. – Mike Repole is the king of Queens.

Repole, a native of Queens, N.Y., who grew up going to Aqueduct, was in the Big A winner’s circle Saturday after his 4-year-old Micromanage, despite going five wide in the stretch, won the $100,000 Queens County Handicap by 1 1/4 lengths over a traffic-snarled Vyjack.

Repole also finished third in the race with Misconnect. He was followed by Stormin Monarcho, Turco Bravo, Elnaawi, Don Dulce, Percussion, and Plainview. Wealth to Me was scratched.

The win was the sixth from 23 starts for Micromanage, a son of Medaglia d’Oro. It was his fourth stakes victory, and the $60,000 first-place purse pushed his career earnings to $701,881.

It also ended a four-race losing streak for Micromanage that included being eased in the Grade 1 Jockey Club Gold Cup at Belmont in September and finishing last in the Grade 3 Red Smith Handicap on turf here last month.

“Solid horse, fun horse to own,” Repole said. “If my trainer could get him to be two or three lengths faster, he’d win a lot more graded stakes.”

Repole was referring to Todd Pletcher, the trainer of Micromanage, who was at Gulfstream Park on Saturday, where he won four races, including two stakes, on that track’s card.

Byron Hughes, Pletcher’s New York assistant, saddled Micromanage and had two primary instructions for jockey Manuel Franco, which was to keep busy on the horse and keep him wide.

Franco had Micromanage in seventh position and three wide around the first turn while Plainview and Percussion sparred on the lead through a half-mile in 47.47 seconds.

Irad Ortiz Jr. had Vyjack tracking from along the inside in third.

Micromanage began his move leaving the half-mile pole and was forced to go five to six wide in the stretch. While he may have lost ground, Micromanage had a much smoother trip than did the favored Vyjack, who got stymied around the five-sixteenths pole.

As Micromanage continued unimpeded down the lane, Vyjack found room near the three-sixteenths pole but couldn’t catch Micromanage, who covered the 1 1/8 miles in 1:51.76 and returned $9.70 to win.

“Byron told me to keep the horse busy because he’s a little lazy and to keep the horse on the outside because he doesn’t like to be on the inside,” Franco said.

Ortiz said he simply had too much traffic to overcome.

“Tough trip,” Ortiz said. “I tried to get through, but there was too much traffic.”

Repole said Micromanage likely will stay in New York for the winter and target races like the Evening Attire on Feb. 16 and the Stymie on March 22 at 1 1/8 miles.