10/07/2017 6:28PM

Mo Dont No repeats in Best of Ohio Endurance

Coady Photography
Mo Dont No remained unbeaten at 1 1/4 miles with Saturday's triumph.

Reigning Ohio-bred horse of the year Mo Dont No left no doubt as to his superiority, cruising to a repeat victory in the $150,000 Best of Ohio Endurance Stakes and establishing a Belterra Park track record in the process.

This was the sixth career stakes victory for Mo Dont No ($3.20), who pushed his bankroll to $651,255 for owner Ron Paolucci's Loooch Racing Stables and trainer Jeffrey Radosevich. That duo also captured Saturday's Best of Ohio Distaff with Mayas Queen Neetee.

Mo Dont No, with Ricardo Feliciano in the irons, was away in good order in the bulky field of 13 for the Endurance, and patiently sat in second through the opening half as longshot Geppetto ambitiously showed early speed before stopping. The defending winner confidently moved up and had established a clear lead through six furlongs in 1:12.04 and the outcome was never seriously in doubt from there, as he held sway down the lane to win by a length. Cake Pop nosed out Let'scalliteven for second.

Mo Dont No finished the 1 1/4 miles, a distance he is unbeaten at, in 2:03.32.

Another Ohio-bred champion was attempting a repeat victory in Saturday’s statebred showcase, but millionaire Rivers Run Deep fell short in his bid for a four-peat in the $150,000 Best of Ohio Sprint, as Hijo de Sheltowee posted a nose upset for his first stakes victory.

Heavy favorite Rivers Run Deep rushed past the leaders while wide in the stretch, and appeared home free, leading by 1 1/2 lengths in midstretch. But Hijo de Sheltowee, who had forced his way through a narrow opening near the quarter pole under Pablo Morales, refused to concede, battling along the rail to eat into Rivers Run Deep’s margin late. Hijo de Sheltowee nosed out his rival at the wire, stopping the clock in 1:10.18 for six furlongs.

It was another 4 1/2 lengths back to Nuttin' Faster.

Hijo de Sheltowee ($22.60), trained by Nabu Morales for owner Michael Friedman, was fifth in last year's Best of Ohio Stakes. He finished third to Rivers Run Deep in the Honey Jay Stakes this past August, then fifth behind Mo Dont No in the Governor's Buckeye Cup. He bounced back with a starter-optional claiming win at Thistledown in his final start before the Best of Ohio.