12/11/2010 6:24PM

More Than a Reason scores biggest win of career in Queens County

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Adam Coglianese/NYRA
More Than a Reason, ridden by Eddie Castro, outlasts Stormy's Majesty to upset the Queens County Handicap.

OZONE PARK, N.Y. - More Than a Reason began his career in September 2007 and has made at least one start in 38 of the 40 months since. Short or long, on dirt, turf, or synthetic, More Than a Reason rarely missed a dance and helped fill more than his share of stakes races along the way.

Saturday, in his 10th attempt in stakes company, More Than a Reason graduated from hard-knocker to graded stakes winner, outfinishing Stormy’s Majesty to take the Grade 3, $100,000 Queens County by a head before a decent-sized crowd of 5,444 at Aqueduct. Stormy’s Majesty, the Discovery winner, held second by a neck over 4-5 favorite Arson Squad. Modern Cowboy, Seniors Pride, and Pedrolino completed the order of finish.

Claimed for $15,000 by Persaud on behalf of Anthony Calabrese in 2008, More Than a Reason has won 7 of 44 starts since and banked more than $370,000.

“I just play around with him, I baby him,” Persaud, a former jockey, said when asked how it is More Than a Reason runs so often. “He’s my best horse. I don’t train him hard, I just run, that’s all he does. He’s big-hearted. You have to ride him right, one run, that’s it. You keep him too close to the pace or you try to move too early you get nothing.”

Under Eddie Castro, More Than a Reason trailed the field of six through six furlongs run in 1:15.64. Seniors Pride set the pace, stalked by Stormy’s Majesty. Entering the far turn, More Than a Reason launched his bid, but had to come five-wide in the stretch.

Stormy’s Majesty, under Edgar Prado, wrestled the lead from More Than a Reason inside the three-sixteenths pole and was doing his best to fend off More Than a Reason. But More Than a Reason, a 5-year-old son of More Than Ready, wore down Stormy’s Majesty in the final strides to get the win.
More Than a Reason covered the 1 3/16 miles in 1:57.69 and returned $40.20, triggering a pick-six carryover of $33,213 into Sunday’s card.

“The trainer told me he wanted one move and to not move too soon,” said Castro, who rebounded from a spill earlier in the week to earn his second win in two days after starting the meet 0 for 22. “My horse fought hard in the last part.”

Persaud, who won his first graded stakes as a trainer, said he would likely give More Than a Reason a break. All that means is he probably won’t run until Evening Attire Stakes here on Jan. 15.