04/26/2009 11:00PM

Noosa Beach turns it on early

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AUBURN, Wash. - Noosa Beach and jockey Juan Gutierrez employed a surprising change of tactics Sunday while winning the $30,000 Auburns Stakes for 3-year-olds at Emerald Downs.

Twice a winner from off the pace during his 2-year-old campaign, Noosa Beach went right to the front in his first race at 3 and stayed there, holding off Rooster City to win by a half-length. Noosa Beach ran six furlongs in 1:09.60 and paid $3.40. Alpakapaluza finished third, 10 1/2 lengths behind the winner.

Doris Harwood trains Noosa Beach for her husband and the colt's owner, Jeff Harwood. The couple also bred Noosa Beach, a gelded son of Harbor the Gold. Noosa Beach has a 3-1-1 mark from 5 starts and earnings of $71,875. He could be seen next in the 6 1/2-furlong, $50,000 Pepsi-Cola Handicap on May 31.