09/03/2012 6:19PM

Parx: Ben’s Cat up in time to win Turf Monster

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Bill Denver/Equi-Photo
Ben's Cat (left) edges out Chamberlain Bridge to win the Turf Monster Handicap.

Ben’s Cat got up in the final strides in a three-way photo on Monday to capture the Grade 3, $350,000 Turf Monster Handicap at Parx Racing.

The victory by the 6-year-old gelding was significant on so many levels.

It was the second straight Turf Monster win for Ben’s Cat, a prize pupil for Maryland training legend King Leatherbury. Ben’s Cat improved to 17 for 26 in his career, with a sparkling 10-for-15 mark on the turf.

The latest triumph lifted him over $1 million career earnings. Most significant of all, Ben’s Cat now has a spot in the Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint in November at Santa Anita after capturing this Win and You’re In race.

Not bad for an afternoon’s work on the soggy course at Parx Racing. And it didn’t come easy.
Great Mills broke well and was immediately hooked by Ju Jitsu Jax. While those two dueled, Chamberlain Bridge, a two-time Turf Monster winner and the 2010 Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint champion, was laying third right behind the leaders.

Great Mills cut the corner brilliantly turning for home and quickly opened a substantial lead. Chamberlain Bridge began his run down the center of the track with Ben’s Cat, fifth most of the way, a late arrival on the scene with a strong run on the extreme outside.

The trio hit the wire together with a determined Ben’s Cat and Julian Pimentel getting up by a head over Chamberlain Bridge with Great Mill a nose back in third.
The top three were 5 1/2 lengths clear of fourth-place finisher Catalactic.

Ben’s Cat paid $5.80 to win as the slight favorite at 19-10 over Chamberlain Bridge at 2-1. The time was 1:00.62 over the course rated soft.

Super Chunky was fifth followed by Car Thief, Ju Jitsu Jax, and Kyma.