07/04/2012 8:34PM

Pleasanton: Bailouttheminister wears down rivals to win Sam J. Whiting

Marcel Langevin/Vassar Photography
Bailouttheminister and Russell Baze win the Sam J. Whiting at Pleasanton.

Last early in a compact field of five, favored Bailouttheminister ($4.80) made a strong move in the stretch to wear down leader Ain't No Other to score his first stakes victory in the $79,300 Sam J. Whiting Handicap at the Alameda County Fair in Pleasanton, Calif., on Wednesday.

Bailouttheminister was last leaving the gate in the six-furlong race, but jockey Russell Baze was able to get him off the rail and into position, less than two lengths behind Sanger Silver, who held the lead over Ain't No Other by a head through a 22.25 opening quarter. Bailouttheminister moved up on the turn and was able to squeeze into a spot between Ain't No Other and Shudacudawudya in the lane. Under strong handling by Baze, he was able to edge clear from Ain't No Other, who had won the Livermore Valley Wine Stakes here last year

Bailouttheminister won by a half-length over Ain't No Other in 1:09. 06. Shudacudawudya was another half-length back in third.

"He always gives you his best, and he doesn't mind being inside," said Baze of Bailouttheminister.

"He keeps getting better and better," said trainer Keith Nation of Bailouttheminister, a 4-year-old Minister's Wild Cat gelding. "He didn't do well here last year. That's why we gave him a work here last Wednesday. After that, we felt confident, but, at the same time, we knew it was a tough race."

Bailouttheminister notched his sixth victory in 16 starts, all for owners Ed and Theresa DeNike. He earned $49,300 to lift his career total to $212,434.