04/02/2016 4:01PM

Royal Posse much the best in Mr Sinatra

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Susie Raisher/NYRA
Jockey Irad Ortiz Jr. and trainer Rudy Rodriguez team up for their second stakes win of the card with Royal Posse in the 1 1/8-mile Mr Sinatra.

OZONE PARK, N.Y. - Little Jerry tried to steal the $90,000 Mr. Sinatra on the front end but Irad Ortiz Jr. bided his time on Royal Posse, took the lead inside the pacesetter nearing the stretch, and drew off to win by 3 3/4 lengths during Saturday’s Claiming Championship Day at Aqueduct.

It was the second victory on the card for trainer Rudy Rodriguez and Ortiz, who earlier teamed up to win with Mr Palmer. Royal Posse paid $4 as the favorite in the five-horse field. He covered 1 1/8 miles in the mud in 1:53.10.

Indycott, who raced closest early as Little Jerry opened up by several lengths, advanced outside the winner on the far turn, came three wide into the stretch, and then held off Dontbetwithbruno by a nose for second. Dontbetwithbruno is also trained by Rodriguez.

Royal Posse, claimed for $20,000 at Belmont Park last May, is 4 for 8 since changing barns. His wins include the $100,000 Evan Shipman Stakes for New York-breds and the $200,000 Claiming Crown Jewel at Gulfstream Park.

Peeping Tom: Dad'z Laugh pays quick dividend

Owner Mike Repole and trainer Bruce Levine claimed Dad'z Laugh for $40,000 on March 19, ran him back two weeks later in the $68,000 Peeping Tom, and made $42,000.

The win was the second on the card for Repole, Levine, and Jose Ortiz, who teamed up to win the $55,000 Kelly Kip with Rockford in race 2. The win was Ortiz's third from the first five races on Claiming Championship Day.

Dad'z Laugh set the early pace in the six-furlong Peeping Tom on a short lead inside The Big Deluxe. Dad'z Laugh drew clear nearing the stretch and went on to score by 2 1/4 lengths. Dad'z Laugh, 6, is now 9 for 38 in his career. He finished second in the race from which Levine and Repole claimed him.

Dad'z Laugh paid $5.70. He was timed in 1:12.39 over a muddy track.

Jeter finished second by a nose over Draxhall Woods, who was claimed for $32,000 out of a winning effort in his last start by Jeremiah Engelhart.

The Big Deluxe tired to finish last in the five-horse field.

More to Tell: Mr Palmer too good

Mr Palmer rebounded from a dull try in his last start to win the $60,000 More to Tell in a determined effort.

Easy Comparison set an uncontested pace in the one-mile race, clipping off fractions of 23.57 seconds, 47.69, and 1:12.51 over the muddy track. He did his best to hold off Mr Palmer but by the eighth pole it was clear that was unlikely to happen and he had to settle for second.

Mr Palmer, unhurried early, was taken out three wide nearing the stretch, and then found his best stride to win by 1 1/2 lengths.

Lucky Lotto, the even-money favorite, was sluggish after breaking from post 1 and dropped too far back. He was taken well out in the track for the stretch drive and finished with good energy to be third, one length behind Easy Comparison.

Mr. Palmer paid $5.30 to win. He is 3 for 7 since being claimed by Rudy Rodriguez for $20,000 in September. He covered the mile in 1:38.51.

The More to Tell was for horses who had started for $16,000 claiming or less since Jan. 1, 2015.

Mr Palmer had finished fifth as the even-money favorite in a third-level optional claiming race at Parx Racing in his prior start.

Kelly Kip: Rockford reels in Hectors Pride

Rockford, the 6-5 favorite in the six-horse Kelly Kip, settled several lengths off the early pace of front-running Hectors Pride. He rallied after the pacesetter in the stretch, took the lead in the final sixteenth of the six-furlong race, and then held off the cavalry to win by a length.

Private Tale finished outside horses at 37-1 to finish second by a half-length over Tug of War, who lagged far back early but was moving well late. It was another nose back to Hectors Pride, who finished a head in front of fifth-place Collin's Smile.

Private Tale, trained by Bruce Levine, ridden by Jose Ortiz, and owned by Mike Repole, paid $4.40 to win and was timed in 1:12.45. The Kelly Kip was for horses who have started for a claiming price of $12,500 or less in 2015-16.

Rockford came into the $55,000 Kelly Kip off a neck victory over $25,000 starter company.

 

r More than 1 year ago
Pathetic day at AQU.  5 and 6 horse fields all day with heavy chalk.  Cannot wait until BEL opens.