04/30/2017 6:42PM

Royal Squeeze fires fresh in Jeblar Stakes

Email
Kenny Martin/Coglianese Photos
Tyler Gaffalione guides Royal Squeeze to a 1 3/4-length victory in the Jeblar.

Royal Squeeze won in his first start since September on Sunday, when he overtook pacesetter Tiger Blood for a 1 3/4-length victory in the $75,000 Jeblar Stakes at Gulfstream Park. It was another half-length back in third to Mylute.

Zulu, who was the 4-5 favorite off his runner-up finish in the Grade 3 Skip Away at Gulfstream, did not get a good start and finished fifth.

The Jeblar was an overnight stakes for 3-year-olds and up. It was run over seven furlongs.

Royal Squeeze ($16.40) broke well and was willing to settle back off Tiger Blood, who moved to a clear lead through fractions of 22.94 seconds for the opening quarter-mile and 45.10 for the half-mile mark. Royal Squeeze engaged the leader into the stretch, moved past that rival, and went on to cover the distance on a fast track in 1:22.10.

Tyler Gaffalione was aboard the winner for trainer Ralph Nicks.

:: Enjoy news and analysis from DRF? Get handicapping analysis, real-time coverage, special reports, and charts. Unlock access with DRF Plus.

Royal Squeeze was making his first start for Nicks and his first since the Saratoga meet, when he finished ninth in an optional $80,000 claiming sprint Sept. 4. Prior to that start, he had won an optional $62,500 claiming sprint at Belmont Park.

Royal Squeeze is a son of Wildcat Heir who races for Newton Anner Stud. He earned $46,500 for his win in the Jeblar to push his career bankroll to $251,113 . Overall, the horse is 4 for 15.