06/27/2009 12:00AM

Rumor Has It gets loose in Polar Expedition


Keith Desormeaux trains Thoroughbred racehorses. He also handicaps them pretty well.

Saturday, Desormeaux sent out Gangbuster as the heavy favorite in the $52,500 Polar Expedition Stakes at Arlington Park. Thursday, he said he feared Rumor Has It would shake loose on a big early lead and never come back to the field - and that is precisely what happened.

Gangbuster whittled down Rumor Has It's huge early lead to a couple of lengths with about a quarter-mile to run in the 1 3/4-mile Polar Expedition, but Gangbuster and the other pursuers had worked too hard to catch up, and it was a fresh Rumor Has It who had the most gas left. He kicked clear again in the final furlong under Eddie Perez, and won the Polar Expedition by 5 3/4 lengths.

Rumor Has It gave trainer Dave Hinsley his first win of the 2009 Arlington season. An 8-year-old, Rumor Has It does one thing well, and that is go to the lead and sustain his pace over long distances. He did so winning the Grade 3 Kentucky Cup Turf at 1 1/2 miles last fall, and went straight to the front in Saturday's Polytrack marathon. By the time he had run his opening quarter-mile in 25.21 seconds, Rumor Has It already had a double-digit early lead, and going past the finish wire for the first time, Rumor Has It was up by at least 20 lengths.

Rumor Has It ($13.80) ran six furlongs in 1:14.16, a mile in 1:42.44, and 1 1/4 miles in 2:10.81. With a half-mile left to run, the chasers started making a serious dent in the lead, but Perez was sitting chilly, waiting for the stretch. When he asked Rumor Has It to quicken past the quarter pole, the horse was ready, turning back Gangbuster and third-place finisher Lemonade Kid, and stopping the timer in 3:03.84 for 14 furlongs.