12/26/2014 2:24PM

Salutos Amigos scores third stakes in four starts with impressive Gravesend victory


The hits just keep on coming for Salutos Amigos, who slipped through inside the leaders turning for home to win Friday’s $100,000 Gravesend Stakes going away by three lengths.

Sent off as a slight favorite in the field of five older sprinters, Salutos Amigos ($4.40) settled in fourth position down the backstretch as Green Gratto set fractions of 22.92 seconds and 45.85 while chased by Dads Caps and Mewannarose.

Salutos Amigos got through a tight spot along the rail to join the fray in upper stretch and drew off under right-handed slapping from Irad Ortiz Jr. to post his third stakes win in the past two months and sixth win overall since being brought to New York by David Jacobson in early spring.

Mewannarose edged Dads Caps for second, with Green Gratto and Crafty Dreamer completing the order of finish.

“I got a perfect trip. He broke well and sat just off the lead,” said Ortiz. “I tried not to use him up early and had plenty of horse for the finish. I got the chance to go inside in the stretch and had plenty of horse.”

In his 14th start of the year and first on Aqueduct’s inner track, Salutos Amigos ran six furlongs in a brisk 1:09.51 seconds. He earned $60,000 to boost his bankroll for the year to $599,000.

“He was spectacular as usual,” said Jacobson. “We were hoping he would get through [along the inside] and then [Irad] lost his stick. It gets to be a concern, but this horse went into the race as good as he’s ever gone into a race. It was a great performance and a great ride by Irad.”