08/18/2011 5:24PM

Saratoga: Compliance Officer captures West Point

Barbara D. Livingston
Compliance Officer, with Alex Solis riding, wins the West Point.

SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. - The stock market may be in free-fall, so why not do some speculating claiming horses?

For $25,000, owner Thomas LaMarca and trainer Bruce Brown speculated that the 5-year-old gelding Compliance Officer still had something left. Four months after claiming the horse, LaMarca and Brown are still reaping the rewards as Compliance Officer powered home a 1 3/4-length winner of Thursday's $100,000 West Point Handicap for New York-bred turf males at Saratoga.

Karakorum Legend rallied to be second, 2 1/2 lengths over Pocket Cowboys. Lubash, the pacesetter, finished fourth.

Compliance Officer, a 5-year-old son of Officer, won for the seventh time in 20 career outings, and third from as many starts since being claimed on May 14 at Belmont. Compliance Officer has earned $112,800 for his new connections.

"He had all winter off, I figured he was fresh, and he ran consistently last year, so I think they just gave him the winter off because he was a turf horse," Brown said when asked why he claimed Compliance Officer from Seth Klarman's Klaravich Stables and William Lawrence and trainer Terri Pompay.

"A lot of times you get a fresh horse like that you can have some fun," he said. "I didn't expect to have this much fun, but usually it's good to get a nice fresh horse at the beginning of the turf season like that."

After winning for $50,000 claiming tags going six and then seven furlongs at Belmont, Brown opted to stretch Compliance Officer out in distance and step him up in class in the West Point.

Under Alex Solis, Compliance Officer settled into fourth position early while Lubash set fractions of 25.04 seconds for the quarter and 50.35 for the half while being pursued by Writingonthewall.

Compliance Officer moved into third position entering the far turn, crept up alongside the two front-runners at the quarter pole before taking command just outside the eighth pole.

Compliance Officer covered the 1 1/16 miles in 1:44.40 and returned $10 as the third choice. Icabad Crane, the 5-2 favorite despite having not won a race on turf, finished seventh.