Updated on 09/15/2011 12:34PM

Saturday Stakes roundup (7/7/01)


King Cugat, 'running on empty,' all-out to capture Bowling Green

ELMONT, N.Y. - King Cugat proved he could win beyond nine furlongs, but he still has a way to go to prove himself worthy of being a true candidate for the Breeders' Cup Turf.

At least that's the impression his connections gave Saturday after King Cugat rallied from last to earn a hard-fought, half-length victory over Slew Valley in the $150,000 Bowling Green Handicap before 8,629 at Belmont Park. It was six lengths back to Man From Wicklow, who nosed out State Shinto for third. Forbidden Apple, winner of the Manhattan last out, finished fifth, beaten 9 1/2 lengths.

The Bowling Green was viewed as a pivotal race for King Cugat and Forbidden Apple, as it would give their connections a clue as to which distances they should point their horses at down the road. Trainer Bill Mott and jockey Jerry Bailey seemed only mildly encouraged about pointing King Cugat to the $2 million Breeders' Cup Turf at 1 1/2 miles. Their other option is the Breeders' Cup Mile.

"His finish wasn't as strong as it had been at a mile and an eighth but that's what you get when you stretch them out,' Bailey said after guiding King Cugat four-wide around the turn and into the stretch.

"We're still not sure that a mile and three-eighths is his best distance, but he was good enough to get it done,' said Mott. Bailey, said Mott, "felt he was running on empty a little bit.'

King Cugat's final time for the 1 3/8 miles was 2:10.62, only .42 seconds off the stakes and inner turf course record established by With Approval in the 1990 Bowling Green. He paid $3.60 to win.

Mott said that he would give King Cugat an opportunity at 12 furlongs later in the year but plans on running him next in the Arlington Million at 1 1/4 miles on Aug. 18.

- David Grening

Churchill Downs: Cashier's Dream rolls

LOUISVILLE, Ky. - Cashier's Dream remained unbeaten in three starts, romping to a track-record victory in the $110,500 Debutante Stakes at Churchill Downs.

Cashier's Dream led all the way in the 5 1/2-furlong Debutante to register a 3 1/2-length triumph over Lakeside Cup. Ridden by Donnie Meche, the winner returned $6.60 and ran the distance in 1:02.52 over a fast track. The previous record was 1:03.11, set May 28 by Leelanau.

Colonial Glitter, the 8-5 favorite under Pat Day, finished third, another 6 1/4 lengths back.

Cashier's Dream, trained by Steve Asmussen, is owned by the partnership of Team Valor and Bill Heiligbrodt. Some of the syndicate members are new owners from Chicago, and Barry Irwin, syndicate manager for Team Valor, said, "they expressed an interest in having her with them the rest of the summer. Maybe this will excite them enough to go ahead and take her to Saratoga."

- Marty McGee

Arlington: Bright Valour repeats

ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. - Bright Valour needed a post-race disqualification to win the Grade 3 $100,000 Hanshin Handicap last year at Arlington Park.

This year, all it took was a perfect inside trip under Robby Albarado and a game run through the stretch for Bright Valour to win his second straight Hanshin.

Bright Valour, placed first in the Hanshin last year when Yankee Victor was disqualified, did get some help this year, too. The second choice, Globalize, bled badly in the race and was eased. Fan the Flame, a proficient front-runner, was compromised when he stumbled at the start. When he recovered, Fan the Flame went up to push an exceedingly fast pace.

Far back early, Bright Valour commenced a sustained run at the half-mile pole, slipped through along the inside turning for home, and outgamed Apt to Be in the stretch, winning by three-quarters of a length. Castlewood was third.

Bright Valour, trained by Al Stall, paid $5.40 as the favorite and ran a mile in 1:36.21 over a muddy track.

- Marcus Hersh

Calder: Juggernaut rallies to win

MIAMI - Juggernaut unleashed a powerful closing rally that easily carried him to a two-length victory in the $100,000 Criterium Stakes at Calder.

Juggernaut appeared hopelessly out of contention under apprentice Abel Castellano Jr. during the opening half-mile of the 5 1/2-furlong Criterium. But once he angled out well past the middle of the track leaving the turn, he launched a furious closing surge to run down Pure Precision, the 3-5 favorite, in the final 70 yards.

Bog Hunter overcame a slow start and early trouble to finish a well-beaten third, with Tabac, the 2-1 second choice, a disappointing fourth.

Juggernaut, trained by Larry Pilotti, paid $23.80 after completing the distance in 1:06.79 over a good track.

Earlier in the day, Dispersed Award ($26.80) overtook the pacesetting I No Best in deep stretch to post a three-quarters of a length victory in the $50,000 Georgia Stakes.

- Mike Welsch

Monmouth: Silver Tornado wins on turf

OCEANPORT, N.J. - Silver Tornado raced gate to wire to win the $100,000 Reeve Schley Jr. Stakes for 3-year-old fillies on the Monmouth Park turf course. Trained by Linda Rice, Silver Tornado remains undefeated, with four career wins, the first three of which came on the dirt.

Jockey Jose Ferrer took Silver Tornado ($7) right to th lead, with Marq of Beauty tracking in second the entire way. The two raced that way to the wire, as Silver Tornado won by 1 1/4 lengths, covering 1 1/16 miles in 1:42.70. Platinum Tiara, the 3-5 favorite, did not fire around the final turn, and finished third, three-quarters of a length behind Marq of Beauty.

* First Spear ($8.20) sat off a quick pace under Joe Bravo and closed strongly to win the $75,000 Lamplighter Handicap over five other 3-year-olds at 1 1/16 miles over a good turf in 1:41.94.

- Ryan Goldberg

Philadelphia Park: Pompeii erupts

Pompeii sat off the pace of the early leaders and then closed willingly to score a length victory in the $50,000 Doylestown Handicap at Philadelphia Park.

Ridden by Roberto Alvarado for trainer John Kimmel, Pompeii ($4) covered 1 1/8 miles in 1:50.43

- Joe DeVivo

Thistledown: Harlan's Holiday romps

NORTH RANDALL, Ohio - Harlan's Holiday assumed command before traveling a half-mile and went on to post a 5 1/4-length victory over nine 2-year-old Ohio-bred rivals in the $40,000 Cleveland Kindergarten Stakes at Thistledown.

Truth Matters finished second, 1 1/2 lengths in front of All Star Lover.

Harlan's Holiday ($4), trained by Ken McPeek, covered the 5 1/2 furlongs in 1:05.38 over a fast track.

Truth Matters rallied from just off the pace to get up for second over the tiring All Star Lover.

- Chuck Scaravilli

Woodbine: Alexis surprises

ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Alexis burst out of the pack in the stretch to take the Grade 3 $171,300 Dance Smartly Handicap by three-quarters of a length over American invader Badouizm at Woodbine.

Alexis ($25.30) ran the 1 1/8-mile turf race for fillies and mares in 1:47.81.

Only to You, the 8-5 favorite, was never a serious threat and finished another three-quarters of a length back in third in the 10-horse field.

- Ron Gierkink

Louisiana Downs: Midge Too gets there

BOSSIER CITY, La. - Midge Too dug in through the final furlong at Louisiana Downs to win the $40,000 Suthern Accent Stakes, outfinishing heavily favored Sweet and Firm by a length. Unique Creek finished another three lengths back in third in the six-furlong race, with Tensas Bon Adeau finishing fourth and last.

Midge Too, owned by trainer Jerry Cart and Lynette Burns, covered the six furlongs in 1:10.04 over a fast track and paid $5.40 as the second choice.

- Jeff Taylor

England: Medicean stretches out to win Eclipse

Medicean, put to an all-out drive by Kieren Fallon, got up in the final strides to take the Group 1 Eclipse Stakes at Sandown Park.

The victory was Medicean's third group race tally in a row, coming on the heels of the Group 1 Lockinge Stakes and the Group 2 Queen Anne Stakes. Both those races, however, were one-mile affairs, whereas the Eclipse is run at 1 1/4 miles.

Medicean prevailed at 7-2 by a half-length from Grandera, as the 9-4 ($2.25-1) favorite Tobougg, just got up for fourth over Black Minnaloushe. The final time on good to firm ground was 2:04.65.

Winning trainer Michael Stoute suggested that Medicean would revert to a mile for the Group 1 Sussex Stakes on Aug. 1, but his owners at Cheveley Park Stud may want to rest him until the 1 1/4-mile Champion Stakes on Oct. 20.

- Alan Shuback