09/12/2008 11:00PM

Soldier's Dancer rallies from last


Calder invader Soldier's Dancer rallied from last after six furlongs to a two-length victory over longshot Ballonenostrikes in Saturday's $250,000 PTHA President's Cup at Philadelphia Park.

Soldier's Dancer is based year-round in south Florida with trainer David Vivian. The President's Cup was his first start on grass since winning the Tampa Turf Classic in April.

As expected, Soldier's Dancer dropped to the rear of the pack while Delaware River cut out leisurely fractions of 26.65 seconds, 53.26, and 1:18.38 over the yielding turf course. Jockey Manoel Cruz angled Soldier's Dancer out entering the stretch, and the 4-year-old responded with a strong closing surge that carried him past the leaders in late stretch.

Ballonenostrikes, at 15-1 the longest price on the board along with entrymate Victory Alleged, gained a short advantage in early stretch. While no match for the winner, he held on stubbornly to outlast Interpatation by a nose to finish third. Drum Major, the 7-5 favorite in a field of eight older grass specialists, raced within easy striking distance but lacked the necessary closing response and finished another head back in fourth.

Soldier's Dancer, a gelded son of Lost Soldier owned by Herman Heinlein, paid $9.80. His winner's share of $150,000 swelled his lifetime earnings to $874,000. Final time for the nine furlongs was 1:54.69.