07/30/2006 11:00PM

Songster beaten at 1-10

Email
Horsephotos
Court Folly ($22), Calvin Borel up, wins Monday's $150,000 Amsterdam Stakes at Saratoga by 1 1/2 lengths.

SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. - Four-horse fields are rarely conducive to come-from-behind horses like Court Folly. A torrid pace, though, played right into hands of the late-running longshot, who ran down 1-10 favorite Songster en route to a shocking 1 1/2-length victory in Monday's $150,000 at Saratoga.

As expected, Court Folly lagged far back as El Nino and Noonmark slugged it out on the front end through fractions of 21.80 seconds and 44.38, stalked relentlessly by Songster. El Nino won the early duel but succumbed to Songster, who edged clear in early stretch under jockey Edgar Prado, seemingly on the way to his third straight victory.

Jockey Calvin Borel patiently kept Court Folly under a tight rein and nearly a dozen lengths behind the leaders for nearly a half-mile before unleashing his rally approaching the quarter pole. Court Folly fanned well wide continuing his bid into the stretch, ran down the tiring Songster inside the sixteenth pole, and won going away.

"He's very explosive, but he's got only one short run," said Court Folly's trainer, Ian Wilkes. "You usually don't get that kind of setup for a closer in a four-horse field, and to be honest, I didn't know if I could beat Songster even if the pace was fast, but I was glad to see them go 44 and change for the half-mile."

Court Folly's victory gave Wilkes, a longtime assistant to trainer Carl Nafzger, his first training win at Saratoga.

"I don't think it's sunk in yet that I've won a race at Saratoga," said Wilkes. "And doing it in a Grade 2 race is a tremendous honor."

Court Folly, a gelded son of Royal Academy owned by Robert T. Manfuso, ran six furlongs in 1:09.54 over a fast track and paid $22.

Wilkes says he will consider bringing Court Folly back in the Grade 1 Kings Bishop on Aug. 26.

Tom Albertrani, who trains Songster, said: "I thought he was in great position. Edgar said he responded but the other horse just outran him."