08/05/2017 10:33PM

Special Envoy romps against Virginia-breds in Hansel Stakes

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Jim McCue/Maryland Jockey Club
Special Envoy posted an 8 1/4-length victory in Saturday's Hansel Stakes at Laurel Park.

Heavily favored Special Envoy romped by 8 1/4 lengths Saturday at Laurel Park in the $75,000 Hansel, one of four stakes on the card restricted to Virginia-foaled or -sired runners.

Backed to 1-20 favoritism against an outclassed field, Special Envoy led throughout in the 1 1/16-mile Hansel, completing the distance on yielding ground in 1:46.59 under Daniel Centeno. A 6-year-old gelded son of Stroll trained by Arnaud Delacour for owners Mr. and Mrs. Bertram Firestone, he scored his second stakes victory of the year, with both victories coming in Virginia-bred company.

Other stakes winners Saturday at Laurel included Northern Eclipse ($6.60), a neck winner of the Camptown for fillies and mares sprinting 5 1/2 furlongs on the grass; Two Notch Road ($10.60), who edged Tiz Our Time by a head in the Meadow Stable, another 5 1/2-furlong turf sprint; and longshot Sweet Sandy ($29.80), who rallied from last to take the 1 1/16-mile William M. Backer in the last of the four stakes on the day.