12/06/2014 8:11PM

Stand and Salute rallies inside to take Gold Rush

Shane Micheli/ Vassar Photography
Stand and Salute, ridden by Russell Baze, prevails by a half-length in the Gold Rush for 2-year-olds.

Stand and Salute, who just graduated at the same one-mile distance in his debut here, sat behind a contested pace before rallying from the inside to grab the lead as he held off late-running Broughton Kitten  to win the $75,210 Gold Rush Stakes at Golden Gate Fields on Saturday.

Great Lou and Rye Patch dueled through honest fractions with favored Unblunted also involved early in the race. Rye Patch was able to gain control down the backstretch but remained under pressure from Great Lou until the field of seven 2-year-olds turned for home.

Stand and Salute ($13) saved ground while racing in midpack during the early running and had begun to move into contention when the field reached the quarter pole.

Broughton Kitten, who broke a step slowly, was last early but was moving strongly four wide and in the clear as the field turned for home.

Rye Patch continued in front as the field entered the stretch, but Stand and Salute had room to the inside and made his move as Broughton Kitten was rallying wide. The two pushed past the pacesetter and dueled to the wire with Stand and Salute holding on to win by one-half length in 1:39.26. Sandor the Hound finished well to be third,  another length back.

Winning jockey Russell Baze said Stand and Salute  had been training well since his Oct. 25 maiden win and had a good trip.

“He split horses and made a good move coming into the lane,” said Baze. “It wasn’t a very big hole but he fired right through it. It’s always nice when you don’t have to worry about them being scared of horses. As big as he is, he shouldn’t be scared of nothing.

“He acts like he’s got even more talent than he showed today. I think he’s going to develop into a pretty darn nice colt.”

Stand and Salute, a Red Oak Stable homebred by Saint Anddan, earned $45,000 for his second career win in four starts, lifting his career total to $71,770. The Jerry Hollendorfer trainee ran second as the favorite in the Cavonnier Juvenile at Santa Rosa in his debut and trailed unbeaten multiple stakes winner Ocho Ocho Ocho in his second start.