03/05/2016 6:36PM

Subtle Indian conquers Hot Springs for third straight win

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Ramon Vazquez guides Subtle Indian to his third win of the meet in the Hot Springs.

HOT SPRINGS, Ark.  - Subtle Indian won his third straight race of the meet at Oaklawn on Saturday, when he wired his rivals in the $100,000 Hot Springs Stakes. Subtle Indian won by a length over Den’s Legacy, while it was another neck back in third to Alsvid.

The Hot Springs served as the final local stepping-stone to next month’s Grade 3, $400,000 Count Fleet Sprint Handicap and that April 10 race is a goal for Subtle Indian, said trainer Robertino Diodoro.

Subtle Indian ($3.40) broke like a shot Saturday under jockey Ramon Vazquez and took the field through an opening quarter-mile in 21.78 seconds. He proceeded to lead through a half-mile in 44.71, pushed along by Alsvid. In the stretch, Subtle Indian kept Alsvid,  then Den’s Legacy, at bay while covering six furlongs on a fast track in 1:09.28.

“It made me a little nervous around the turn when [Alsvid] was putting pressure on him,” Diodoro said. “This horse is just getting better and better, and he proved it again today.”

Subtle Indian started his streak Jan. 15, when he won an optional $50,000 claiming race opening weekend at Oaklawn. He proceeded to capture an optional $62,500 claiming sprint Feb. 13, one start before the Hot Springs.

 Subtle Indian earned $60,000 for the win, his sixth from eight career starts. He has now earned $260,300. Subtle Indian races for his breeders, Mercedes Stables. He is a 4-year-old by Indian Charlie and was bred in Kentucky.

Ivan Fallunovalot was scratched from the Hot Springs. The race was run before an estimated ontrack crowd of 18,500.