10/24/2015 5:41PM

Tiger Ride holds on for victory in off-the-turf Valley View

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Barbara D. Livingston
Tiger Ride wins the Valley View Stakes by a length Saturday at Keeneland.

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Graham Motion is from England and Edgar Prado from Peru, but their foundations in American racing are closely intertwined from the late 1980s in Maryland.

Both men happily recalled those bygone days Saturday after teaming for their third stakes victory of the Keeneland fall meet. Tiger Ride, with Prado aboard, held off the late-running Include Betty in a one-length triumph in the $150,000 Valley View Stakes, the final stakes of the regular meet.

“How about winning three stakes with Edgar Prado?” Motion asked rhetorically. “It’s just like the old days. We go back a long ways. It’s very exciting.”

“I can’t thank Mr. Motion enough,” said Prado. “I’ve been very blessed in my career to ride horses for him.”

Tiger Ride returned $15.80 as fifth choice in a field of 10 3-year-old fillies after finishing the 1 1/16-mile distance of the 25th Valley View in 1:43.99 over a fast main track.

The nature of the race was altered dramatically about 90 minutes beforehand when Keeneland officials decided to move it off the turf course, with the impending Breeders’ Cup foremost in mind. The predictable shrinkage of an original lineup of 16 ensued.

“I was pretty comfortable running her on the dirt,” said Motion. “I would’ve preferred turf, and I think the filly’s future is on the turf, but I was fine with it.”

Earlier at this meet, Motion and Prado teamed to win twin turf marathons – the Sycamore with Holiday Star and the Dowager with Kitten’s Point.

Under misty skies and before an ontrack crowd of 15,978, longshot Calypso Beat set the early fractions while Tiger Ride lagged closer to the back while always in good position. As the leaders tired, Tiger Ride kicked into gear and only had to fend off a looping move by Include Betty, the 5-2 favorite who was even farther back in the early running.

“When I swung her outside, she really had a nice kick,” said Prado.

Mrs McDougal finished third, another 2 1/4 lengths behind Include Betty and another 1 1/4 lengths before Prado’s Sweet Ride.

Tiger Ride, a Kentucky-bred daughter of Candy Ride, was bred by her owner, the Dixiana Farms of Bill Shively. She now has won 5 of 9 starts and earned $333,680. Before Saturday, she had three prior races over dirt, winning an ungraded, off-the-turf stakes at Indiana Grand in the slop in July.

The Valley View is ostensibly a Grade 3, but in cases of a surface switch, the grade is automatically and temporarily stripped, pending a subsequent review by the American Graded Stakes Committee.

The $2 exacta (9-3) paid $65, the $1 trifecta (9-3-13) returned $252.30, and the 10-cent superfecta (9-3-13-2) was worth $283.17.

Two earlier Saturday races also were transferred from the turf to the main track. While it was only somewhat dank and moist here all day, a more threatening rain settled over Keeneland shortly after the 10th and last race was run.

Saturday was the 17th and last day of a “regular” fall meet that began Oct. 2. Still to come: the Prelude to the Cup on Thursday and the two Breeders’ Cup dates Friday and Saturday.