Updated on 09/17/2011 9:46AM

Upsets continue in Gulfstream stakes

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Bill Denver/Equi-Photo
Riddlesdown ($61.60) cruises to a 1 1/2-length upset victory over Macaw in Sunday's $100,000 Mac Diarmida Handicap at Gulfstream Park .

HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. - Riddlesdown continued the upset trend that has characterized the Gulfstream Park stakes schedule thus far this season, leading throughout en route to a 1 1-2 length victory over Macaw in Sunday's $100,000 .

Riddlesdown paid $61.60 to win and followed on the heels of the 25-1 Offlee Wild's victory in the Holy Bull Stakes the previous afternoon. Favorites have not won any of the seven stakes races decided here since the meet began on Jan. 3.

Riddlesdown set honest fractions of :25.31 seconds, :49.80 and 1:14.98 under jockey Roger Velez while allowed to lope along on an easy lead in the 1 3/8 mile Mac Diarmida. Turning for home, Riddlesdown still held a three length advantage over his nearest pursuer and had plenty in reserve to withstand the closing bid from the 8-1 Macaw. Just Listen, a 37-1 chance, outlasted 16-1 Williams News to finish third.

Riddlesdown covered the distance in 2:03.08 seconds over a firm track.

Whitmore's Conn, the 5-2 favorite in a full field of 12 older turf specialists, raced in mid-pack and had no rally, finishing in a dead heat for eighth with Mr. Pleasentfar. Rochester, the 117 pound highweight and second choice, raced in perfect striking position but had no rally and checked home a disappointing sixth.

"He only got beat four lengths to the same horses going 1 1/2 miles in his last start and he really doesn't want to go that far," said Leonard Dunne, assistant to trainer Niall O'Callaghan who was in Kentucky on Sunday. "He was still in the mix at the sixteenth pole that day so I can't understand why he was such a big price going 1 3/8 miles today. He's trained extremely well at Payson Park since that race and we thought he'd like the shorter distance."