07/21/2013 3:50PM

Woodbine: So Long George scores first stakes win in Nijinsky

Michael Burns
So Long George and jockey Emma-Jayne Wilson won the Grade 2 Nijinsky Stakes by three-quarters of a length Sunday.

ETOBICOKE, Ontario – So Long George ($23.60) notched his first stakes win after an ideal inside trip under Emma-Jayne Wilson in the $216,000 Nijinsky at Woodbine on Sunday.

So Long George stalked in fourth on the backstretch and through the turn in the Grade 2 fixture. Artic Fern and Grand Arch linked up on the lead through moderate fractions over the firm ground before Grand Arch assumed command in the stretch.

So Long George came through an opening along the rail near the top of the lane and went on to prevail by three-quarters of a length over 22-1 shot Hampstead Heath.

“George was tracking them easy,” Wilson said. “I just [went] where he took me. He’s a pretty easy horse to ride, so I just went along with the flow of the race. I was confident that he’d have a nice late kick, and he gave it to me.”

Grand Arch, the 2-1 favorite, weakened to finish a length back in third. He was followed by Classic Bryce, Valentino Beauty, Hotep, Riding the River, Pool Play, Pender Harbour, and Artic Fern. The final time for about nine furlongs was 1:45.28.

So Long George collected $120,000 for Up Hill Stable and trainer John Charalambous.