Saratoga Race Report (Cont.)
Updated: Tuesday, August 6, 2002 2:22 PM
Posted: Sunday, August 4, 2002 7:27 PM
Photo: AP/NYRA/Adam Coglianese
Medaglia d'Oro rolls to victory in the Jim Dandy.
In the paddock before the race, Bailey and trainer Bobby Frankel agreed on a plan for their third stakes victory together of the Saratoga season. They wanted Medaglia d'Oro to get to the inside from post six in the field of nine as quickly as possible.
"I knew that the track bias was so strong," Frankel said. "I just mentioned that to Jerry and he said it was probably three lengths better than the rest of the track. He said he was going to try to make it, but I didn't realize he'd make it that easy.
"The way the track has been playing, it looked like a jet stream on the inside."
One of Bailey's strengths, and a reason why he has won seven Saratoga riding titles, is his ability to place horses where he wants them. He had Medaglia d'Oro on the rail in less than a furlong.
"There's been a severe inside speed bias all day long," Bailey said. "If I could get to the rail with the lead before the first turn, that's where I was going to be. He just broke well and we got to the front. I was real happy once we were clear. He's just better than these."
With the disqualification of Quest, Overbrook Farm's Gold Dollar finished second. Godolphin's Essence of Dubai was third.
The Jim Dandy was Frankel's fourth stakes victory at the meet and sixth winner overall.
"I was planning on winning this race. I wasn't going to give this race away," Frankel said. "I hope he didn't run too good today for the Travers (gr. I)."Listen Up
In the race run prior to the Whitney, the six-furlong Amsterdam Stakes (gr. II) for 3-year-olds, Listen Here made a last-to-first move under jockey Pat Day to win by 2 1/4 lengths in 1:09.58.
The Amsterdam marked the return to the races of Michael Tabor's Mayakovsky, who was making his first start since finishing fourth in the Santa Anita Derby (gr. I) on April 6. In his debut at Saratoga last summer, the son of Matty G broke the long-standing track record for 5 1/2 furlongs. At the end of the meet, he ran second to Came Home in the Hopeful Stakes (gr. I).
Boston Common, the unbeaten Greatness, and Heavyweight Champ engaged Mayakovsky through early fractions of :21.86 and :44.75. Boston Common, trained by Michael Pino and ridden by Edgar Prado, had a head in front after a half-mile and was leading by 3 1/2 lengths at the top of the stretch.
Running last of eight, better than 16 lengths off the pace after the first quarter, Listen Here finished fast in the stretch for the decisive victory. It was the first win for the Gulch colt since the Nashua Stakes (gr. III) on Oct. 26. He began his career for trainer Bill Mott with three consecutive victories.
"We wanted to keep him at sprint distances and there aren't many races around," Mott said. "This horse has really been knocking on the door with seconds and thirds. He's run some credible races, but hasn't really gotten the job done. Today, he got the pace he needed and Pat was willing to let him settle."
Bold Truth closed for third. Mayakovsky was fourth.
"I don't think the pace hurt him so much," said Mayakovsky's trainer, Patrick Biancone. "He was cutting back from a mile and an eighth to six furlongs. He ran a good race. You can't expect him to win every time. I'm not overly disappointed with the race."
Mayakovsky is headed to the seven-furlong King's Bishop Stakes (gr. I) on Aug. 24 for a sprint rematch with Came Home.
Mandy's Gold, trained by Michael Gorham for his brother John's Steeplechase Farm, turned in a gate-to-wire victory in the $108,500 Honorable Miss Handicap. Mandy's Gold completed the six furlongs over a sloppy track in 1:09.24.
The Honorable Miss was expected to be another chapter in the Xtra Heat-Gold Mover series. When Gold Mover picked up two pounds off her win over Xtra Heat in the Princess Rooney Handicap (gr. II) at Calder Race Course, trainer Mark Hennig said the 10-pound advantage wasn't enough and would not enter her against Xtra Heat. Gold Mover did run in the Honorable Miss after trainer John Salzman elected to skip the race with Xtra Heat, but couldn't handle the mud and finished fourth.
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