Summer Front used his usual come-from-behind tactics as he charged down the stretch on the outside and prevailed over front-runner El Commodore in the April 20 Miami Mile Handicap (gr. IIIT) at Calder Casino & Race Course (VIDEO).
Trained by Christophe Clement for Waterford Stable, 4-year-old Summer Front was sent off as the 4-5 favorite in the one-mile race worth $100,000, which was contested over good turf. The bay son of War Front was bred in Kentucky by Graceville Breeding and is out of the El Prado mare Rose of Summer.
The Miami Mile marked the second graded stakes victory and fifth overall for Summer Front, who scored back-to-back wins in last year’s Hill Prince Stakes (gr. IIIT) at Belmont Park and Duluth Stakes at Saratoga Race Course. He entered the Miami Mile off a third-place effort in his seasonal debut, an allowance optional claiming contest over the Gulfstream Park turf.
Summer Front, a $475,000 purchase at the 2011 Keeneland April 2-year-olds in training sale, now holds a record of 6-1-3 from 12 starts, for earnings of $471,140.
"He was a very unlucky horse last year," trainer Christophe Clement said after the Miami Mile. "I messed him up a little bit by running him at the wrong distance, but now we'll try to keep him at a mile.
"Now he'll go to New York, and we'll look for his next race there."
In the Miami Mile, 12-1 outsider El Commodore went to the lead early for Orlando Bocachica, where he remained throughout the majority of the race while recording fractions of :24.16, :48.57, and 1:11.71.
Summer Front, rallying from fourth at the quarter pole for Joe Bravo, took over on the outside at the sixteenth pole and drew away to win in a final time of 1:35.31.
"The entire time I was scoping things out and watching the horses around us," jockey Joe Bravo said of his race-tactics down the backstretch. "And all the time, my horse was in full control."
Kinsman Stable’s El Commodore finished second, 1 1/2 lengths in front of 10-1 shot Empire Builder.
"My horse really ran just an eighth-of-a-mile," Bravo said. "That was it."
"He dug in late and he tried so hard," jockey Orlando Bocachica added of El Commodore. "That other horse was just too good for him. But I'm proud of the way he ran."
In his first start over the Calder course, Summer Front carried high weight of 120 pounds and paid $3.80, $3.00, and $2.20; El Commodore returned $8.80 and $4.80; and Empire Builder paid $4.60 to show. The $2 exacta was worth $38.20, while the trifecta paid $200.20.