Bustin Stones led from gate to wire and held off a late challenge by Lord Snowdon to notch his fifth consecutive win, and first graded-stakes score, in the General George Handicap (gr. II) at Laurel Park Feb. 18.
Under jockey Ramon Dominguez, Bustin Stones set a pressured pace alongside the rail while being rated. The pair set fractions of :23.05, :46.37, and 1:16.60. Bustin Stones responded to some left-handed pressure inside the sixteenth pole and shook clear in the upper stretch to hold on to prevail by a head. The final time for the seven furlongs was 1:24.47.
After breaking a step slow under jockey Jeremy Rose, Lord Snowdon saved ground while being outrun early in the contest. Rose angled out the son of Seeking the Goldleaving the mid turn, and then went four wide for the drive toward the wire, just missing out on catching the winner.
Lord Snowdon and Premium Wine, who closed gamely to get up for third, exchanged bumps in the stretch, but the results of the race remained unchanged.
Bruce Levine trains the New York-bred son of City Zip out of the Prospectors Gamble mare Shesasurething for owner-breeder Roddy Valente.
Entering the General George, the 4-year-old Bustin Stones had won all four of his previous lifetime starts, including three straight in stakes company. Most recently, he scored a 1 1/2-length win in the Promonroe Stakes Jan. 21 at Aqueduct.
Bustin Stones returned $6.20, $3.80, and $3.20. Lord Snowden paid $5.40 and $4.60, while Premium Wine returned $6.20. The 2-1 exacta paid $37.20 and the 2-1-3 trifecta netted $210.60.