Iron County Farms Sharbayan rallied in the final furlong under a hand ride by Pat Day for a 1 3/4-length victory in the $138,200 Sycamore Breeders' Cup Stakes (gr. IIIT) at Keeneland on Saturday. The victory was the fourth in a row for the gelding trained by Wally Dollase.
Settled into third early behind pacesetters Riddlesdown and favorite Revved Up, Sharbayan and Day were content to bide their time until rallying while five wide into the stretch. Cetewayo, a 9-year-old horse trained by Michael Dickinson, as far back until the top of the stretch when he made a strong move between horses but was unable to catch the winner.
Sharbayan completed the 1 1/2 miles on turf in stakes-record time of 2:29 2/5 and paid $7.80, $4.60, and $3.20. Cetewayo's runner-up effort was worth $11.20 and $7.00, with Deputy Strike paying $8.80 for third.
"We had a wonderful trip," Day said. "We saved ground all the way and he responded when called upon and drew away. You couldn't ask for anything better."
Brice Blanc, who rode Cetewayo, said, "He still can do it! He's got his confidence going for him, and has a good turn of foot. He felt them going and he took off. He didn't get too excited."
A lightly-race 5-year-old Irish-bred son of Doyoun, Sharbayan has won six of 11 lifetime starts. Previous to the Sycamore, he won an allowance at Keeneland last spring, followed with a victory in optional-claiming company at Churchill, and won an allowance at Arlington Park. The gelding was a group III winner in France before coming to the U.S. after his 2001 campaign.