Say Florida Sandy Reaches $2 Million in Defeat

Say Florida Sandy Reaches $2 Million in Defeat
Photo: Adam Coglianese
Crossing Point outlasted 9-year-old Say Florida Sandy to win Saturday's $80,550 Paumonok Handicap.
Nancy Clark and Fred Heyman's favored Crossing Point, pressed into running a swift early pace, weathered the storm and outlasted 9-year-old Say Florida Sandy near the wire to win Saturday's $80,550 Paumonok Handicap for three-year-olds and up at six furlongs on Aqueduct's inner dirt track by a half-length.

The victory was the first of the year for 6-year-old Allen's Prospect gelding and ended a two-race string of runner-up finishes.

In winning his ninth race in 21 starts, Crossing Point and jockey Ryan Fogelsonger never had an easy moment. They were hooked from the start by 55-1 longshot Unreal Party and jockey Rafael Mojica Jr., who pressed them through an opening quarter mile of :21 3/5 and a half mile of :44 2/5 on the fast track.

Although he had a comfortable lead entering the stretch, the hot pace set up for a rally by Say Florida Sandy, the leading money-earning New York-bred of all time, who was making his 93rd career start. He put in a valiant run, but the wire reached Crossing Point first in 1:09 4/5.

Those who helped make Crossing Point the post time favorite were rewarded with a $3.70 win payoff.

"He set quick fractions today, but he had a little more left than he had last time we were up here (second in the Fall Highweight on Nov. 28)," said John Poe, assistant to winning trainer Ben Feliciano Jr.

In defeat, Say Florida Sandy earned $16,110 to boost his career earnings to $2,004,917.

"I'm very proud of him," said trainer Victor Cuadra. "Getting to $2 million is a big accomplishment. He loves running and tries so hard."

(Chart, Equibase)

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