With odds-on favorite Value Plus eliminated at the start, Klaravich Stables' front-running Read the Footnotes, ridden by Jerry Bailey, pulled away from Paddington in the stretch to win Sunday's $113,100 Nashua Stakes (gr. III) for 2-year-olds at Aqueduct.
Value Plus, the 4-5 choice in the nine-horse field, splayed coming out of the gate, temporarily losing his footing and dropping jockey John Velazquez, who was apparently not injured.
Read the Footnotes, a bay son of Smoke Glacken got away without incident from the rail while completing the one-turn mile in 1:36 2/5 on a fast track as the 5-2 second choice. He won by 2 1/4 lengths.
Under pressure from Paddington, ridden by Ramon Dominguez, throughout, Read the Footnotes covered the opening quarter mile in :23 2/5 and the half in :46 1/5. On the turn for home, Paddington edged slightly to the front after six furlongs in 1:10 2/5, but Read the Footnotes decided the issue in the homestretch. Who is Chris G., ridden by Mike Luzzi, was a non-threatening third, 6 1/2 lengths behind Paddington.
Richard Violette Jr. trains the Newe York-bred Read the Footnotes, a $320,000 sale purchase bred by Lawrence Goichman.
While happy for the victory, Violette said he hopes that Read the Footnotes' effort is not under-appreciated. He might even consider a return at Aqueduct in the $200,000 Remsen (gr. II) for 2-year-olds at nine furlongs.
"That wasn't exactly what we had planned," Violette said. "I didn't need Johnny (Velazquez) to fall off his horse. I'm glad he's okay. Jerry (Bailey) and I talked before the race and we thought that Paddington, with the blinkers on, could be out there with Value Plus. If that happened, we wanted to track those two. Jerry is a good jockey to have on your side when you need to call an audible.
"We'll definitely have to consider (the Remsen). Speed around two turns is more dangerous than it is out of that one-mile chute. We'll see how he comes out of this. We don't have to run there. I think he is going to be an awfully nice three-year-old."
Sixth in the Champagne at Belmont a month ago after pressing the pace and tiring, Read the Footnotes won his first stakes race. He earned $67,860 for the victory, pushing his career total to $120,660 for three victories in four starts.
The winner paid $7.80, $5.20 and $3.80. Paddington returned $7.30 and $6.70. Who is Chris G.'s show was $11.40. The $2 exacta was worth $46.80.
Big Booster, Tsuzomin, Good Reward, Charismatic Rob and Motivus followed. Value Plus was caught on the clubhouse turn. War Fever and China Coast were scratched.