O.K. Mikie, who started his career as a bottom-level claiming horse, captured the $83,175 Golden State Mile for 3-year-olds at Golden Gate Fields Sunday.
Last early, Adalberto Lopez threaded his way through traffic on the final turn to reach the leaders in the stretch. O.K, Mikie dug in to get up in the final strides by a half-length over 9-5 favorite Bending Strings. The final time was 1:37 2/5 on a fast track.
Bending Strings finished three lengths in front of Point Dume.
O.K. Mikie, a California-bred bay gelding by Michael's Flyer, broke his maiden for $12,500 in his debut at Bay Meadows Fair in August. Trainer Jerry McArthur claimed him for Charles Lo from breeder Ellen Jackson for $25,000 on Nov. 2 and moved him into stakes company. He ran third in the Gold Rush Dec. 13 and was second to Skipaslew in the Golden Gate Derby (gr. III) on a wet fast track Jan. 10.
He improved to 4-1-1 in seven starts while earning $49,425 for the victory.
The second choice in a field of eight, O.K. Mikie paid $10.80, $3.80 and $2.80. Bending Strings returned $3.20 and $2.80. Point Dume's show was $3.20.