Pletcher's Limehouse Sweet in Hutcheson

Pletcher's Limehouse Sweet in Hutcheson
Photo: Equi-Photo, Gary I. Rothstein
Limehouse (2), with John Velazquez aboard, sprints ahead of Deputy Storm (6) to win the Hutcheson.
Dogwood Stable's Limehouse, making his first start in more than four months, came off the rail in the stretch to collar stablemate Deputy Storm and drew off to a 2 1/4-length victory in $150,000 Hutcheson Stakes (gr. II) for 3-year-olds at Gulfstream Park Saturday.

Limehouse, a chestnut colt by Grand Slam, got his 3-year-old campaign for trainer Todd Pletcher off to a strong start, completing the seven-furlong Hutcheson in 1:22 1/5 on a fast track.

Patiently ridden by John Velazquez, Limehouse had a dream trip, settling in behind the pacesetter Deputy Storm, who led Harbour Gate and Bourbon N Blues through quick early splits of :21 3/5 and :43 3/5. Coming out of the home turn, Deputy Storm put away his rivals and steered for home under Jerry Bailey a couple of lengths in front.

Limehouse found room as the other leaders fell away and drew even with Deputy Storm in mid-stretch after six furlongs in 1:08 4/5, gradually pulling away. Saratoga County, with Eibar Coa aboard, came from well back to finish third, beaten by four lengths for it all.

Limehouse's last start was a fading third to Eurosilver in the 1 1/16-mile Lanes' End Futurity (gr. II) at Keeneland in his last start Oct. 4. He won the Chimney Juvenile and Bashford Manor (gr. III) at Churchill Downs earlier in his 2-year-old campaign. Overall, he's won four of seven starts with earnings of $350,435.

From the Dixieland Band mare Dixieland Blues, Limehouse was bred in Florida by Cheryl A. Curtin. He was purchased for $140,000 in the Fasig-Tipton Saratoga August 2002 yearling sale for $140,000.

Limehouse paid $10.40, $5.80 and $4. Deputy Storm returned $10 and $6.60. Saratoga County's show was $9.60. The $2 exacta was worth $79.

WynnDot Comma, the 2-1 favorite in the field of 10, encountered traffic trouble on the final turn under Joe Bravo, but lacked much of a kick after angling out in the stretch and finished fourth. He was followed by Weigelia, Blushing Indian, Bourbon N Blues, Harbour Gate, Ghost Mountain and Bachelor Blues.

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