Fish Trappe Road Takes Over in Dwyer
Photo: Coglianese Photos/Chelsea Durand
Fish Trappe Road wins the 2016 Dwyer.

Fish Trappe Road was knocking on the door for his first graded win, and found the path to victory July 9 in the $500,000 Dwyer Stakes (gr. III) at Belmont ParkWatch Video

Martin Racing Stable's 3-year-old son of Trappe Shot   became the first black-type winner for his sire when he came off a runner-up finish by 1 1/4 lengths to Tom's Ready in the June 11 Woody Stephens (gr. II) going seven furlongs at Belmont, and raced clear by the same margin to claim the one-mile Dwyer over 6-5 choice Economic Model.

Jockey Luis Saez had the gray or roan colt well-positioned after breaking alertly from the far outside in a field of eight 3-year-olds; he traded strides on the outside for third with Economic Model as 65-1 shot The Great Whiteway and graded stakes-placed Laoban   showed the way through an opening quarter in :23.35 and a half in :46.47.

"He usually breaks very quick and fights you the whole time," said Saez. "But today, he was so relaxed. He was perfect and he finished strong."

Fish Trappe Road moved smoothly up into striking position three wide and took the lead as six furlongs went in 1:10.42, then held off Economic Model's bid and the late advance of Tale of S'avall. The final time was 1:34.84 on a fast track.

Off at odds of 3-1 for trainer Bret Calhoun, Fish Trappe Road returned $8.70, $3.90, and $3.10. Economic Model paid $2.90 and $2.40, and Tale of S'avall brought $4.50. Voluntario, Laoban, Unbridled Outlaw, Swipe, and The Great Whiteway completed the order of finish.

"When the post positions came out, I felt really, really good," Calhoun said. "It gave us a lot of options out there. He didn't have to be pushed. Luis rode him perfectly.

"I've been playing this race out in my head for a couple of days since it was drawn, and it played out exactly the way I thought it would." 

Trainer Chad Brown, who conditions Economic Model, said his horse didn't like being hemmed in along the rail before switching out for the stretch run under jockey Irad Ortiz Jr. 

"My horse ran well," Brown remarked. "Irad said he wasn't comfortable inside there, I wish he could have got him out. Luis Saez rode a smart race and stayed in the clear. His horse ran really well. It's a good field. We were hemmed in the whole way. We'll regroup after this. We'll wait and see how he comes out of this."

The winner got his sophomore season back on track May 7 with a Churchill Downs allowance score after finishing seventh in the Lecomte Stakes (gr. III) Jan. 16 at Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots. He now has two wins and two seconds from four Belmont starts; he broke his maiden at the New York track last September in his fourth career start, and immediately ran second in the Sleepy Hollow Stakes there in October to conclude his juvenile year.

"He's matured a lot," Calhoun said. "He was a big kid at 2, played 24-7. Now, it's all just coming together mentally and physically. I don't know if we're going to stretch him out (to 1 1/8 miles) in the Jim Dandy (gr. II, July 30 at Saratoga Race Course). We'll possibly look at the King's Bishop (gr. I, Aug. 27 at Saratoga)."

Fish Trappe Road was bred in New York by Rhapsody Farm and Jon Davis out of the Cure the Blues mare Electric Shock, and was a $95,000 purchase by his current connections from Crupi's New Castle Farm consignment to the Ocala Breeders' Sales Co.'s March 2015 sale of 2-year-olds in training. He went through the ring on one prior occasion, when sold to St. Elias for $140,000 from the Rhapsody Farm/Hidden Lake Farm consignment to the Fasig-Tipton New York Saratoga preferred New York-bred yearling sale. 

The Dwyer win improves Fish Trappe Road's career record to three wins and three seconds from nine starts, for earnings of $518,185.

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