Presidentialaffair left little doubt as to which horse was best in the $190,000 Maryland Million Classic at Pimlico Race Course. Last year's runner-up in the 1 3/16-mile event galloped to a resounding 1 3/4-length victory as the 7-5 favorite.
The handle (money wagered at Pimlico on the Maryland Million card) was a record $4,642,444 for the event.
Jockey Stewart Elliott guided the 5-year-old son of Not For Love
quickly to the lead from his outside post, then dictated the tempo the rest of the way. Rivals came at them down the backstretch, around the turn and into the lane but could never make any real headway. Presidential Affair won in hand wile maintaining his advantage late.
Aggadan, the 9-5 second choice who chased relentlessly, finished second. Irish Colony, who charged after the leader with just as much determination, was third. The winner's time was 1:55.58.
The moderate splits were :24 1/5, :47 4/5, 1:11 2/5 and 1:36 2/5.
Presidentialaffair, owned by Edward Ciresa and Vincent Papapandrea, paid $4.80, $2.60 and $2.80 for his ninth win in 21 career outings. The $110,000 winning share gives him a career bankroll of $495,970.
Trainer Marty Ciresa said, "He's really fast and was the best horse on paper. Everything went perfectly. I still think he's a better horse than he shows us. If you make him feel good, he runs good for you, which basically means, he likes to have a couple of extra days off, so we give it him. We probably will give him some time off now and turn him out at Turning Point Farm in Maryland."