Sent off as the 5-2 favorite, Silver Timber made his move leaving the turn and continued on to set a course record in the $119,100 Churchill Downs Turf Sprint (gr. IIIT) (VIDEO) on the Kentucky Oaks card.
A 7-year-old gelded son of Prime Timber trained by Chad Brown for Michael Dubb and Peter Randazzo’s High Grade Racing Stable, Silver Timber was settled in the second flight as Starfish Bay and Central City dueled through a blistering first quarter mile of :21.25.
Longshot Central City went to the front after the field rounded the turn, with a half-mile completed in :43.57, and Silver Timber began to make his move under Julien Leparoux. The winner took the lead in the final 50 yards, posting a neck victory in final time of :55.45 for five furlongs on firm turf, eclipsing the previous course record of :55.54 set by Unbridled Sidney in 2005.
“I got a perfect trip, a very good trip," Leparoux said. "My horse had a lot of speed already and they were very, very fast from the gate so I knew they were going fast, but I was comfortable all the way."
The winner paid $7.40, $4.00, and 3.20. Chamberlain Bridge rallied for second by a nose, paying $4.20 and $3.20, with Central City paying $9.20 in third. The exacta was worth $26.20 and the trifecta paid $571.00.
The winner, produced from the Alwuhush mare River Princess and bred in New York by Sez Who Thoroughbreds, has won 11 of 32 starts and earned $540,519. The victory was worth $69,411.
Previous to the CD Turf Sprint, Silver Timber won the Shakertown Stakes (gr. IIIT) by a neck at Keeneland in his only start this year April 10. He was claimed for $25,0000 on April 4, 2009, from Invictus Farm and trainer Linda Rice.
“He’s the best, his trainer is the best and Julien is the best," co-owner Dubb said. "I’m just a passenger along for the ride.
“We are aware of that (course record) and we’re not surprised," he added. "He won at Keeneland last time out and was only about 80%. He is just now fully cranked. We claimed him hoping he would be a useful New York state-bred, but he’s far exceeded expectations.
“You have to give Chad a lot of credit. His horses come first. He could have been here and got all the glory, but he stayed in New York with his horses. Right now as we speak he’s setting up his Saratoga operation.”