Coffee Boy slipped through along the inside for jockey Jermaine Bridgmohan in the stretch and upset 1-10 choice D' Funnybone in the $194,000 Carry Back Stakes (gr. II) (VIDEO) on Summit of Speed day at Calder Casino & Race Course July 10.
Just three 3-year-olds went to the post to challenge D' Funnybone, a three-time grade II winner in sprints this year, but Coffee Boy proved best by one length in the six-furlong Carry Back. Trained by Marty Wolfson, the son of Yonaguska—Heythisis Sarah, by Unbridled's Song , tallied his first graded stakes win for owner Gary Barber.
Racing off the pace for Bridgmohan, Coffee Boy got through an opening in deep stretch and inched away from D' Funnybone, who had outfought Dream of Atlantis for the early lead but could not hold off the winner. The final time was 1:11.55 over a fast track.
After an evenly-matched opening quarter-mile of :22.16, D' Funnybone, ridden by Edgar Prado, inched away to a half-length advantage over Dream of Atlantis while completing a half-mile in :45.76. D' Funnybone continued to lead narrowly into the stretch and opened daylight by 1 1/2 lengths mid-stretch when unexpectedly challenged by Coffee Boy, who was last while saving ground after a half-mile.
"That was our game plan going in (to sit off the pace and save ground)," said Bridgmohan, who angled Coffee Boy off the rail a bit to avoid traffic. "We just drafted off of them and found some daylight (at the rail). He was pretty brave. Luckily, we squeezed by on the inside. He was there for me when I needed him."
Get Away Farm bred the winning dark bay or brown colt in Florida.
Coffee Boy won the Carry Back prep race, the Unbridled Stakes at Calder in his most recent start June 12, rolling three wide late to score by three-quarters of a length. He ran second in a minor stakes on a sloppy track at Calder prior to that. He debuted earlier this year with trainer Todd Pletcher at Gulfstream Park, breaking his maiden by 8 1/2 lengths over Florida-bred rivals in his second start March 18.
“We decided to change tactics a little today," Wolfson said. "He ran a good race last time, but I thought they were up a little too close to a 44 and 4/5 pace. Jermaine rode a great race today. He was patient and never came off the rail. He’ll most likely go on the road next, probably Saratoga, but Gary Barber is from California and he might want to run him out there, which would be fine.”
Overall, Coffee Boy has won three of five races with one second and earnings of $207,750. The Carry Back victory was worth $124,000 to his connections.
Sent off as the second choice, Coffee Boy carried 119 pounds— three fewer than the favorite—and paid $10.80 and $2.10. He topped a $15.20 exacta. D' Funnybone, coming off a 3 1/4-length win in the Woody Stephens Stakes (gr. II) at Belmont Park June 5 for trainer Richard Dutrow Jr., returned $2.10. There was no show wagering.
“No excuses; he ran his race," Prado said of D' Funnybone. "We were sitting forwardly placed, made our move around the turn into the lead and in the stretch he kicked on for me. The other horse just had a little more than we did at the end of it.”
Peace at Dawn, ridden by Kent Desormeaux, tired in the stretch but still finished third while 4 3/4 lengths lengths farther back. Dream of Atlantis was last. Bernie the Maestro scratched.