Prince of Wales: Golden Moka Makes Believers

Prince of Wales: Golden Moka Makes Believers
Photo: Michael Burns
Undefeated Golden Moka drew off for a 2 3/4-length win in the Prince of Wales Stakes at Fort Erie.

Undefeated Golden Moka, a Panamanian invader owned by by disabled jockey Rene Douglas as part of Good Friends Stable, produced a scintillating a 2 3/4-length win in the $482,600 Prince of Wales Stakes, the second leg of the Canadian Triple Crown July 25 at Fort Erie.

Ridden by Anthony Stephen, Golden Moka battled Mobil Unit on the front end of the 1 3/16-mile test for Canadian-bred 3-year-olds, then pulled away in the stretch run from Mobil Unit and Queen's Plate winner Big Red Mike to win easily while ridden out at odds of 10-1. The final time was 1:56.45 on a fast strip, more than three seconds off the track record.

After three wins in Panama to begin his career, Golden Moka was making his first start for trainer Brian Lynch after an eight-month layoff. It was also the first try beyond six furlongs for the son of Golden Missile  --Sunset Seeker, by Seeking the Gold.

Golden Moka was originally an $8,000 Keeneland yearling buy in September 2008. Douglas analyzed video of Golden Moka's three wins in Panama and bought a piece of the chestnut colt for an undisclosed sum with his physician, Dr. Hilton Gordon, former Chicago Blackhawks' coach Denis Savard, Dave Flanzbaum and Joe Casciatto.

Douglas has not walked since he was crushed by his mount Born to Be in a fall during the stretch run of the Arlington Matron at Arlington Park May 23, 2009. He suffered spinal cord and vertebrae damage, a broken neck and ribs, and a fractured sternum in the spill. He had numerous setbacks after his initial surgeries, including urinary and colon infections and pneumonia, which set back his physical rehabilitation.

Big Red Mike, coming off a 1 1/2-length win in the Queen's Plate (Can-I) on Polytrack, led the opening quarter mile in his first start on dirt in :23.97, but fell into a stalking position off the rail as Mobil Unit and Golden Moka vied through a half-mile in :47.12 and six furlongs in 1:11.54 .

Golden Moka, forcing the pace along the inside, was determined through the lane as he left Mobil Unit, ridden by David Clark, behind in the final furlong. Mobil Unit finished one length clear of Big Red Mike and jockey Eurico Da Silva, who edged Queen's Plate runner-up Hotep by a neck for the show spot.

Mobthewarrior, Captain Canuck and Who We Gunna Call trailed in the seven-horse field. Dark Cloud Dancer was a stewards's scratch.

Bred in Ontario by Adena Springs, Golden Moka earned $289,560 for his fourth consecutive win, increasing his career bankroll to $301,695. He won the Clasico Sociedad de Duenos de Caballos in his last start in Panama by a half-length Nov. 22.

Under equal weight of 126 pounds, Golden Moka paid $22.70, $9.70 and $5.10 as the fifth choice in the field. Mobil Unit, sent off at 13-1, returned $11.40 and $5.60 while completing a $325.70 exacta. Big Red MIke was $2.10 to show as part of a $639.10 trifecta.

The final leg of the Canadian Triple Crown is the $500,000 Breeders' Stakes at 1 1/1 miles on the Woodbine turf Aug. 15.

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