Extra distance and a weight break were the keys for James Karp’s homebred Newsdad to exact revenge on Simmard, as the son of Arch came from off the pace to win the $150,000 Pan American (gr. IIT) (VIDEO) against a short field March 24 at Gulfstream Park.
The 4-year-old colt was stretching back out to 1 1/2 miles on the Gulfstream turf after being beaten a nose by Simmard at 1 3/8 miles in the Feb. 26 Mac Diarmida (gr. IIT) in his last start. He was also carrying 117 pounds this time, six pounds less than his rival. After trailing for most of the way in a field of four, he made his winning move on the final turn under Julien Leparoux and had plenty left in the stretch en route to his two–length victory.
It was the first graded stakes win for Newsdad, who was bred in Kentucky and is out of the Pulpit mare Storm Tracer. It was also his second win this season over the Gulfstream turf course, as he romped in a 1 7/16-mile optional claimer on Jan. 28. The colt is trained by Bill Mott, who won the event for the fifth time.
The final time over the firm turf was 2:24.93. Hailstone finished second, a neck in front of Simmard. Harrods Creek was last.
Harrods Creek and Jose Lezcano set the early pace in the Pan American, clicking of legitimate splits of :25.03 and :49.05 while Simmard gave chase. Hailstone raced in third, while Newsdad was in no hurry at the back but never too far off the pace.
Harrods Creek, also trained by Mott, continued to show the way through three-quarters in 1:13.37 and a mile in 1:37.04, but Newsdad was being floated out three-wide by that point and took over coming off the final turn. He led Simmard by 1 1/2 lengths at the eighth pole and Hailstone was right in the hunt, but the winner steadily edged away for a comfortable victory.
"It’s definitely tougher to ride in these types of races with short fields, especially from the rail with the (7-10) favorite," Leparoux said. "You pretty much have two options. You can either go and try to clear on the lead or take back. (Mott’s) other horse (Harrod’s Creek) seemed to have more speed so I just took back and tried to get in the clear. I was able to make a little bit of a move pretty early on to get in the clear and from there it was perfect. He made a run around the far turn and finished good.”
Newsdad improved to 4-2-3 from 15 lifetime starts and increased his earnings to $323,140.
Sent off as the 7-10 favorite, Newsdad paid $3.40 and $2.20. There was no show wagering. Hailstone returned $5.60 to place. The exacta (1-4) was worth $19.60.