Martin Racing Stable's Marchman strung together his second straight graded stakes win in three weeks with a decisive victory May 2 in the $167,550 Twin Spires Turf Sprint (gr. IIIT) at Churchill Downs. (VIDEO)
The 4-year-old bay son of Sharp Humor—Sookie Sookie, by Indian Charlie, came into the five-furlong turf contest off a wire-to-wire victory at odds of 23-1 April 12 at Keeenland in the Shakertown Stakes (gr. IIIT), which was run at 5 1/2 furlongs at Keeneland. Jockey Robby Albarado was in the irons for both victories.
In an evenly matched field of nine horses, 3-1 favorite Sum of the Parts took the lead early but was quickly challenged by second choice Marchman, also off at 3-1. The two leaders took the field through fractions of :22.08 and :44.23 over firm turf.
While Sum of the Parts faded in the stretch, Undrafted put in a late rally on the firm turf and flew past Positive Side to take second. Marchman hit the wire 1 1/2 lengths in front of Undrafted, who was a neck in front of Positive Side. The final time was :56.04.
"He broke sharp; I think that was the key," said trainer Bret Calhoun. "He's in very good form. He's getting better and better. He can on dirt, but right now we'll keep him sprinting on turf."
Albarado said he and Calhoun anticipated Sum of the Parts would take the lead.
"Obviously when there is only one horse in front you it is not hard to get an outside position," he said. "I felt very confident in him. I squeezed on him, and he went on by commandingly."
Marchman was bred in Kentucky by Lynn Jones and Kathy Jones. Owner William Martin bought the colt for $90,000 out of the 2012 Ocala Breeders' Sales April 2-year-old in training sale out of the consignment of Seahorse Stables.
The winner paid $8.80, $5, and $3.40, while Undrafted paid $7 and $5. Positive Side paid $3.20. The $2 exacta paid $61.80, and the $2 trifecta paid $231.20.
Marchman is 2-for-2 over the Churchill turf after breaking his maiden at the five-furlong distance over firm ground last June. The bay colt improved his career mark to 5-2-3 in 13 starts with earnings of $325,354. He has won four six starts on grass.