Boat Trip, red and green silks, wins the Hollywood Turf Express.

Boat Trip, red and green silks, wins the Hollywood Turf Express.

Benoit Photography

Boat Trip Wins Express; Triple Heater for 2nd

Son of Harlan's Holiday surges as pacesetters hit wire together Dec. 8 at Hollywood.

Boat Trip earned his fourth win in five tries on the Betfair Hollywood Park turf when he came from off the pace to capture the $100,000 Hollywood Turf Express (VIDEO), a race that featured an extremely rare triple dead-heat for second Dec. 8.

No Silent, Chips All In, and even-money favorite Unbridled's Note finished in a draw for the runner-up slot in the Turf Express, a formerly graded race contested for the first time since 2008 at Hollywood Park.

Just five contested the six-furlong race, and three of them were coming out of the Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint (gr. IT) Nov. 2 at Santa Anita Park. Boat Trip, who was 12th after a rough start, was one of them.

Some five weeks later, the 4-year-old son of Harlan's Holiday took full advantage of a three-pronged pace duel to post a half-length victory while timed in 1:08.45 over firm turf.

With No Silent on the inside, Unbridled's Note on the outside, and Chips All In between them, a solid pace duel ensued. That served Boat Trip and jockey Joe Talamo just fine, able to track the leaders while saving ground into the stretch. Angled to the far outside in mid-stretch as the front-runners battled on, Boat Trip rallied under left-handed urging and swept past in the final strides.

It was somewhat fitting that the next three finished in a dead-heat as there was little separating them at any point of the race. Quarter mile fractions were :22.67 and :44.64.

It was only the third triple dead heat in Hollywood Park's 75-year history. The other two were for first.

Boat Trip increased his earnings to $253,196 after his fifth win in 14 starts.

Bred in Kentucky by Galleria Bloodstock and Samac, Boat Trip is out of the Seeking the Gold mare Turning Wheel. He is trained by Mike Pender for owners James Hirschmann III and B.J. Wright.

The 7-2 fourth choice, the bay colt paid $9.60, $2.10 and $2.10 while carrying 117 pounds. No Silent, 122-pound highweight Chips All In, and Unbridled's Note all returned $2.10 and $2.10.

"He's going to be sad to see (Betfair Hollywood Park) go, that's for sure,'' said Pender. "He just likes this layout, there's no question about it. Whenever there's a paceless race, there's always three of them dueling up there. Isn't that the way it's supposed to work?

"No, that really helped. I was hoping he'd get a setup because he's kind of one dimensional. I'll be interested in seeing how this horse runs going a mile. He won the Tsunami Slew (June 22, 2012 at Hollywood) going a mile. As he gets older, that's where we'll start looking. He's a big, handsome colt.''