It had been almost two years since Get Serious earned his last victory, the 2010 edition of the $100,000 Red Bank Stakes (gr. IIIT) at Monmouth Park. On July 4 he made a definitive return to a familiar winner's circle, going wire-to-wire in this year's running of a race he also captured in 2009 (VIDEO).
The 8-year-old City Zip gelding took the one-mile turf test by a half-length over El Commodore, who kept pace with him neck-and-neck through the early going. Get Serious went a quarter in :23.23, a half in :46.76, and three-quarters in 1:09.09 before prevailing on the inside in a swift time of 1:32.63 under Pablo Fragoso.
"We talked about it before the race, and we knew the horse on the outside (El Commodore) had speed, but not our type of speed," Fragoso said. "My horse broke well and I just tried to settle him down as much as possible. Around the three-eighths pole I asked him for all he had, and I think the other horse was already being ridden at that point. In the stretch, he battled back like he always does."
It was the third start of the season for Get Serious, who started his campaign with a sixth-place finish in the Elkwood Stakes at Monmouth but followed up with a more promising third in the Monmouth Stakes (gr. IIIT) for owners James Dinan and Phantom House Farm.
"We thought he was going to be back to himself this year and he's proved it," said winning trainer John Forbes. "We were concerned when he was getting pushed a little for most of the way, but he's as game as they get. As he's gotten older, he's learned to relax more when there's a horse on his flank."
The gelding's other graded stakes victories at the New Jersey oval include the 2010 Oceanport Stakes (gr. IIIT) and the same race when it was ungraded in 2009, as well as the 2010 edition of the Monmouth.
"We've had him for his whole career and we've had a terrific time with him. We're very proud of him. I hope that he'll be back in other stakes here this year."
Get Serious returned $12.40, $7.20 and $4 while El Commodore returned $11.40 and $5.20. It was another 1 1/4 lengths back to Queen'splatekitten, who paid $2.80. Lubash, the 2-1 favorite in the field of six colts and geldings, checked in fourth, while Yummy With Butter and Monument Hill completed the order of finish. Boots Ahead and Hermosillo scratched.
Get Serious captured the 2010 Red Bank Stakes on Sept. 5 of that year as the 3-5 favorite. He also won the race in 2009 as the even-money choice. The Red Bank was not contested in 2011.
Bred in New York by Morgan's Ford Farm out of the Java Gold mare Java Gal, Get Serious has now banked $1,098,091 for his connections. He sports a lifetime record of 14-2-3 from 37 starts, with 13 of those victories coming at Monmouth.