Making his first start as a 6-year-old, Robert Cole Jr.’s Rapid Redux went wire-to-wire in a $5,000 starter allowance race, winning by three-quarters of a length. The final time for the mile on a fast main track was 1:38.24. J. D. Acosta rode the chestnut gelding for trainer David Wells. He paid $2.80 to win as the favorite in a field of five.
Rapid Redux, who will be honored with a special Eclipse Award in California later this month, won 19 races in 2011 to tie Citation’s modern-day United States record for victories in a single season. He also broke the record for consecutive modern-day U.S. wins, surpassing Pepper’s Pride and Zenyatta, who each won 19 straight.
Claimed for $6,250 in October 2010, the son of Pleasantly Perfect improved to 28-1-1 from 42 lifetime starts.
Breaking from post 3, Rapid Redux outhustled Awesome Rhythm in the early stages to grab a one-length lead through an opening quarter-mile of :24.14. He maintained that advantage after a half-mile in :47.57 and turned for home with a two-length lead.
As he did in their Dec. 13 meeting at Laurel, Awesome Rhythm gamely pursued the leader at the top of the lane and was inching closer as the final furlong continued. But Rapid Redux found more once again and held off his rival for yet another victory.
Gold Casing finished another four lengths back in third.
“He was getting out a little bit down the lane with me,” said Acosta. “I was really concerned because I had that other horse right next to me the whole time. I knew he was the horse to watch. When we turned for home he really started running the way he always does. He picked up the bridle and he started running really strong. “
Wells revealed Jan. 3 that Rapid Redux “grabbed a quarter” in his right front foot a few days earlier during training and had a minor cut on his right foot. He was questionable to run on the morning of the race.
“It was 30 percent to run yesterday," Wells said. "We jog him this morning for the vet and put the hoof testers on and he thought we were going to be okay.”
Rapid Redux has won races at seven different tracks at distances from five furlongs to 1 1/8 miles, using seven riders during the streak.
“The math is unbelievable when you think about it,” said Cole. “It is tough to win this many in a row. The durability is his greatest trait. He’ll keep running as long as he’s healthy.”
Rapid Redux, who was bred in Kentucky by Fortress Pacific Equine and is out of the Storm Cat mare Thiscatsforcaryl, improved to 6-for-6 lifetime at Laurel.