The longest shot on the board in a field of six, Flat Out swept by everyone at the eighth-pole and rolled through the stretch to score the $300,000 Suburban Handicap (gr. II) (VIDEO) by 6 1/2 lengths July 2 at Belmont Park.
With Alex Solis riding for the first time, Preston Stables’ Flat Out came from off the pace, made his winning four-wide move on the turn, and quickly separated himself from what had been a tightly-bunched field in the stretch to pull a 13-1 upset. It was the first graded stakes win for the 5-year-old son of Flatter . He is trained by Charles “Scooter” Dickey.
Flat Out was bred in Florida by Nikolaus Bock and is out of the Cresta Rider mare Cresta Lil.
The pace was set by even-money favorite Rodman, who took the field of six—all of them carrying 115 pounds— through splits of :23.95, :47.02, and 1:10.65 under Javier Castellano, while Colizeo stayed right on his heels. Hymn Book was stalking the leaders perfectly in third the whole way.
Unhurried down the backstretch while racing alongside Convocation, Flat Out gained ground on the turn until reaching the pacesetters at the top of the lane. He had a one-length advantage at the eighth-pole and easily drew off in the stretch to complete his unexpected romp.
Hymn Book finished second, a length in front of Rodman. The final time for 1 1/8 miles on the fast dirt was a quick 1:46.64.
"The other morning I went to get on him and I took him around there and he was having so much fun on the track,” Solis said. “I told Mr. Dickey, ‘This horse, he might run big because he really enjoys this track, the long turns and sandy (footing).’ He loves it, and he proved that today.”
Flat Out, an $85,000 Fasig-Tipton Kentucky 2007 July yearling buy consigned by Bluewater Sales, agent, won two of the first three starts of his career, including the 2009 Smarty Jones Stakes at Oaklawn Park. But he visited the winner’s circle just once in his last five tries before the Suburban, that coming in an allowance/optional claimer at Fair Grounds last December. In his other starts this year, the bay horse was runner-up in the Lone Star Park Handicap (gr. III) and sixth in the June 18 Stephen Foster Handicap (gr. I) last out.
Flat Out improved to 4-1-0 from nine starts and earnings of $359,713.
“He’s just a super horse,” Dickey said. “He suffered from a couple of quarter cracks. We gave him time, and waited on him, and today, he’s paid us back. We’ve done everything we can right for him and he’s responding real well and running good.
“I’ve tried to think of several reasons why he didn’t run his normal race (last time). He came out of it fine and he’s better off running than standing in his stall. We’ll talk it over and decide where we want to go. Our goal is to try and run in the Breeders’ Cup.”
“This is only the second time we’ve taken money from (Belmont) back to Texas,” joked owner Jack Preston, whose Victory Gallop denied Real Quiet the Triple Crown in 1998. “We’ve had faith in him the whole time; he’s just had problems, one after the other. He’s a super horse and we found out today how good he is.”
The winner paid $29.20, $11.80, and $4.60. The exacta (5-6) returned $138 and the trifecta (5-6-1) was $287.50.
Convocation was fourth, followed by Colizeo, and Icabad Crane.