Brave Tin Soldier Fires in Cliff Hanger

Son of Storm Cat comes from last to first over "yielding" turf at Meadowlands.

Brave Tin Soldier marched from last place to win the Oct. 3 Cliff Hanger Stakes (gr. IIIT) at Meadowlands. Under Carlos Marquez Jr., the 5-year-old son of Storm Cat topped Pleasant Strike by a nose on the wire, covering the 1 1/16 miles of “yielding” turf in 1:45.52.

Last of six through the first six furlongs, Brave Tin Solder started to pick up the tempo on the turn for home and came into the stretch three wide. He just got up to catch Pleasant Strike, who also had come from off the pace but had made his move earlier. It was 2 1/4 lengths back to third-place finisher Kiss the Kid.

Get Serious, the 9-5 favorite, finished fifth after setting the early pace. He took the field through splits of :24.44, :48.48, and 1:12.01 before giving way.

Brave Tin Solder paid $11.60, $5.60, and $3.20. Pleasant Strike returned $3.20 and $2.60 and Kiss the Kid paid $2.60. The 2-5 exacta returned $46.

Brave Tin Soldier, who is out of the Mr. Prospector mare Bless, is owned by trainer Kiaran McLaughlin. The horse was bred in Kentucky by ClassicStar. Bless is out of Angel Fever, and is thus a full sister to 2000 Kentucky Derby (gr. I) winner and 1998 Keeneland July yearling sale topper ($4 million) Fusaichi Pegasus .

Brave Tin Solder has raced in England, France, Ireland, the United Arab Emirates, and the U.S. The $125,000 Cliff Hanger was his sixth start in North America. He came into the race off a sixth-place finish, beaten only two lengths, in the Sept. 6 Red Bank Stakes (gr. IIIT) at Monmouth Park. In all, he has four wins from 25 starts and has earned $324,158.

As a 2-year-old while racing for Michael Tabor and being trained by Aidan O’Brien, the Cliff Hanger winner won the $53,020 Laing O’Rourke Blenheim Stakes at the Curragh in Ireland at six furlongs.