The 8-year-old gelding sprinted quickly to the front and led all the way in the race for New York breds. A winner of over $1.9 million, Commentator is unbeaten in six races against state breds.
This was the easiest spot the 1-5 favorite faced in two years, and he took full advantage. John Velazquez was aboard for trainer Nick Zito as Commentator ran the one mile on the muddy track in 1:35.65. Overall, he improved to 14-for-23, with many of those victories coming in much tougher graded stakes.
Commentator paid $2.40 and $2.10. Stud Muffin returned $2.40. Joe Corrigan was third. There was no show wagering on the five-horse race.
Zito said he was using the race as a prep for the Whitney Handicap (gr. I) at Saratoga on Aug. 8. Commentator will be trying to win the Whitney for the third time.
“Now, it’s seven and half, eight weeks to the Whitney," Zito said. "Let me see how he does because I might even squeeze something in between, maybe a month before. If not, we’ll wait the eight weeks.
“At Charles Town (Classic, April 18, fourth-place finish), he hadn’t run in five or six months. And those turns, I think he thought the race was over. He got tired going around that bull ring.”