Silver Tree wins the Oceanport (gr. IIIT) under Kent Desormeaux.

Silver Tree wins the Oceanport (gr. IIIT) under Kent Desormeaux.

Bill Denver/Equi-Photo

Silver Tree Wins Thrilling Oceanport

Peter Vegso’s 8-year-old homebred Silver Tree added another chapter to his remarkable career Aug. 3 at Monmouth Park when he split horses in deep stretch and prevailed by a neck over Giant Wrecker in the $150,000 Oceanport Stakes (gr. IIIT) (VIDEO).

Ridden superbly by Kent Desormeaux, Silver Tree saved ground while running from off the pace, advanced along the turn and forced his way between Giant Wrecker and Hotstufanthensome at the sixteenth-pole. It wasn’t until the final few strides that he put a nose in front of Giant Wrecker. The final time on Monmouth’s ‘firm’ turf course was 1:40.05 for 1 1/16 miles.

Giant Wrecker, who led the entire way until the final strides, settled for second under Jose Lezcano. Hotstufanthensome was a nose back in third with Elvis Trujillo aboard.

Trained by Bill Mott, Silver Tree earned the sixth graded stakes victory of his stellar career, and won for the 14th time in 40 starts. He has now earned $1,728,009.

A son of Hennessy--Blue Begum, by With Approval, Silver Tree entered the Oceanport off a runner-up performance in the July 13 Caesar Rodney Stakes at Delaware Park. Prior to that, he won the Fort Marcy Handicap (gr. IIIT) April 27 at Aqueduct.

Giant Wrecker seemd to be in prime position to steal the Oceanport, as he made the lead and posted fractions of :24.11, :47.68 and 1:10.71 under Lezcano. Baron Von Tap, Buffalo Man and Hotstufandthensome were close up through the backstretch.

Giant Wrecker led by a length over Hotstufanthensome at the top of the lane and those two dueled until Silver Tree joined them in mid-stretch.

Going off as the favorite in a field of nine older horses, Florida-bred Silver Tree paid $5.60, $3.40 and $2.60. The exacta (4-5) returned $52.20, with the $1 trifecta (4-5-2) netting $168.70.

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