A 6 ½-furlong sprint on Polytrack, the Prevue tested 10 3-year-olds.
Going off as the 3-2 favorite, U.S. Cavalry entered the Prevue having won three times for the Ramseys, who claimed the Officer colt Sept. 27, just prior to breaking his maiden by nine lengths at Turfway.
For most of the way it looked as though Bobby Persad and James Keller’s Mr. Harry was going to take top prize, as the Flatter colt jumped to the early lead from the rail and immediately began to open up. Mr. Harry went the opening quarter in :22.07, just ahead of Mr. Flamboyant.
Under James Lopez, Mr. Harry extended his lead to three lengths after a quick :44.40 half mile and still had a comfortable advantage at the top of the stretch. But with Brian Hernandez Jr., riding, U. S. Cavalry had already begun his four-wide move on the turn, reeling in the leader with every stride.
Mr. Harry still led into deep stretch, but the Michael Maker-trained U.S. Cavalry battled on from his outside, finally taking over in the final yards. Mr. Harry was a clear second, with Cape Hatteras 4 ½ lengths back in third. Hot Chili was fourth.
“He’s very versatile,” Maker said. “At Keeneland he rated kindly off the lead. Last time (at Churchill Downs) he broke sharp like he did today and just kept going. He was farther back today, but I wasn’t really worried about the speed. They were going quick up front but that makes you feel comfortable and I knew (Hernandez Jr.) had a lot of horse.”
Out of the Distorted Humor mare Humorous Wish, U.S. Cavalry was bred in New York by Blackrock Bloodstock. He was originally purchased for $10,000 at the Keeneland January 2006 Horses of All Ages sale. Maker claimed him for the Ramseys for $50,000, one race after he lost his first career start by 19 1/2 lengths Aug. 8 at Saratoga. Since then, U.S. Cavalry has won four of five starts, two of the them in allowance competition. The Prevue was his initial stakes effort.
U.S. Cavalry paid $4.80, $3 and $2.60. The exacta (9-1) returned $17.80, while the trifecta (9-1-2) was worth $105.80.
Last week, Maker indicated that U.S. Cavalry would probably try the Feb. 2 WEBN Stakes next.