Given a confident ride by Corey Nakatani, In Summation sat a stalking trip, edging past pacesetter Bordonaro approaching the sixteenth pole in the six-furlong Polytrack test. He then dug deep to hold off the relentless close of Greg's Gold, ridden by Victor Espinoza. Greg's Gold won the Crosby in 2005.
So close was the finish that Nakatani said he asked Espinoza which horse he thought had won as they galloped out together on their courageous charges.
"That was some race," Nakatani said. "I’ll tell you, anytime I ride for a guy (Clement) who I think is going to go to the Hall of Fame, I ride with confidence. I knew this horse would come ready. And he was.
"I saw Greg’s Gold coming up outside me, and I knew he’d be there, too. David Hofmans won this race with him before, and you knew he’d be coming again. But my horse was game, and he held him off.”
“He tried all the way," Espinoza said of the unlucky runner-up. "He ran really hard. I thought I was going to go by, but (In Summation) was tough, too.”
In Summation, a 4-year-old colt by Put It Back--Fiesta Baby (Dayjur), made his grade I debut as well as his first start on a synthetic track, completing the six furlongs in 1:11. The dark bay, owned by Thomas Moore's Waterford Stable, had raced exclusively on turf with moderate success since Clement took over training duties from Frank Gomez last fall. In Summation had two graded stakes places since moving to grass six starts ago and was coming off a one-length win in the Sneakbox at five furlongs on the Monmouth Park sod June 24.
Bordonaro, the 120-pound highweight who was runner-up to Pure as Gold in the ’06 renewal of the Crosby, was third under Richard Migliore, 1 1/2 lengths behind Greg’s Gold and 2 1/2 lengths in front of Battle Won, ridden by Michael Baze. Bordonaro set lively Polytrack fractions of :22 3/5 and :45 3/5.
“He handled the track well to start, and he fought real hard," Migliore said of the pacesetter. "Even to the sixteenth pole, I thought he might hold them off. But then the track caught up to him. This track just isn’t kind to frontrunners, and that’s his style. There’s nothing you can do about it. But I was really proud of his effort today.”
The 3-year-old Bob Baffert trainee E Z Warrior, one of three sent off at 7-2, was the lukewarm choice in a wide open renewal of the Crosby. He stumbled at the break and finished eighth in the nine-horse line-up, his first defeat in four career starts. E Z Warrior, who had not raced since January, was facing older horses for the first time.
“He went to his nose out of the gate, and it was over," jockey David Flores said. "He never got a chance to run.”
In Summation, a Florida-bred horse whose biggest previous success had come in the Florida Stallion Series as a 2-year-old, posted the fastest six furlongs over Del Mar's new Polytrack surface this summer.
It was the second graded stakes win at Del Mar for Clement, who won the 2002 Palomar Handicap (gr. IIT) with Voodoo Dancer.
“This is a great horse to be around," said assistant Jane Turner, who saddled In Summation. "He certainly loves this track. There was so much speed in the race that it set up for him.”
The horse arrived at Del Mar on Wednesday evening and was housed in the barn of trainer Ben Cecil.
Sent off as the sixth choice, the $130,000 Ocala juvenile returned $18.40, $9, and $6. Runner-up Greg’s Gold, patiently returned to the Crosby by trainer Hofmans following a serious tendon injury suffered shortly after winning the race two years ago, returned $5.80 and $3.80. Bordonaro was $4 to show as the 120-pound high weight.
Battle Won was followed by Gotaghostofachance, Declan's Moon, Northern Soldier, E Z Warrior, and Corazondelcampeon.
The triumph was In Summation’s seventh in 17 lifetime races. First money of $180,000 increased his earnings to $670,226. His assigned weight was 114 pounds, but he actually carried 119 since Nakatani was five pounds over.
The day’s attendance was 16,998.