Fifteen Rounds Goes Distance in Arlington BC Sprint

(from Arlington report)
Ken Meeker and Carson Springs Farm's Fifteen Rounds emerged victorious after engaging Elusive Jazz in a stretch-long duel to win the $150,000 Arlington Breeders' Cup Sprint by a neck in stakes-record time of 1:08.51 under jockey Chris Emigh.

The Christine Janks-trained son of Fit to Fight was sent off as the race's 7-5 post time favorite following the defection of morning-line favorite Wildcat Heir, who was scratched Saturday morning due to a minor foot abscess.

Breaking from the rail, Emigh kept Fifteen Rounds just off the lead which was held by 8-1 outsider Rodeo's Castle, who maintained a slight advantage from the outside through a half mile in 44.89. Emigh was forced to keep his mount on the inside, which was not the best part of the track.

"I just wanted to get my horse to relax," said Emigh, who has partnered with Fifteen Rounds all year. "I was hoping to get to the outside because I thought the rail was a little dead."

In the stretch, Elusive Jazz rallied along side of Fifteen Rounds, who dug in gamely to prevail.

The Arlington Breeders' Cup Sprint was the fifth win at the meet for Fifteen Rounds and the 12th victory in 20 starts overall for the 5-year-old gelding who added $90,000 to his bankroll, which now stands at $327,033.

"This is the icing on the cake for me this year," Janks said. "Being a homebred, he was basically raised by my husband, Barry, and he did all the work with him before he came to the track."

Elusive Jazz was two lengths better than Level Playingfield, who ran third in the six-horse field and was followed by High Blitz, Rodeo's Castle, and Fire Slam.

Fifteen Rounds paid $4.80, $3.80, and $2.40. Elusive Jazz returned $11.20 and $3.40. Level Playingfield paid $2.60.

(Chart, Equibase)