Broadway View, ridden by John McKee, rallied from last on the far turn and then withstood the hard-charging America Alive by a bare nose in the first running of the $171,150 Commonwealth Turf for 3-year-olds at Churchill Downs. The win was the third in 10 starts this year and first in six career races on the grass for Broadway View, who covered 1 1/16 miles on "firm" turf in 1:44.75 and paid $39.60, $17.40 and $11.60. America Alive, with Eddie Martin, Jr. aboard, closed furiously from eighth at the top of the stretch to come up barely short and paid $11.80 and $8.60. Capo, who surged to a narrow lead with a furlong to run under jockey William Troilo, finished 1 1/4 lengths back in third and returned $13.80. Cool Conductor, the even-money favorite ridden by Jose Santos, never threatened and finished ninth. Trained by two-time Kentucky Derby winner Nick Zito and owned by Charlotte Weber's Live Oak Plantation, Broadway View nearly doubled his career earnings with the winner's purse of $106,113 pushing his lifetime total to $223,000. The win was the first stakes score for Broadway View, who improved his overall record to 4-4-0 in 17 starts and he is now 1-2-0 in his six attempts on turf. "He (John McKee) rode the horse perfect," said Zito. "We said just sit back there and take the horse on the outside and just see what happens." "I swung him out – I thought the outside was the better part of the track – and he really came through for me," said McKee. "I knew it was close. I had my head down. I was riding. I really didn't know who won." McKee settled Broadway View into ninth in the backstretch as Alpha Capo, Exploited Storm and Pass Play took turns in leading the pack through the three-quarters of a mile in 1:14.26. McKee swung Broadway View to the outside on the far turn and took aim on the leaders as Capo rallied along the rail to briefly grab the lead. America Alive gamely followed the winner through the stretch, but could not get past Broadway View in the final lunge to the wire. Favored Cool Conductor faded in the stretch to finish ninth. Jockey Jose Santos, who rode Funny Cide to win the 2003 Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs, said the footing was softer than its "firm" rating would indicate and Cool Conductor struggled throughout the race.
"I knew the first part of the race that I was in trouble because he never was in the bridle," said Santos. "I had to push and push and push him the whole way. I got in a good position turning for home. I was about three or four lengths in behind the horses, but he had no kick." The win was McKee's first stakes win of the year at Churchill Downs and the third since the Ohio native arrived at the track in the Fall 2002. (Chart, Equibase)