Commentator Runs Away with Perryville

The Nick Zito-trained Commentator glided to an easy seven-length win in Thursday's $112,600 Perryville Stakes at Keeneland. Eurosilver was second, with Weigelia a half-length back in third.

Commentator completed the seven-furlong distance over a muddy track in 1:25.19, establishing a new stakes record for the six-year-old stakes race.

"He (Commentator) answered a lot of questions today," said Zito. "He's an amazing horse who just keeps getting better. I'm very happy that Eurosilver ran the way he did. He's a quality horse and that means we have a nice horse too."

For Eurosilver, the race was his first start since finishing second, a head behind Wynn Dot Comma, in the March 13 Swale Stakes (gr. III) at Gulfstream Park. The Buckram Oak color bearer was also making his first start for trainer Carl Nafzger since being removed from the Zito barn.

Nafzger was pleased with Eurosilver's performance. "He ran good considering it was his first race off the sickness and his first start in seven months."

Commentator, under jockey Rafael Bejarano, took control of the race immediately out of the gate, grabbing the early lead to take the field of eight, after the scratches of Fire Slam and Mass Media, through early fractions of :22.98, :45.49, and 1:09.66. The pair then moved out two and three wide and drew away easily in the stretch.

The time lowered the stakes record of 1:25.21 held previously by National Saint (1999). The track record is 1:24 3/5.

A New York-bred son Distorted Humor , Commentator, who was a $135,000 yearling purchase by owner Tracy Farmer at the 2002 Fasig-Tipton Kentucky July yearling sale, now has a perfect record of four wins from four starts, with an average winning distance of just over eight lengths. His $69,812 payday increased his career earnings to $147,212.

Commentator paid $5.80, $3.80 and $2.60 as the second
favorite. Eurosilver, winner of Keeneland's Lane's End Breeders' Futurity last fall, returned $4.20 and $3 and Weigelia paid $2.40 to show.

Michael Martinez bred Commentator from the Storm Bird mare Outsource, who has a 2-year-old filly, Call Me Chief (by Chief Seattle) and a yearling Mazel Trick colt.

(Chart, Equibase)