Gold Storm survived a three-horse speed battle to win the $147,000 Arlington Breeders' Cup Sprint on Saturday at Arlington Park. Larry Taylor rode the son of Seeking the Gold who covered the six furlongs in a stakes record 1:08.65 over a fast racetrack. Keith McKinney and Jack Sweesy own the 4-year-old colt.Gold Storm broke alertly from the gate and was immediately engaged by longshot Avid Skier and favorite Champali as the trio sped through fractions of :22.62 for the quarter and :45.72 for a half-mile. Gold Storm took a clear advantage in the stretch and had a two-length lead with an eighth of a mile to run, getting the five panels in :57.02. He held off a late charge from 11-1 outsider Super Fuse to prevail by three-quarters of a length. "I knew my horse had a lot of speed and if he stood up and broke well, they were going to have to chase him for a way," said Taylor, who had a travel snafu and barely made the race in time. The Arlington Breeders' Cup Sprint was the third straight victory for the C. W. "Bubba" Cascio trainee, who boosted his overall record to seven wins from 11 starts. The $90,000 earned for the Sprint pushed his bankroll to $206,750. "We'll play it by ear and try to get another good race into him and try to get into the Breeders' Cup (Sprint) if at all possible," Cascio said. Super Fuse was a clear second in the five-horse field, 5 ¼ lengths to the good of 3-5 favorite Champali, who battled the pace for a half before giving way late. "I wanted to take back but the horse on the outside (Avid Skier) put on a lot of pressure and I couldn't take back," said Champali's rider, Rene Douglas. "My horse wouldn't relax and rate for me. At that point I figured I'd better go on rather than fight him. That wasn't my plan but that's racing."
Gold Storm paid $20, $10.40 and $2.10. Super Fuse returned $10 and $2.10. Champali paid $2.10. Avid Skier and Coach Jimi Lee completed the order of finish. (Chart, Equibase)