Ballingarry split horses at the top of the stretch and held off a late rally from Dr. Brendler to win the $219,200 Stars and Stripes Breeders' Cup Turf (gr. IIIT)by a half length Saturday at Arlington Park. The Laura de Seroux trainee covered the 1 1/2 mile over "good" going in 2:28.30. Rene Douglas rode the Sadler's Wells colt who paid $3.20, $2.40 and $2.20 as the 3-5 betting favorite. For Douglas it was his third straight victory in Arlington's Fourth of July holiday weekend headliner. He previously won the race aboard Falcon Flight in 2001 and astride Cetewayo last year. The Stars and Stripes was the first win for Ballingarry since being purchased last fall by the partnership of Port Trust, Naify and San Gabriel Investments shortly after he took the Canadian International (gr. IT) at Woodbine. The $131,520 winner's share for the Stars and Stripes boosted his earnings past to $1,528,795. His record stands at five wins, one second and four thirds from 14 trips to the post. "Last year when we got him, he had run in the Canadian International and then he had to go back to France to do his test for entry into the United States," de Seroux explained. "By the time of the Breeders' Cup, he was a very jet lagged horse. We took our time with him this winter and planned to bring him back this way. I knew this was a really good spot for this horse and Mr. (Sidney) Port would enjoy it in his hometown." Ballingarry saved ground while racing mid-pack behind a respectable pace of :24.78, :49.88, 1:15.26, 1:39.54 and 2:04.16 set by 22-1 Extra Check. He moved up on the third turn, took the lead at the head of the lane and held sway at the wire. "Our plan was to get (to the front) off the break and go on from there and let him be himself," said Douglas. "It didn't work that way because he didn't break that sharp. I had to go to Plan B and stay on the rail. He has a long stride. I just waited for the opportunity to get through and he exploded." Dr. Brendler, far back early, followed Ballingarry through the hole at the top of the stretch but was unable to overtake the winner. Second choice in the wagering, Dr. Brendler paid $2.80 and $2.40.
"I'm thrilled with his race," said Dr. Brendler's trainer H. Graham Motion. "It shows he can compete with these kind of horses. Ballingarry ran a very good race to beat us." Jack's Own Time was third in the nine-horse field and paid $3.80. Extra Check, Williams News, Private Son, Ivan Jay Perry, Scooter Roach and North of Six completed the order of finish. (Chart, Equibase)