G Three Stable's Smoked Em set unpressured fractions en route to a two-length win over Magic Weisner in Saturday's $107,250 Federico Tesio Stakes at Pimlico. Smoked Em's victory snapped 9-10 favorite Magic Weisner's five-race winning streak.
Under Richard Migliore, Smoked Em set moderate fractions of :48.60 and 1:13.05 before completing the 1 1/8 miles in 1:50.03 on a fast track. Magic Weisner finished a half-length clear of third-place Heir D' Twine. The Sewickley Kid, Derby Drive, and Radio One completed the order of finish.
"He got to the head of the lane in good shape," said Migliore. "He's a real quality colt so I knew when he got to go along, prick his ears and relax that he was going to have a big finish. He made my job really easy. It seemed pretty obvious the best spot was to be in front and on the rail."
Smoked Em is a 3-year-old son of Smoke Glacken out of the Irish River mare Blarneystone Lass. The Todd Pletcher-trained colt earned $60,000 for the win, his third in six starts. After defeating My Man Ryan and Heir D' Twine in an Aqueduct allowance race in January, Smoked Em finished second to Saratoga Blues while making his stakes debut in the Whirlaway Stakes. He returned less than a month later to finish third behind Heir D' Twine and Rum Splasher in another allowance race. The Tesio was his first start since March 3.
Smoked Em's owner indicated that he was leaving the decision on whether to enter the colt in the Preakness to Pletcher and Migliore.
Nancy Albert, who trains Magic Weisner, said, "We ran our race, but we'll know better in the Preakness to lay a little closer."
John T. L. Jones Jr. and Dwight Sutherland bred Smoked Em in Kentucky. Smoked Em sold for $105,000 at Keeneland in 1999 and for $170,000 at the 2000 Keeneland September yearling sale.
Sent off as the second choice in the wagering, Smoked Em paid $8.40, $2.60, and $2.20. Magic Weisner returned $2.40 and $2.20. Heir D' Twine paid $3 to show. The winning exacta combination paid $18.20.
Earlier on the card, Robert E. Meyerhoff's Include raced in sixth through the early going, then unleashed a powerful run to win the $100,000 Jennings Handicap by nine lengths over Lightning Paces. Include completed his 1 1/8 miles in 1:49.97 under Mario Pino.
"He just overpowered this field," said Pino. "Down the backside I moved him outside a little bit and we moved by them. I didn't want to move that soon but he was going so easily I had to let him go on. Mr. (Buddy) Delp (trainer) did a great job getting him ready. He was coming to the eighth pole looking around. He was not paying attention. I've been getting to know him really well in the morning. He's all class. He's one of the best horses I've ever ridden."
"We're thinking about the Breeders' Cup big time," Delp admitted. (Chart, Equibase