Sunray Spirit Closes Gamely for Cowdin Win

Sunray Spirit, the odds-on favorite, came from far back to win the co-featured 79th running of the $106,800 Cowdin Stakes (gr. III) for 2-year-olds at Belmont Park Sunday.

The California-based Eoin Harty trainee relaxed after breaking well behind his four rivals, then launched a sustained rally to win by 2 3/4-lengths. Under 119 pounds including Eibar Coa, Sunray Spirit completed the 6 1/2 furlongs in 1:19.16 on a fast track.

"He broke a step slow. After that, I decided to let him relax and I decided to come with just one run," said Coa. "He started picking it up around the far turn. Once we hit the stretch, he really took off and responded."

The victory, his second in four starts, was worth $60,080 to Godolphin Racing, which earlier in the day won the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe (Fr-I) with Sakhee.

"The Nashua (gr. III Oct. 26) is possible," said Harty. "If he could run this race in the Nashua, he would certainly have a shot."

Davids Expectation finished second, 4 1/2 lengths ahead of Harmony Hall. The Call of Duty and Cat's Delight completed the order of finish.

Sunray Spirit returned $3.50, $2.80, and $2.10. Davids Expectation returned $5.90 and $2.10 and completed the $21 exacta. Harmony Hall was worth $2.10 to show. (Chart, Equibase)