Heart to Heart and Julien Leparoux take the River City Handicap.

Heart to Heart and Julien Leparoux take the River City Handicap.

Reed Palmer Photography, Churchill Downs

Heart to Heart Wire to Wire in River City

English Channel colt is now three-for-three on the turf at Churchill Downs.

Terry Hamilton's Heart to Heart bounced back from a 10th-place finish in the Shadwell Turf Mile (gr. IT) to win the $100,000 River City Handicap (gr. IIIT) at Churchill Downs Nov. 26.

Video: River City H. (G3T)

Ridden by Julien Leparoux for trainer Brian Lynch, the 4-year-old colt by English Channel  out of the Silver Deputy mare Ask the Question grabbed the early lead in the 1 1/8-mile turf test for 3-year-olds and up and never looked back. Heart to Heart won by two lengths in 1:52.16 on a course rated good. Thatcher Street finished second, three lengths ahead of third-place finisher Perfect Title.

Heart to Heart paid $5.20 to win as the second choice. Favored Messi, winner of the Knickerbocker Stakes (gr. IIIT) in his previous start, never fired and finished fifth.

Heart to Heart was bred in Ontario, Canada, by Red Hawk Ranch. He also won the Oceanport Stakes (gr. IIIT) at Monmouth Park this year. The colt is now three-for-three on the turf at Churchill, having won the Jefferson Cup and Commonwealth Turf (both gr. IIIT) in 2014.