Sanagas Takes Off-the-Turf Sycamore
The 5-year-old gelded son of Lomitas won his second stakes this season in North America, scoring by a half-length under Rajiv Maragh. Graham Motion trained the 9-5 second choice.
The Sycamore was rained off the turf course and held on Polytrack. Because of that the American Graded Stakes Committee will review the race to determine if it should retain its original status as a grade III event.
Sanagas completed 1 5/8 miles in 2:39.40, which was a track record. It was originally scheduled for 1 1/2 miles.
Racing fifth in a field of six in the early going, Sanagas was content to follow pacesetter Bim Bam through a :49.25 half-mile. He moved up one spot as Bim Bam continued to lead the way after splits of 1:14.43 and 1:39.23. Eagle Poise and Center Divider tracked the leader, while Odds On was racing along the rail.
Bim Bam still had a short lead over Eagle Poise when they hit the quarter pole, but Sanagas ranged up three-wide and took over coming off the turn. He had a one-length advantage at the eighth pole and opened up a clear lead in the stretch. Brazilian-bred Tahoe Lake made a belated rally under Manny Cruz but fell short of winning his second race at the meet.
Favored Center Divider was another 2 1/4 lengths back in third under Julien Leparoux.
Sanagas, a three-time winner in Germany, won in his second U.S. start Aug. 5 when taking the 1 5/8-mile John’s Call Stakes on the Saratoga turf. He was fourth last out in the Sept. 10 Bowling Green Handicap (gr. IIT) at Belmont.
The winner was bred by Stiftung Gestut Fahrhof and is out of the Marju mare Scota. He improved to 6-1-0 from nine starts and earnings of $132,282.
Sanagas paid $5.50, $4.40, and $2.80. The exacta (6-7) returned $55.20 and the trifecta (6-7-4) was worth $213.80.
Sanagas was one of three horses on Thursday to set a track record. In the fifth race, Hammers Terror lowered the mark for the Beard Course distance of seven furlongs and 184 feet when he won in :1:24.31. The winner of the ninth race, Baby Afleet, lowered the 1 1/16-mile mark to 1:41.61.
A total of five track records have fallen during the first 10 days of Keeneland’s 17-day fall meet. On Oct. 14, 2-year-old filly Applauding lowered the six-furlong Polytrack mark to 1:07.76. On Oct. 19, the 3-year-old Newsdad won at 1 1/4 miles in 2:00.61.
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