Hot Springs, Ark. (Saturday, Jan. 30, 2016) – Lewis Matthews, Jr.’s Ivan Fallunovalot, sent off as the even-money favorite, drew off from his competition late to win Saturday’s $100,000 King Cotton Stakes for the second year in a row. Alsvid, who eventually turned the tables on Ivan Fallunovalot last year in the Count Fleet Sprint Handicap (G3), finished second in the King Cotton for the fourth straight year.
With regular rider Calvin Borel in the irons, Ivan Fallunovalot settled into third as Lewys Vaporizer led through an opening quarter in :22. Alvsid, normally a closer, was in the mix from the start and took control before a half-mile in :45. The winner came five wide into the stretch, took the lead and drew off to win by two lengths in a final time of 1:09 1/5 over a fast track.
W.B. Smudge had a troubled trip from the start, but held on for third, while withstanding a claim of foul lodged against him and Alsvid by Ricardo Santana Jr., the rider of the fifth-place finisher Bayerd.
“He ran, he showed up,” said jockey Calvin Borel. “This horse is a super nice horse and honest. I didn’t know about the objection because we were clear when we came over. This horse ran a powerful race. He was much the best horse and he won.”
Ivan Fallunovalot, a 6-year-old Valid Expectations gelding, improved his Oaklawn record to five wins from seven starts and his overall record to 12 wins from 21 career starts. He has now earned $536,910. He returned $4, $3 and $2.60.
Live racing resumes Sunday at Oaklawn with a 1:30 p.m. first post.