RACER PULLS UPSET IN NODOUBLE BREEDERS’ STAKES
HOT SPRINGS, AR (Saturday, Feb. 25, 2017) – Val Yagos’ Racer pulled the upset over defending champion and 3-5 favorite Weast Hill using a front-running style in Saturday’s $100,000 Nodouble Breeders’ Stakes. After two straight third-place finishes behind the heavy favorite earlier this season, Racer was able to turn the tables and returned a generous payout of $17.20, $5 and $2.80 as the 7-1 third choice in the field.
Breaking from post position one under jockey Jon Court, Racer was the quickest away from the gate and never looked back. He took the field through early fractions of :21 1/5 and :45 2/5 for the first half mile and still had plenty left in reserve to hold off Weast Hill by lengths 1 ¼ lengths. He completed the six furlongs in 1:10 1/5 over a fast track.
“We didn't know if he’d make the lead, but we wanted to go out there and try to soften up Weast Hill,” winning trainer Tim Martin said. “This horse has really been training good. He broke like he’s been training in the mornings. He'll be galloping and just jump. He left running today.”
Rock City Roadhog finished third. He was followed by Suspect a Storm, Chantmeupbaby, Maize Road and Explosive Lake.
Racer, a 4-year-old Jonesboro gelding bred by Robert Yagos, improved his record to 3-1-3 from 13 starts and has now earned $161,778.
Live racing resumes Sunday with a 1:30 p.m. first post.
Winning trainer Tim Martin, Racer: “We didn't know if he’d make the lead, but we wanted to go out there and try to soften up Weast Hill,” winning trainer Tim Martin said. “This horse has really been training good. He broke like he’s been training in the mornings. He'll be galloping and just jump. He left running today.”
Winning jockey Jon Court, Racer: “We left there in front and stayed there. That was the game plan, this time I didn’t want to get to creative or put too much thought into it. I was just going to ride it the way it came up. The horse has been sharp I wasn’t going to take anything away from him and we ended up out breaking everybody and got to the lead. We just persevered from there. I am so happy for the Yagos’s and for Tim (Martin) for sticking with me. Now we have the Nodouble under our belt.”
Jockey Joe Rocco Jr., 2nd place finisher Weast Hill: “He ran really well. He stumbled a little leaving the gate that cost him a little, but that one horse (Racer) went out there and we sat off of him. He (Weast Hill) ran his eyeballs off trying to get to him, but the winner had too much.”