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Grand Arch heads to the winner's circle after the 2014 King Eddie.
The $300,000 King Edward Stakes (G2) features older horses going 1 mile around one turn of the E.P. Taylor Turf Course at Woodbine Racetrack in Toronto. Conditions were excellent with sunny skies, minimal wind, and temperatures in the mid 70's. Excaper was sent off as the 8-5 favorite in the field of 8 off his win in the Connaught Cup (G2) last out. In to challenge him included 7-2 second choice Laugh Track,third in the Connaught Cup after finishing 8th in the Churchill Downs Stakes (G2), and 9-2 third choice Utley, winner of the Dixie (G2) on the Preakness undercard at Pimlico.
Grand Arch (center) runs down Excaper in the stretch.
Excaper was sent to the lead and set fractions of 23.47, 45.78, and 1:08.56 over the firm course while pressed by 12-1 Are You Kidding Me. Entering the lane, Excaper pulled away from the field, opening up a 3 length advantage at the 1/8 pole. However, 11-1 Grand Arch, 6th early, came outside for his rally and got up to win by 1/2 a length in 1:32.49. It was another 1 1/4 lengths back to Utley third.
Pgm Horse Jockey Win Place Show 2 Grand Arch Moran 25.20 8.80 3.90 3 Excaper Da Silva 3.60 2.60 7 Utley Prado 3.20 Winning Time: 1:32.49 $2 Exacta 2-3 86.60 $2 Trifecta 2-3-7 309.10 $1 Superfecta 2-3-7-1 719.55
Left: Grand Arch in the winner's circle. Trainer Brian Lynch said, "Davy has worked a lot of horses for me this year, he showed patience and it's fastastic what he did here. We set the horse up for this grass series, it's like our World Cup, we kicked off with a winner today! We had him in some conditioning races in the U.S. to have him peak out for us in time for the summer grass series up here. It's nice when a plan comes together."
Right: Grand Arch got overheated and acted up on the way to the winner's circle and had to be hosed off before going in. Winning jockey Davy Moran said, "I just waited until the last second to make my move and he showed that he was the best horse in the race. When you're riding good horses for the likes of Brian it's easy."
Left: Second place finisher Excaper returns after the race. The 8-5 favorite set the pace under new jockey Eurico Rosa da Silva, opened up by 3 midstretch but could not hold off the winner. The Ian Black trainee improved his record to 5 wins, 7 seconds, and 1 third in 18 starts, earning $688,699 for owner-breeder Richard Kaster and Frederick Wieting.
Right: Third place finisher Utley in the paddock before the race. The 9-2 third choice raced in 7th early under regular rider Edgar Prado, then passed tired horses late to get third beaten 1 3/4 lengths. The Jonathan Sheppard trainee improved his record to 6 wins, 2 seconds, and 5 thirds in 25 starts, earning $466,598 for owner-breeder Augustin Stable.
Conquest Top Gun was sent to the lead immediately and set easy fractions of 24.92, 49.83, and 1:14.07 while stalked by Genuine Flare. Entering the lane, Genuine Flare tired as Conquest Titan cruised to a 5 3/4 length win over Keen Gizmo in 1:50.96. It was a long 9 1/2 lengths back to Tulio's Brew third, and 1 1/4 more to Genuine Flare fourth.
Full results chart from DRF
Left: Conquest Top Gun in the winner's circle. Winning owner Ernie Semersky said, "We have 1000 percent confidence in Mark (Casse, trainer). We go to the sales with him, but he works like an animal. He doesn't send a buyer. He goes and looks at 1200 horses. We have a big edge, I think, and we'll invest in Mark anytime."
Right: Conquest Top Gun in the post parade. Jockey Eurico Rosa da Silva said, "After the quarter he relaxed beautifully and really picked it up in the stretch. If another horse had come faster, he had a little more. He's a trier with a big heart."
Left: Second place finisher Keen Gizmo returns after the race. The 12-1 longest shot raced third early under jockey Luis Contreras then held on to finish second beaten 5 3/4 lengths. The Josie Carroll trainee improved his record to 1 win, 2 seconds, and 1 third in 7 starts, earning $74,507 for owner Ivan Dalos.
Right: Third place finisher Tulio's Brew at the finish. The 7-1 third choice was last early under jockey Patrick Husbands then passed the tiring Genuine Flare to get third beaten 15 1/4 lengths. The Bob Tiller trainee improved his record to 2 wins, 1 second, and 1 third in 5 starts, earning $93,327 for owner-breeder Frank DiGiulio Jr.
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