SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – Returning from his historic win in the Grade 1 Metropolitan Handicap, Godolphin Racing’s Frosted did not disappoint as the 1-2 favorite with an equally remarkable victory in Saturday’s Grade 1, $1.25 million Whitney at Saratoga Race Course.
Frosted, with jockey Joel Rosario aboard, broke with determination and seized early control of the six-horse field. With Upstart positioned along the rail and Noble Bird an ominous presence to his outside, Frosted swept through an opening quarter-mile in 23.11 seconds and a half in 46.42.
The 4-year-old son of Tapit extended his lead as he turned for home under a motionless Rosario. As the field was put to a drive, Frosted held clear and, with a quick shake of the reins from Rosario, strode home a two-length winner over a late-closing Comfort.
Frosted returned $3 for a $2 win wager and completed the 1 1/8-mile route in 1:47.77
“I was cruising the whole way, he was very relaxed and I just tried to save something for the end,” said Rosario. “Sometimes he’s a little difficult and you have to let him do what he wants to do, but when I turned for home I knew he had something left because I know the way he likes to run. He pulled me [to the lead], so I didn’t want to take him back because he was happy there. He was comfortable [despite the fast fractions] after I cleared the horses inside of me on the first turn, he was really happy and enjoying it.”
A “Win and You’re In” qualifier for the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Classic, the 89th running of the Whitney awards Frosted an all-fees-paid berth into the $6 million race on November 5 at Santa Anita.
Frosted already earned entrance into the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile for his astounding 14 ¼-length win in the Met Mile, believed to be the largest margin of victory in the race’s history.
Frosted improves his record to 6-6-1 from 16 career starts and earnings of more than $3.8 million for trainer Kiaran McLaughlin, who trained Whitney winner Invasor to Champion Older Horse and Horse of the Year honors in 2006.
“He is a very nice horse and a versatile horse from a mile to a mile and a half and we are fortunate and happy to have him in the barn,” said McLaughlin.
“He is right up at the top [horses I’ve trained],” he continued. “Invasor was the best, I’ll always say, but he is creeping up now and if he can go on and win the Breeders’ Cup or World Cup he’ll [Frosted] be right there with him or pass him.”
Upstart checked in third, a half-length behind Comfort, followed by Effinex, Noble Bird and El Kabeir to complete the order of finish.