FRANKLIN, KY – Their duel lasted the length of the race, but in the end, owner/trainer Wesley Ward’s Bound for Nowhere outbattled Great Wide Open to take Saturday’s $750,000 Tourist Mile Stakes at Kentucky Downs.
Failing several times before finally loading, Bound for Nowhere broke sharply from post 2 as the 9/5 slight second choice under Julio Garcia. He then sat just off the outside of Great Wide Open for the first 6 furlongs, with the duo inching away near the end of that segment. Hitting the top of the stretch still full of run, Bound for Nowhere took command and crossed over to the rail once clear, then held sway to win by a length in a final time of 1:40.97 for the mile-long turf event.
“He’s always a very relaxed horse,” Ward said. “It’s just when he gets to the gate that’s the issue. He had problems at Ascot, had problems at Keeneland in the spring. He gets there and kind of throws his head up and doesn’t want to load, kind of gets a little hot and anxious. He’s like a pony (otherwise). My daughter could gallop the horse with two hands; he’s a sweet heart. That’s one of the reasons we thought he’d go a mile.”
Behind the top pair, the 6/5 favorite Mr. Misunderstood could only neck out third over Krampus. Farther back, Bandar took fifth ahead of Mr Cub, with Camelot Kitten completing the order of finish.
Bound for Nowhere’s win was his second in a graded stakes event, following the Grade 2 Shakertown, and improved his overall record to 8-5-0-1. The 4-year-old son of The Factor used the $455,700 first-place prize to increase his earnings to $755,607.
“I’ve always wanted to stretch him out, always thought he was a miler,” Ward said. “He’s a big colt, rangy guy, got big airway, has no issues, no problems. It’s just he’s so good at sprinting. When he ran at Ascot and ran so well, this was the race we were pointing for all along. But the closer we got to it, the more I was second-guessing where I would go. But thanks to Julio and the team I have, we all got together and made a decision, and it turned out right.”
Bound for Nowhere returned $5.60 to win, $3.40 to place, and $2.40 to show. Great Wide Open brought back $10 to place and $5.40 to show, while Mr. Misunderstood paid $2.10 to show.