OZONE PARK, NY – Michael Dubb and David Simon’s Control Group returned to Aqueduct in fine fashion, wiring Saturday’s Grade 3, $200,000 Discovery Stakes.
Off well from the outside post in the six-horse field, Control Group established the lead right away, leading through fractions of :24.05, :48.52, and 1:13.29 while True Timber gave chase. Still not unleashed by the top of the stretch, Control Group had plenty left in the tank to kick away from the field. Under jockey Joel Rosario, Control Group hit the line first by 3 lengths in a final time of 1:52.83 for the 1 1/8-mile main track event.
“I was just trying to stay where I was early and improve my position as it went,” Rosario said. “He handled everything fine. It looked like it was very easy for him.”
Senior Investment outkicked nearly the entire field late, though his move wasn’t enough to catch the leader. He finished 8 1/4 lengths ahead of a two-way photo finish for third, as Bonus Points was a neck past Canyoudiggit at the wire. Spieth and True Timber completed the order of finish.
Since his maiden-breaking effort here in March, the New York-bred Control Group had a successful summer across the NYRA circuit, including wins at Saratoga and Finger Lakes. The Discovery was the first graded stakes win in as many tries for the 3-year-old son of Posse. The Rudy Rodriguez trainee now has a record of 13-5-3-3 with earnings of $321,570.
“I thank Michael Dubb for the opportunity, and everything worked out good,” Rodriguez said. “When I saw :24, I was very comfortable; :48, he was nice and controlled, and Joel looked very, very controlled. At the 3/8 pole, I thought we looked very, very good. The farther they are, the better it is.”
Control Group returned $7.40 to win, $3.90 to place, and $3 to show. Senior Investment brought back $4.10 to place and $3 to show, while Bonus Points paid $3.30 to show.