SARATOGA SPRINGS, NY – Jim and Susan Hill’s Daddy Is A Legend rewarded the many supporters that mader her the 8-5 favorite by exploding in mid-stretch past a game Altea to win Friday’s Grade 3, $150,000 Lake George Stakes at Saratoga.
Breaking from post 3 under Manny Franco, Daddy Is A Legend tucked in near the rear while Punked led through splits of :23.92 and :47.71 before Goodthingstaketime momentarily took command exiting the back stretch. Beginning to split horses in the far turn, Daddy Is A Legend waited patiently behind Goodthingstaketime until exiting the turn, then cut in front of a fading Punked and launched a rally along the rail. Even with Altea mounting a strong five-wide run along the outside, Daddy Is A Legend would not be kept from her first win of the year. Surging late in the final yards, George Weaver trainee cleared away to win by a handful of lengths in a final time of 1:40.42 for the 1 1/16-mile turf event.
“Today, we got a good draw, so the main thing was to break good and get my position and wait,” Franco said. “It worked out good. The main thing, George told me to wait. He didn’t want me to move too early, so I was trying to follow somebody that was going to keep going, and that’s what I did. I waited as long as I could and the inside opened, so I just sent my filly, and she was there for me.”
Goodthingstaketime couldn’t keep up with the leaders late but was still strong enough to secure third by 3/4 of a length over Andina Del Sur. Behind them, Heavenly Love edged Going Out for fifth, while a spent Punked completed the order of finish. Nootka Sound was scratched.
Daddy Is A Legend’s victory was her first in 2018 after failing to do so in the Grade 2 Appalachian Stakes, the Grade 3 Edgewood Stakes, and the Grade 3 Wonder Again Stakes. The 3-year-old daughter of Scat Daddy’s most recent score came in last fall’s Grade 3 Jimmy Durante Stakes and carries an overall record of 8-3-1-1 with a lifetime bankroll of $229,410.
“More pace developed than I thought there was going to be, which sometimes happens when there’s no pace in the race,” Weaver said. “She was in a good spot, she got some cover and wasn’t too far off the pace, and she was ready to pounce whenever he wanted her to.”
Daddy Is A Legend returned $5.30 to win, $3.10 to place, and $2.40 to show. Altea brought back $4.70 to place and $3.30 to show, while Goodthingstaketime paid $3.20 to show.