HALLANDALE BEACH, FL – Fresh off of a $25,000 maiden claiming score, Flying Finish Farm’s Dakota’s Dude returned in a major way to edge Timmy M. at the wire and upset Saturday’s $100,000 Proud Man Stakes at Gulfstream Park.
Breaking well from the rail at 23/1 odds under Jose Batista, Dakota’s Dude was soon passed by Rayo My King but stuck close through opening splits of :23.63 and :47.87. Fighting gamely along the inside, Dakota’s Dude pushed his nose ahead midway through the turn and emerged onto the stretch with a length lead over a looming Mozo Bello. Refusing to let that foe past, Dakota’s Dude continued to run strongly and had just enough left in the tank to beat Timmy M. by a head in a final time of 1:30.65 for the 7 1/2-furlong sprint over the firm turf course.
Mozo Bello secured third over the 2/1 favorite Louder Than Bombs, while farther back, Harry’s Ontheloose necked out fifth over Goldenlineof. Completing the order of finish came Organic Jenny, Deep Fire, a spent Rayo My King, and Venezuelan Pegasus. The field’s lone main track only entry, Jackson, was scratched.
Dakota’s Dude’s win was his second straight and improved his record to 5-2-0-1. The 2-year-old son of First Dude increased his bankroll to $102,900.
Dakota’s Dude returned $47.80 to win, $16.60 to place, and $7.60 to show. Timmy M. brought back $5.40 to place and $3.40 to show, while Mozo Bello paid $4 to show.