LEXINGTON, KY – Stronach Stables’ homebred Delta Prince made good on his favoritism Friday, shooting past the entire field in the home stretch to win the Maker’s 46 Mile Stakes (G1) at Keeneland.
Breaking from post 3 under Javier Castellano as the 7/5 top choice, Delta Prince took back early while the defending champion Heart to Heart took command and posted quick early fractions of :24.25, :47.79, and 1:11.98. The Jimmy Jerkens trainee was still at the rear as the field turned for home, then responded immediately to Castellano’s encouragement.
Running wide down the middle of the lane, Delta Prince steadily gobbled up grass and advanced to the front. Taking command just before the 1/16 pole, he surged past his foes before crossing with a 1 1/2-length advantage in a final time of 1:35.97 for the mile-long event over a turf course rated good.
“I tried to take my time and let the race develop,” Castellano said. “He picked it up a little bit at the top of the stretch. I like the way he finished. He finished really, really well.”
Clyde’s Image necked out Qurbaan for second, while Raging Bull and Doctor Mounty were just a head and a neck behind them. After being the closest one to Heart to Heart early, Great Wide Open weakened in the stretch and outfinished only the initial pacesetter to complete the order of finish.
Hembree was scratched.
Delta Prince’s win was his first since the mile-long King Edward Stakes (G2) at Woodbine last July and improved his overall record to 13-5-3-4. The 6-year-old son of Street Cry, who most recently finished third in the inaugural Pegasus World Cup Turf (1) at the end of January, increased his bankroll to $1,173,819.
“He’s grown up and matured into a really nice horse,” Jerkens said. “When (Castellano) swung him out, he looked like he was starting to kick in, but I was really nervous down the backside. It looked like the leaders were really rolling. It looked like he was starting to make some headway. I know this stretch is pretty long. If (Javier) swung him and he kicked in right away, I thought he might have a chance. And he did.”
Delta Prince returned $5.40 to win, $3.20 to place, and $2.60 to show. Clyde’s Image brought back $20.60 to place and $6 to show, while Qurbaan paid $3.20 to show.