HALLANDALE BEACH, FL – A fast pace setup and a perfect ride meant that Diamond Oops‘ victory was no accident in Saturday’s $100,000 Mr. Prospector Stakes (G3) at Gulfstream Park.
Breaking from post 6 under Julien Leparoux as the 7/2 second choice, Diamond Oops took back early and watched as a speed duel commenced up front. The even-money favorite Imperial Hint closely chased X Y Jet through rapid opening fractions of :21.92 and :43.85.
Midway through the far turn, the fast pace took its toll on X Y Jet, who began steadily retreating toward the rear and putting Imperial Hint on the lead. The bettors’ choice was not able to enjoy his newfound position for very long, however, because Diamond Oops was flying furiously to sidle along his outside.
Put to a task as he straightened for home, Diamond Oops poked his nose in front at the 1/8 pole and began gradually inching ahead. A surging rally from Lasting Legacy was too little, too late, as Diamond Oops crossed a length in front at the wire. The Patrick Biancone trainee completed the 7-furlong sprint over the fast main track in a final time of 1:21.36.
“We obviously knew there was going to be a lot of speed in there,” Leparoux said. “He broke sharp and settled really nice for me. At the 3/8 pole, I started to make my move. I was coming behind them loaded. I came out and he made a big run.”
Lasting Legacy necked out Imperial Hint for second at 5/1 odds, creating a $24.20 exacta payout. Zenden, Home Base, and an empty X Y Jet completed the order of finish.
Diamond Oops’ win was his second of the season, having taken the Smile Sprint Stakes (G3) here on June 29, to improve his record to 12-5-2-1 overall. The 4-year-old gelded son of Lookin At Lucky has now earned $646,490 for co-owners Diamond 100 Racing Club, Amy Dunne, D P Racing, and Biancone.
“He’s had a good year of racing and training,” Biancone said of his pupil who only raced once in 2018. “He’s still a young horse for his age because he missed a year. We’re very happy with him today. Even though the pace was fast, he was cruising behind them. Julien rode him perfect.”
Diamond Oops returned $9 to win, $4.20 to place, and $2.60 to show. Lasting Legacy brought back $5.40 to place and $2.80 to show, while Imperial Hint paid $2.10 to show.