ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, IL – Ken and Sarah Ramsey’s homebred Faraway Kitten, available for claim just three races back, launched a strong stretch rally to neck out his first career graded score in Saturday’s $150,000 American Derby (G3) at Arlington.

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Breaking from post 3 under Adam Beschizza at 15/1 odds, Faraway Kitten settled in midpack not far off of Strong Will and Flying Scotsman, who dueled through opening fractions of :23.59, :47.46, and 1:11.46. Shifting out to run two-wide near the 1/4 pole, Faraway Kitten began picking off slowing foes ahead of him and made a bid along the outside of Flying Scotsman.

Taking the lead inside the final furlong, Faraway Kitten was able to hold off The Last Zip and Crafty Daddy at the wire by a neck. The Mike Maker trainee’s winning time for the 1 1/16-mile event over the firm turf course was 1:41.72.

“It was a good, trouble-free trip,” said Beschizza, who also won the Arlington Handicap (G3) one race prior. “This horse has a good engine and feels like he can run for days. I’m just glad all the openings came at the right time and this horse did it in good fashion.”

The Last Zip and Crafty Daddy closed so well together that they were ultimately ruled to be in a dead heat for second. Bundibunan necked out fourth over War Film, with Flying Scotsman a head behind them in sixth. Mick’s StarAnother MysteryRhythmiaConative, and a spent Strong Will completed the order of finish.

Cornstarch and High Crime were listed as trainer scratches.

Strong Will (yellow saddlecloth) leads the field into the first turn during the American Derby (Credit: Coady Photography)

Faraway Kitten’s win was his second straight, having taken the $200,000 Mystic Lake Derby at Canterbury Park on June 22, and improved his overall record to 9-5-0-2. The 3-year-old son of Kitten’s Joy, who RNAed at $35,000 as a yearling and was entered for a $50,000 tag on May 12, has now earned $322,071.

Faraway Kitten returned $32 to win, $8.80 to place, and $6.60 to show. The Last Zip brought back $4 to place and $5.20 to show, while Crafty Daddy paid $3 to place $3.40 to show.