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Fast Boat Docks In Troy Winner’s Circle
Credit: NYRA / Elsa Lorieul

Fast Boat Docks In Troy Winner’s Circle

SARATOGA SPRINGS, NY – Brad Grady’s Fast Boat motored in deep stretch to overtake pacesetter Carotari from the outside, getting up in the final jumps for a 1/2-length score in Friday’s $200,000 Troy (G3) presented by Horse Racing Ireland for 4-year-olds and up sprinting 5 1/2 furlongs on Saratoga Race Course’s Mellon turf.

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Fast Boat won for the third time in 4 starts, utilizing a patient trip from jockey Tyler Gaffalione from the inside post as Carotari led the nine-horse field through the opening 1/4-mile in 21.74 seconds and the 1/2 in 44.15 over firm going under Hall of Famer Javier Castellano.

Out of the turn, Gaffalione kept Fast Boat wide, providing the 6-year-old son of City Zip plenty of racing room in front of him. Gaffalione’s charge capitalized on the daylight and picked off multiple rivals one by one until setting his sights on Carotari.

In the final 1/16, Gaffalione alternated from right-handed to left-handed encouragement, and Fast Boat collared his rival in the shadow of the wire, completing the course in 1:01.24 for trainer Joe Sharp.

“During the stretch run, I was jumping off the ground,” Sharp said. “I got a little taller inside the 1/8 pole. You could tell by his momentum that he was going to get there, but the horse on the lead, Javier’s horse (Carotari), dug in when he got to him. When he fires his big ones, it’s always fun to watch from the 1/4-pole home. We figured he’d like this turf course here, and he sure did.”

Fast Boat registered his third stakes win of the campaign, adding to scores in the Pulse Power Turf Sprint in January at Sam Houston and the Turf Sprint (G2) in April at Churchill Downs, before running sixth last out in the Jackpocket Jaipur (G1) on Belmont Stakes Day June 5.

“He was training very forwardly into the race,” Sharp said. “He’s a horse we’ve gotten to know really well and we know all his ‘isms.’ When he’s doing well and when he’s going to run a big race and everything pointed to his effort today. The weather cooperated today. He prefers a firm turf course, and for the Jaipur, he lost his opportunity at the Grade 1 with the give in the ground. But I’m not taking anything away from today. We’re super proud to be here and honored. Winning at Saratoga is big, let alone winning a graded stake.”

Off at 10/1, Fast Boat returned $23.80 on a $2 win wager. He improved his career earnings to $659,849.

Gaffalione won the Troy for a third consecutive year for three different trainers, starting with Leinster and Rusty Arnold in 2019 and winning aboard the Wayne Potts-conditioned American Sailor last year.

“I didn’t expect to be that close, but he was travelling pretty easy and I just let him do his thing,” Gaffalione said. “I didn’t want to get in his way, and when I tipped him out, he really finished his job. Mr. Sharp has done a great job with him. You can tell when he’s in that 5 1/2-3/4 range, he really runs his race.”

Carotari, trained by Brian Lynch, went off at 23/1 but outkicked Gear Jockey by 1 length for second, marking the third time in 4 starts the Artie Schiller gelding has hit the board in his 5-year-old year.

“He had been training so well going into this race,” Castellano said. “You could see on paper how good he was working. I really like how he did it today. I was really satisfied with his race.”

Imprimis, Bound for Nowhere, Front Run the Fed, Lazuli, Chewing Gum, and Classy John completed the order of finish.

Backtohisroots, Chateau, and Casa Creed scratched.

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