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HALLANDALE BEACH, FL – Courtlandt Farms homebred Greatest Honour continued his terror at Gulfstream Park with a powerful victory in Saturday’s $300,000 Fasig-Tipton Fountain of Youth Stakes (G2).
Greatest Honour broke from post 8 under Jose Ortiz as the even-money favorite and settled well off the pace as Drain the Clock shot to the lead from the rail and set opening fractions of :23.66, :47.18, and 1:11.51. Greatest Honour seemed to struggle when asked to pass rivals in the far turn, but once straightened for home, the Shug McGaughey trainee took off.
After quickly gobbling up dirt in mid-stretch, he was brought down to a protective hold while sliding past Drain the Clock near the 1/16 pole. Greatest Honour crossed 1 1/2 lengths clear, completing the 1 1/16-mile fast dirt route in 1:44.02.
“He broke good, a bit slow like he always does, and I put him in the race,” Ortiz said. “I tried to be as close as I could going to the backside and I got a good path behind Prime Factor, but when we hit the turn, I bumped the horse outside of me and lost my hind end a little bit and it was very hard to get him back going. He’s such a big horse with such a big stride. At the 3/8 pole, I’m trying to get him going and I got a space on the inside, but I didn’t want to have to stop him again, so I decided to go wide, and when he hit the clear, boom. He was there for me. Huge run.”
Drain the Clock was 2 lengths clear of a rallying Papetu in third, while Tarantino found himself finishing fourth after tracking from third throughout most of the running.
Jirafales, King’s Ovation, Prime Factor, Fire At Will, Tiz Tact Toe, and Sososubtle completed the order of finish.
The Fountain of Youth is part of the Road to the 2021 Kentucky Derby prep race season. Greatest Honour earned 50 points for the win, with Drain the Clock receiving 20 for second, Papetu 10 for third, and Tarantino 5 for fourth.
Greatest Honour’s win was his third straight, all over this course and distance, and followed his triumph in the Holy Bull Stakes (G3) last time out. The Tapit colt’s overall record now stands at 6-3-1-2 with $351,940 earned.
“The pace wasn’t that fast today, I don’t think, but he was able to overcome it,” said McGaughey, who mentioned that the Florida Derby (G1) is the logical next start. “He’s won twice down here now in stakes doing what he doesn’t want to do, and that’s a mile and 1/16. I’m glad these mile and 1/16 (races) are behind us. We’ll be looking forward to getting him stretched out. Hopefully it’s in the near future, but if not, I know what we’ve got. Hopefully as we keep going longer, he’ll keep improving. The farther, the better for him.”
Greatest Honour returned $4 to win, $2.60 to place, and $2.20 to show. Drain the Clock brought back $3.60 to place and $3.20 to show, while Papetu paid $5.60 to show.
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