OKLAHOMA CITY, OK – Triple B Farms’ Greyvitos continued his fast-rising trend as a juvenile to watch after winning Sunday’s $400,000 Remington Springboard Mile Stakes.
Off swiftly from the oustide post under Victor Espinoza, Greyvitos settled just off the pace set by Major Brown through splits of :23.51 and :47.16. Just past the 1/2-mile marker, Espinoza began to loosen his tight hold and Greyvitos went three-wide around Major Brown and Redatory with relative ease. Hitting the top of the stretch in full stride, Espinoza gave Greyvitos the green light, which was all the Adam Kitchingman-trained colt needed. Greyvitos hit the line first by 2 1/4 lengths in a final time of 1:37.14, a new stakes record that beat the time set by Bayerd in 2014 (1:37.26).
“We had the outside and I was just checking everyone to see what they were going to do into the first turn,” Espinoza said. “I just didn’t want to hit the first turn too wide. If I could get to the turn maybe four or five (wide), then I’m in good shape. I decided to track the horse on the lead and I was pretty much cruising along all the way around. I wanted to wait a little bit longer, but it seemed like the other horses didn’t really want it in front of me, so I took a shot. I felt like I had the best horse in the race, and he just ran and opened it up.”
Combatant couldn’t catch Greyvitos in the stretch but finished well ahead of the rest of the field. It was 5 1/4 lengths back to Kingsville, then another 5 1/4 back to Night Strike, who at one point was over 25 lengths behind on the back stretch. Major Brown took fifth over Believe in Royalty, while Bode’s Maker, Flip the Coin Jan, Brangelina, Redatory, Soul P Say, and Flat Lucky completing the order of finish.
The Springboard Mile is part of the Road to the 2018 Kentucky Derby prep race season. Greyvitos earned 10 points for the win, with Combatant receiving 4 for second, Kingsville 2 for third, and Night Strike 1 for fourth.
Greyvitos won his second straight – following the Grade 3 Bob Hope Stakes at Del Mar – after going winless in his first two career starts. The son of Malibu Moon improved his career earnings to $306,345. While the victory was surely sweet for his connections, the fact that he simply started the race was a win in itself. Greyvitos was stabled at the San Luis Rey training center when a deadly fire struck the facility, killing over 40 horses, though Kitchingman was able to get his entire group to safety.
“He’s been a really nice horse to be around,” Kitchingman said. “The last six months, he’s really blossomed and really shown he’s a nice horse. The last two weeks, I didn’t know if I was going to be training him. We’ve been getting a lot of offers from the ‘big boys’ and I thought for sure the owners were going to sell him. Then we went through the fire, shipping all around the country, it’s been a rollercoaster.”
Greyvitos returned $8 to win, $3.80 to place, and $3.40 to show. Combatant brought back $3.40 to place and $2.80 to show, while Kingsville paid $19 to show.