SARATOGA SPRINGS, NY – Larkin Armstrong’s Harmonize took advantage of the class relief and found the winner’s circle for the first time in 2017, taking Saturday’s Grade 3, $200,000 Glens Falls.
After failing to hit the board in two Grade 1s and two more Grade 2s this year, Harmonize seemed to enjoy returning to the site of her maiden-breaking win almost exactly two years ago, on September 3, 2015.
She and jockey John Velazquez spent much of the race running three- and four-wide in midpack while Grateful and jockey Manny Franco led the field around all three turns. Exiting onto the stretch, Harmonize rallied to make an outside bid, dueling and brushing with Grateful to the wire before emerging victorious by a neck in a final time of 2:15.59 for the 1 3/8-mile turf race.
“I was happy with where I was,” said Velazquez, who earned his fourth win of the day on the Bill Mott trainee. “I tried to get her in front a little too soon (but) she waited, so it was a little tricky ride. When I got her to pass, he (Franco) bumped me, so we were riding side by side, with him on the inside, but it all worked out in the end.”
War Flag charged late from the back of the field to take third. Estrechada weakened in the stretch drive after riding in second for much of the trip and finished fourth. Lottie, Summersault, Sweet Sandy, Sarandia, and Happyness completed the order of finish.
The win improved the 4-year-old Scat Daddy daughter’s record to 16-5-4-1 with career earnings of $872,860.
Harmonize paid $9.40 to win, $4.70 to place, and $3.20 to show. Grateful paid $7.20 to place and $4.10 to show, while War Flag paid $3.20 to show.