ELMONT, NY – In wire to wire fashion, Marconi made it look easy by winning Saturday’s Woodford Reserve Brooklyn Invitational Stakes (G2) at Belmont Park. This was the third consecutive win for the four-year-old son of Tapit.
You’re to Blame and Realm both broke well from the outside and met up with Marconi on the lead as they hit the first turn. Marconi led the whole way around and set fractions of :25.16, :50.87, and 1:16.17. The only pressure he faced in the early going was from You’re to Blame on his outside who matched strides as they worked around the backstretch. Realm also made a move at Marconi around the turn but Marconi easily dismissed the threat and pulled away down the stretch to win by 1/2 lengths. Rocketry came on well late to finish second, Realm was third, and Campaign finished fourth.
“He broke a little slow. He was looking around a little bit, but after that, I sent him and let him gallop alone on the lead,” jockey Jose Lezcano said. “When I asked at the three-sixteenths pole, he gave me everything he had and went on to win the race. I wanted to be close. When the other Pletcher horse came to me, I wouldn’t give him the lead.”
“It seems like he’s really found his niche. He’s gradually improving and been a lot more consistent in not only his races, but also training,” trainer Todd Pletcher said. “I was happy to see him continue moving forward. The plan wasn’t to be on the front but we wanted him to be in the race. Especially from the one-hole, I didn’t want him to be shuffled back and over complicate things for him. Once Jose was able to establish that spot, the fractions were very reasonable. He kept finding a way to get it done.”
Marconi returned $10.40 to win, $5.90 to place, and $4.50 to show. Rocketry brought back $6.50 to place and $4.60 to show, while Realm paid $8.20 to show.