LEXINGTON, KY – China Horse Club and WinStar Farm’s Nashville kept his perfect record intact with an effortless record-breaking run in Saturday’s $125,000 Perryville Stakes at Keeneland.
Nashville broke from the rail as the 1/9 favorite under Ricardo Santana Jr. and went straight to the front on his own, where he set quick opening fractions of :21.54 and :43.87 while maintaining a lengthy advantage.
Like a gargoyle atop the Notre Dame cathedral, Santana Jr. remained motionless as Nashville – ears perked while never exerting himself – crossed 3 1/2 lengths clear at the wire.
The Steve Asmussen trainee’s final time for the 6-furlong fast dirt sprint was 1:07.89, over a half-second faster than the previous best of 1:08.43 that A. P. Indian set while winning the 2016 Phoenix Stakes (G2).
Wild Wes rallied for second, 3 3/4 lengths ahead of the winner’s stablemate Little Menace.
Bango, Fore Left, Cajun Brother, and Relentless Dancer completed the order of finish in the race restricted to 3-year-olds.
Nashville’s win came in his inaugural stakes attempt and followed similarly eye-popping victories at Saratoga on debut in September and over this course last month. The 3-year-old Speightstown colt has now earned $157,200 and will likely make his next start in the 7-furlong Malibu Stakes (G1) at Santa Anita Park on December 26.
Nashville returned $2.20 to win, $2.10 to place, and $2.10 to show. Wild Wes brought back $8.60 to place and $5 to show, while Little Menace paid $4.60 to show.