SOUTH OZONE PARK, NY – Fresh off of his first career graded score in September’s Grade 2 Kelso Handicap, Klaravich Stables and William Lawrence’s Patternrecognition took the field gate to wire in Saturday’s Grade 1, $750,000 Cigar Mile Handicap Presented by NYRA Bets at Aqueduct.
Hustled aggressively from the far outside gate under Jose Ortiz at 5/1 odds, Patternrecognition was able to get the jump on his fellow speed horses and cross over cleanly before posting opening fractions of :22.88 and :45.68. Still in hand with 2 furlongs to go, Ortiz gave his mount the cue and he responded in kind. Digging in late to repel a futile charge from longshot True Timber, Patternrecognition crossed the finish line with a 3/4-length lead. The Chad Brown trainee’s final time was 1:34.98 for the 8-furlong event over the fast main track.
“He broke out of there very sharply,” Ortiz said. “The way he broke, I didn’t want to give the lead away, so I used my own judgment and took a shot and went straight to the rail and took the lead. He got pressured pretty good. I took a big risk because those weren’t the instructions, but it worked out.”
Sunny Ridge ran strongly enough to take third over the 8/5 favorite Mendelssohn, with Pat On the Back just a 1/2-length farther behind in fifth. Stan the Man, Timeline, and a misfiring Copper Town completed the order of finish.
Patternrecognition’s win was his third straight and improved his overall record to 11-5-5-0, with his lone off-the-board performance coming on May 5, 2018, which was his first start in six months. The 5-year-old son of Adios Charlie, who experienced several missteps early in his career and didn’t make his first start until age 4, has now earned $812,325 for his patient connections.
“Obviously, he’s had some soundness issues along the way, and I want to thank the owners as well, Seth Klarman and Bill Lawrence, for never giving up on this horse,” Brown said. “He needed the time and they gave him the time to always get healthy when we needed to rest the horse. Ultimately, he showed the talent that we thought he had when they bought him what seems like forever ago as a 2-year-old, and this is really a great moment for this horse. He deserves it.”
Patternrecognition returned $12.80 to win, $6.80 to place, and $4.40 to show. True Timber brought back $23.80 to place and $10.80 to show, while Sunny Ridge paid $3.90 to show.