TORONTO, ON – Entourage Stable’s Pink Lloyd hit the quarter-century mark on Saturday, earning his 25th career victory in the $125,000 Bold Venture Stakes (G3) at Woodbine.
Pink Lloyd broke running from post 4 as the 3/5 favorite under Rafael Hernandez and soon settled into a close stalking position. Up front, Malibu Secret dueled outside of Roaring Forties through opening fractions of :23.22 and :45.60.
Still stuck behind those two at the top of the stretch, Pink Lloyd fought through a narrow opening shortly after straightening for home and bulled his way past the pacesetters to take command.
Olympic Runner rallied valiantly in the stretch to make it close, but Pink Lloyd’s class and talent were too much to overcome. The Robert Tiller trainee crossed a neck ahead in a final time of 1: for the 6 1/2-furlong fast synthetic sprint.
“This is the first time I’ve had to ask him,” Hernandez said. “He broke well, there was no pace in the race, so I had to play it by ear, put him behind a horse. Those other two horses made the pace and I just sat behind them and waited for the time to push the button. I don’t want to be in the front; that’s why I tried keeping him outside, get him relaxed and settled down, and he did it. He settled down, sat behind the two horses that made the pace, and just waited to turn for home.”
Olympic Runner was 3 1/4 lengths clear of Malibu Secret, himself a 1/2 length ahead of Roaring Forties and Magical Man. White Flag and Dun Drum completed the order of finish.
Smart Remark was scratched.
Pink Lloyd’s win was his first in the Bold Venture after finishing fifth in 2018 and fourth in 2019 (though he was later declared a non-starter in the latter). The Ontario-bred 8-year-old Old Forester gelding now carries a record of 31-25-1-1 (including 22 victories in stakes events) with $1,508,300 earned.
Along with avenging his prior two defeats, the Bold Venture had remained Woodbine’s last regularly-scheduled synthetic sprint that Pink Lloyd had not yet won in his iconic career.
“He’s done everything,” Tiller said. “He keeps doing everything. He overcame a bad trip today for him … we win again. It’s the 22nd stakes win, 25th win of his life. I’m in this game a long time and there will never be another horse like him.”
Pink Lloyd returned $3.20 to win, $2.10 to place, while Olympic Runner paid $4.50 to place. As is almost always the case when Pink Lloyd runs, there was no show betting.