ARCADIA, CA – Red Baron’s Barn and Rancho Temescal’s River Boyne slipped through along the rail and surged ahead late to steal Saturday’s $400,000 Frank E. Kilroe Mile Stakes (G1) at Santa Anita Park.
Breaking cleanly from post 2 under Abel Cedillo at 5/1 odds, River Boyne saved ground heading into the clubhouse turn, tucking in just behind the even-money favorite Got Stormy. Ahead of her, Kingly shot out to the lead and posted opening fractions of :23.15 and :46.49.
Got Stormy tipped off the rail heading into the far turn and was cut loose to go around the pacesetter. Behind her, Cedillo tipped River Boyne out in order to get past Kingly as well.
Got Stormy held the lead in mid-stretch, but Cedillo dove back down to the rail with River Boyne, who quickly surged to meet Got Stormy’s throat latch. Despite a game effort from the bettors’ choice, River Boyne proved too tough late, inching ahead before crossing first in a final time of 1:33.88 for the mile-long event over the firm turf course.
Trained by Jeff Mullins, River Boyne was a neck in front of Got Stormy, with a rallying Next Shares finishing just a head behind them in third.
“Well, thank God my horse can go anywhere, inside or outside,” Cedillo said. “I was trying to go outside, but when I saw him move up a little bit, I got plenty of room inside, so I just took a chance to go inside. My horse responded really good. I’m excited, my horse is running really good.”
True Valour bobbled at the start but came running late to take fourth by a 1/2-length over Frontier Market. Sixth went to Sellwood by a neck over Ohio, while behind them came Kingly, Desert Stone, and Sash to complete the order of finish.
River Boyne’s win was his second straight following the Thunder Road Stakes (G3) and improved his overall record to 23-8-5-4. The Irish-bred 5-year-old son of Dandy Man, who went over 13 months between victories before the Thunder Road, has now earned $971,918.
“A perfect trip,” Mullins said. “I told Abel to try and get the same trip as he did last time. This time, he had to go inside instead of outside. Abel has done a great job keeping him in position. That is the way he likes to run and he’s got a really good kick down the lane. He’ll go anywhere you want him to as long as he’s got enough energy left. Abel has done a great job of saving it until it counts, so a lot of credit goes to Abel.”
River Boyne returned $12 to win, $5.20 to place, and $3.40 to show. Got Stormy brought back $2.80 to place and $2.40 to show, while Next Shares paid $5 to show.