6 GP The Hals Hope (GIII)
$100.000 4yo&Up 1 1/8m Dirt 124lbs +penalties
The fact that the post time favorite was 5.95/1 certainly helps to explain how wide open Friday’s The Hals Hope (GIII) was… and in the end a major change in tactics helped to spell the winner. Long Time Ago, trained by Maletto, is usually a speed demon, a pace setter, get in front and go… but not today. The chestnut gelding sat back, moved forward when asked and got the win by a head in a final time of 1:47.84 for the classic mile and an eighth distance. Admiration, my pick, was just a head back in second, with Waiting On My Moment two lengths back in third. Courageous Tantra got the minor money.
The gate was full, with twelve breaking from the gate, and the field made the short run to the clubhouse turn with Halon on the front, Courageous Tantra to his outside, Five Little Pigs back towards the inside and Storming on his flank. Goat Locker was in behind that one, back to the rail for Long Time Ago, Beach Dandy to his inside and Waiting On My Moment along the rail. Admiration was four wide, Goldbracletparade next to him, Gaius Julius Caesar out wide and Wakey Wakey was the early trailer.
Around the clubhouse turn and on to the backside with five and a half furlongs to run, Courageous Tantra was up to stick a head in front of Halon, a gap of three to the trio of Goat Locker on the outside, Storming between rivals and Five Little Pigs on the inside, then a gap back to Beach Dandy between horses, Waiting On My Moment on the rail and Long Time Ago three wide, another two lengths to Wakey Wakey on the outside of Admiration, Goldbracletparade skimming the rail and Gaius Julius Caesar was at the back of the pack.
The field made their way down the backside and were now midway on the far turn, they had five-sixteenths of a mile to run and Courageous Tantra had skipped away to lead by a length and a half. Halon on the inside of that one, Goat Locker now third, then a length to Storming towards the inside, Five Little Pigs continuing to save ground and Long Time Ago four wide. Another gap to Waiting On My Moment, Beach Dandy to his outside, then a length to Admiration now four wide, Wakey Wakey five side, Goldbracletparade still on the hedge and Gaius Julius Caesar was still the back marker.
Now into the lane and past the furlong marker, Courageous Tantra was being joined by Long Time Ago, and on the far outside, Admiration was now full of run and coming after the leader. It was an all out battle through the last 150 yards, Long Time Ago, Admiration closing in… and as the hit the wire, Long Time Ago was able to hold off the challenge of Admiration and hang on for the win. Waiting On My Moment close a late gap to grab the third spot from Courageous Tantra. Goldbracletparade was fifth, Gaius Julius Caesar in sixth, Wakey Wakey seventh, Beach Dandy eighth, Storming ninth, Five Little Pigs And Goat Dancer together in tenth and Halon closed this one out.
Long Time Ago is a 4yo chestnut gelding, bred in Cal by Mb Stables and is by All Out Blitz – Recorded Slaying, by Kingslayer. He was acquired by Maletto at the Dec Auction for $52.000 and has proved to be quite a purchase. He now shows seven wins from twelve starts, three wins from four starts since the purchase, and he now has $314.850 in earnings.
$2 Mutuel Prices:
|3 – Long Time Ago||18.70||8.60||6.80|
|8 – Admiration||8.60||6.60|
|1 – Waiting On My Moment||5.90|
Track: Fast Time: :461 1:10 1:351 1:474
$1 Exacta: 3 – 8 Paid 50.20 $1 Trifecta: 3 – 8 – 1 Paid 1,261.30
Scratched: Wild Hippies
Long Time Ago broke in hand and settled well of of the pace, steady gain to move into contention into the lane, all out battle to the wire while getting out late, prevailed. Admiration away slowly, content to set will off of the pace, swept up through the far turn, could not get to the winner in a game effort, second best. Waiting On My Moment broke in hand, sat off of the pace while saving ground, responded when asked while no threat to the top pair. Courageous Tantra broke alertly, up to take the lead into the back stretch, headed, tired in the late stages. Goldbracletparade well back early, some late foot. Gaius Julius Caesar trailed, best effort too late. Wakey Wakey was not a factor. Beach Dandy was outrun. Storming raced up near the pace to the far turn, tired. Five Little Pigs early foot, tired. Goat Locker showed good early speed, tired. Halon broke alertly to lead, tracked the pace, tired.