Iron Nation Impresses in SAR Derby

SAR Derby- $750.000 Purse
SAR- For Three Year Olds
One Mile and Three Sixteenths on the Turf
August 15, 2020

The SAR Derby is an exciting race that was created last year to give us an opportunity to see some of the top three year old turf horses in the game. They don’t get as much publicity as the dirt stars, especially at this age, but they are certainly just as talented at their trade. Iron Nation came into the race looking like one of the horses to beat, and was our second choice in the preview, and eventually got sent off as the post time favorite at odds of 5/1. Therefore, most saw this race as being very wide open without a clear cut horse to beat. With this win, Iron Nation should become an easier pick in upcoming races. Of course, most of the attention in this division was on the AP Million, and rightfully so, but Iron Nation will certainly be ready to take on the older horses going forward. He is trained by Nakamura Stables, and was ridden by S Ryan. Each picked up their first win in the race. Congratulations! It was run in a time of 1:51.90, quicker than last year’s inaugural race. Let’s take a look!

(½ Mile- :47.57)- Emerging as the fastest out of the gate would be Flake Gold, one of the Nakamura Stables’ entries who prevailed over the Mb Stables-trained Hamburglar down the front stretch for the first time, and moving into the turn. After half a mile, Flake Gold would have a length lead over the new second place horse, Black Horizon, from Maxmillion Farm. That one also started really well, and poked a head in front of Hamburglar at this stage of the race. Flushed, out of Diablo Diablo, was not initially fast from the gate, but gradually advanced his position within the clubhouse turn to be alongside of Hamburglar. Our eventual winner, Iron Nation, seemed to get off to a conservative start, and did well to hold his line and stalk his stablemate while being on the rail, two lengths from the lead. He was a length in front of a tight pack. A three wide group was behind him, consisting of, from inside to outside, Karma To Come (Threshold), Shore Party (D J C Racing Stables), and Annihilator (Eastern Equine). Running to the inside and outside of that threesome, half a length behind them would be Bannister (John Henry) and Darth Invader (Diablo Diablo), and in close proximity to them was Vengeful (Mb Stables) and Cinnamon Strike (Smokey Stover). Cleverly stating behind that traffic jam of a pack was Clever Me (Royalty Stables).

(¾ Mile- 1:10.86)- In the backstretch, and moving into the turn, Flake Gold continues to hold the lead, but he is starting to feel a little more pressure. It does not come from either Black Horizon or Hamburglar, as those two are content to hold their positions while still running well. The same could also be said for Flushed. Instead, the looming challenger would be Iron Nation, who moved off the rail approaching the turn, and positioned himself to make a pass for the lead while running to the outside of Flake Gold. He had a length and a half to make up now, but perhaps just as importantly, he gained ground on Black Horizon here. Back in the we started to see a few looking to find lanes in which to run, but no noteworthy runs as of yet.

(Top Of Stretch, 1.7F To Go)- While running in the turn, G Franco seemed to take the hint on Black Horizon that he needed to respond to the advance of Iron Return, and we began to see the best form out of this one now. Once side by side, Black Horizon and Iron Return were both looking good and completed the pass of Flake Gold as they hit the top of the stretch. Black Horizon had a neck in front, but surely this was going to be a battle to the wire. Flake Gold and Hamburglar still ran decently, but did not seem as though they were going to match up to these two. Meanwhile, Annihilator had done well to emerge from that pack while running in the outside lane, and had two lengths to make up on the top two. That would be a tough challenge considering they were still running well, but Annihilator’s lane was clear to make the attempt. Shore Party looked like he had some run in him, but nowhere to go with it, and Flushed began dropping back. Our pick to win, Darth Invader became positioned to make an outside run in the stretch, but was not able to make it work once he was there. Others were in tight company to make a run, even if they had it in them.

(Finish- 1:51.90)- In the stretch, both Iron Return and Black Horizon do their best to run strong to the wire, but midway through, it was pretty clear that Iron Return was the better of the two, and he ends up winning the race by nearly a full length over Black Horizon. Annihilator made a great bid and did all he could, but conceded too much ground at the start of the race. He’ll still get the third place check. Bannister came on through the pack on the inside to be fourth, and will hope for less traffic around him in his next start. Flake Gold and Hamburglar fell to fifth and sixth, topping Shore Party, Darth Invader, Clever Me, Flushed, Cinnamon Strike, Vengeful, and Karma To Come.

About The Winner- Iron Nation, trained by Nakamura Stables, and ridden to victory by S Ryan, is a three year old gelding by Telling Ya, and is out of Chanceux. He was bred by Nakamura Stables as a yearling in California, and they have been together throughout. Congratulations to the connections! The win is his fourth in 11 starts, and his third stake win. His career earnings are now $701.000.

##   Horse Name Owner Name Jockey Odds   Fin Time SRF 
  Iron Nation Nakamura Stables Ryan S 5.10   13/4 1:51.90 xx
  Black Horizon Maxmillion Farm Franco G 7.75   21/2 1:52.07 xx
  Annihilator Eastern Equine Castellano J J 11.55   3nk 1:52.20 xx
  Bannister John Henry Desormeaux K J 22.00   41 1:52.27 xx
  Flake Gold Nakamura Stables Mena M 11.55   5no 1:52.54 xx
  Hamburglar Mb Stables Stein J 9.55   6no 1:52.56 xx
  Shore Party D J C Racing Stables Jaramillo E 13.25   71/4 1:52.57 xx
  Darth Invader Diablo Diablo Bridgmohan S X 5.55   8hd 1:52.65 xx
  Clever Me Royalty Stables Cohen D 14.60   9no 1:52.69 xx
  Flushed Diablo Diablo Saez L 6.40   101/2 1:52.71 xx
  Cinnamon Strike Smokey Stover Franco M 10.45   111/4 1:52.85 xx
  Vengeful Mb Stables Rosado R J 11.05   121/2 1:52.93 xx
  Karma To Come Threshold Bahen S R 84.30   13 1:53.07 xx

Track: Firm

Time: :472  1:104  1:341  1:514

$2 Mutuel Prices:

2 – Iron Nation 12.20 6.10 4.40
3 – Black Horizon   8.30 5.50
12 – Annihilator     6.90

$1 Exacta: 2 – 3 Paid 91.50

$1 Trifecta: 2 – 3 – 12 Paid 690.10

Scratched: None

— NS

Categories: NG Stakes, STAKES ARTICLES

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