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Handsome Mike Upsets Pennsylvania Derby Field

Handsome Mike fought off all challengers to surprise six rivals, including odds-on favorite Alpha, to win the $1 million Pennsylvania Derby (G2) at PARX Racing on Saturday.

Ridden by Irad Ortiz Jr., Handsome Mike is owned by J. Paul Reddam and trained by Leandro Mora, deputizing for Doug O’Neill.  Macho Macho finished second and Golden Ticket was third. Alpha finished sixth after battling with Handsome Mike to the top of the lane before giving way.

The winner, a son of Scat Daddy, covered the 1 1/8 miles in 1:51.63 after leading throughout with only light pressure from Alpha through modest early fractions. Handsome Mike, bred in Kentucky by John Liviakis, is produced from the Smart Strike mare Classic Strike. He is based with O’Neill’s string in Southern California.

Handsome Mike returned $40.40 to his backers.

 Handsome Mike/Equi-photo