B.J. Wright and Robert LaPenta’s Florida-bred Jeranimo flashed a tremendous late burst to win the Eddie Read Stakes (G1) July 20 at Del Mar.
Sent postward the 5-2 favorite in an outstanding field of grass campaigners, Jeranimo was ridden by Rafael Bejarano. Outrun in his customary style during the early stages of the nine-furlong race over the infield turf course, Jeranimo rallied dramatically to score a 1 1/2 length victory in a flossy 1:45.80 for the distance, a second slower than the course record of 1:44.79 set by Aragorn in the 2006 Read. The winner’s final furlong was clocked in 11.37 seconds.
Irish-bred Vagabond Shoes, a 23-1 outsider ridden by Victor Espinoza, closed strongly to finish second, a half-length in front of 37-1 Fly Lexis Fly, with Fed Biz, who carved out swift fractions in a duel with Slim Shadey, fading to fourth another 1 1/2 lengths farther back.
Jeranimo, a son of Congaree trained by Mike Pender, was runner-up two summers ago in the Read to Del Mar Horse of the Meeting Acclamation who later received an Eclipse Award as America’s top older male Thoroughbred. First prize of $180,000 pushed the veteran stakes campaigner’s earnings to $1,400,864. It was his tenth victory in 35 career outings and seventh in 21 starts on grass.
Jeranimo returned $7.80, $4.20 and $3.80, while Vagabond Shoes paid $13.60 and $8.60 and Fly Lexis Fly returned $11 to show.