Amy Dunne's Leinster emerged from his winning graded stakes debut in Saturday's Grade 3 Troy in good order, trainer Rusty Arnold said on Sunday morning. The 4-year-old Majestic Warrior bay colt broke the track record for 5 ½ furlongs at Saratoga completing the race in a time of 1:00.23 on a firm Mellon turf course, and will now target another graded stakes win in the Grade 3, $700,000 Kentucky Downs Turf Sprint on September 7.
The Kentucky Downs Turf Sprint offers the winner an expenses-paid berth to the Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint this fall at Santa Anita Park.
Leinster, a half-brother to two-time Grade 1 Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint winner Stormy Liberal, won his two turf sprint starts leading into the Troy. He began his racing career with Hall of Fame trainer D. Wayne Lukas but was never able to find the winner's circle in 11 starts over the main track. He finally broke his maiden at 13th asking when stepping up against allowance company over the turf at Keeneland in his third start for Arnold.
“He's in good shape,” Arnold said. “The people that owned him wanted to sprint him on grass. They asked to do it. When we cut him back sprinting on grass, he's run well.”
The victory built on a highly successful weekend for Arnold, who saddled Concrete Rose to a win in the Saratoga Oaks Invitational presented by Encore Boston Harbor on Friday.
Bred in Kentucky by Gryphon Investments, Leinster was an $85,000 purchase from the Fasig-Tipton July Yearling Sale in 2016. He is out of the Royal Academy broodmare Vassar who, in addition to Stormy Liberal, produced Grade 1-placed Coast Guard.
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