Ami's Holiday needed the length of the stretch to reel in Big Bazinga in Sunday's $174,700 Grade 3 Grey Stakes, at Woodbine.
Trained by Josie Carroll for owner Ivan Dalos, the bay son of Harlan's Holiday went to post as the 3-2 mutuel choice in the 1 1/16-mile ‘Poly' tilt which featured four horses following the scratch of Matador.
The Grey Stakes, as part of the Kentucky Derby points system, offered 10 points (10-4-2-1) to the winner.
Big Bazinga took the field into the opening turn notching the opening quarter in :23.53. Give No Quarter, shipped in from Presque Isle Downs by trainer Graham Motion, edged closer to the leader down the backstretch as Big Bazinga marked the half in :48.48.
Ami's Holiday, last of four into the final turn, was urged into contention by Luis Contreras and was all out down the lane to collar Big Bazinga in the final stride for a half-length victory.
Big Bazinga was 10 1/4-lengths in front of third-place finisher Go Greeley. Give No Quarter was eased in the stretch run and did not finish. Ami's Holiday covered 1 1/16-miles in 1:44.48.
Contreras was pleased with the effort of his colt, a 3 1/4-length sprint winner on debut, trying two turns for the first time despite lugging in through the stretch.
“Last time he really surprised me as I wasn't sure he had the speed to win the race,” said Contreras. “”He was very good all around (today). From the three-eighths (pole) to the wire, he just likes to lay on horses.”
Ami's Holiday, bred in Ontario by Tall Oaks Farm, banked $124,200 in victory, while maintaining a perfect record through two career starts.
He returned $5.10 combining with Big Bazinga for a (5-1) $25.60 exactor. There was no place or show wagering. Matador was scratched.
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