Hillwood Stable's Cordmaker, third by two necks in the 1 ¼-mile Pimlico Special (G3) in his previous start, slipped through an opening along the rail at the top of the stretch and went on to post a half-length victory in Sunday's $100,000 Polynesian Stakes at Laurel Park.
The Polynesian for 3-year-olds and up was the second of four $100,000 stakes on a Father's Day program that included the Alma North for 3-year-old fillies, also at seven furlongs, as well as the Prince George's County for 3-year-olds and up and Big Dreyfus for females 3 and older, each on Laurel's world-class turf course.
It was the sixth career win at Laurel for Cordmaker ($6.80) and third in a stakes, following the one-mile Jennings Dec. 29 and the 1 1/8-mile Harrison E. Johnson March 16. The winning time was 1:21.37 over a fast main track.
“All year long, since his first work, I saw a different horse than he was as a 3-year-old,” trainer Rodney Jenkins said. “We're really proud of him.”
The 50-1 long shot Old Time Revival outsprinted his rivals to the lead and went a quarter-mile in 22.45 seconds flanked by multiple stakes winner Lewisfield on his inside and 9-5 favorite No Dozing to his right, with Cordmaker leading a tightly packed second flight. Old Time Revival gained some separation after a half in 44.70, as Lewisfield and No Dozing struggled to keep up.
Old Time Revival maintained the advantage turning for home but drifted toward the center of the track, leaving plenty of room for Cordmaker to power though to the lead under Victor Carrasco. Clubman, off a 20-1, made a bold run on the far outside to get second, three-quarters of a length ahead of Majestic Dunhill, who followed Cordmaker's move up the rail.
No Dozing, making his first start since becoming a graded-stakes winner in the Bold Ruler (G3) Nov. 2 at Aqueduct, finished last, beaten 7 ¾ lengths.
“We had speed on the outside and I had to get after him a little bit early to make sure I kept my position,” Carrasco said. “I knew [Old Time Revival] likes to get out, so I said I'm just going to wait for it and when the hole was open we went through and he got it done.”
Cordmaker is a gelded 4-year-old son of two-time Horse of the Year and 2014 Hall of Famer Curlin that has earned all six of his wins at Laurel. He came within a half-length of graded-stakes success in the historic Pimlico Special, beaten by Tenfold and You're to Blame.
“I wish he'd have gotten a little quicker run to the stretch. He was wide and he was flying, but that's him,” Jenkins said of the Special. “That's the way he's going to run. You're not going to rush him to the front. If you do, you don't have horse.”
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