In his two previous starts, Firing Line finished second beaten a head by undefeated Dortmund. At Sunland Park late Sunday afternoon, the colt got out of his rival's shadow with an imperious romp in the Grade 3, $800,000 Sunland Derby.
Traveling on the rail and close to pace-setting Why Two, Firing Line seized the lead after opening fractions of :22.33 and :45.39. Under jockey Gary Stevens, he began to kick away easily, expanding his lead to 14 1/4 lengths as he crossed the wire. Where's the Moon was a distant second, followed by Pain and Misery and Tiznow R J. Final time for the nine furlongs was 1:47.39.
Simon Callaghan trains Firing Line, who won his second start by more than four lengths at Del Mar last November before stepping up to stakes company. The colt is owned by Arnold Zetcher, who purchased him for $240,000 at the Keeneland April Sale in 2014.
Firing Line was bred in Kentucky by Clearsky Farms and is by Spendthrift Farm stallion Line of David out of Sister Girl Blues (Hold for Gold).
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