Godolphin's Frosted was the very impressive winner of Saturday's Grade 1 Mohegan Sun Metropolitan Handicap, making his first start since a disappointing fifth-place finish in the Dubai World Cup. The 4-year-old son of Tapit blew away his competition by 14 1/4 lengths, covering a mile over Belmont's fast main track in 1:32.73 for trainer Kiaran McLaughlin. Frosted's victory not only gave McLaughlin his second win on the Belmont Stakes undercard, but it was also the fastest Met Mile ever run, and the largest winning margin ever recorded.
“It was unbelievable,” said McLaughlin. “It was a wild, wild race. He has been doing great all the time and you say that every time that they are doing great, but for him to beat that great of horses like that is pretty incredible.”
Joel Rosario, angling for his third winner on the stakes-packed Belmont card, tucked Frosted in behind the early leaders until nearly the head of the lane, allowing the colt to save ground as much as possible in the one-turn mile event. Anchor Down, unsettled before the start, came away from the gate the quickest, but was quickly joined along the rail by Noble Bird through a :22.78 first quarter-mile. Marking was sent through between horses to join Noble Bird on the the lead, as those two together marked a half-mile in :45.35. Frosted and Rosario were able to utilize the hole left by Marking to move up just behind the leading triumvirate as the field approached the second half of Belmont's wide turn for home.
It looked briefly as though Frosted would be stuck behind a three-wide wall of horses with Blofeld to his outside, but Rosario bulled his way to swing outside of Anchor Down just as that horse took over the lead from Noble Bird and Marking. Frosted strode alongside Anchor Down for the shortest of moments, then absolutely exploded to stretch toward the wire. He was quickly double-digit lengths in front of the field, and Rosario wrapped up before the wire as Frosted finished 14 1/4 lengths in front of Anchor Down. Upstart came from behind to finish third, a length behind Anchor Down, and Marking held on to be another length back in fourth.
“He really ran a big race today, probably the best race of his life,” said Rosario. “It's very special to come here today and make all of us very happy.”
Bred in Kentucky by Darley, Frosted is out of Fast Cookie, a graded stakes-winning daughter of Deputy Minister. He spent much of 2015 chasing American Pharoah, finishing fourth behind him in the Kentucky Derby and then second behind the Triple Crown winner in the Belmont Stakes. He pressed the pace of American Pharoah in the Travers, opening up the race for Keen Ice to nail the champ on the wire. Frosted also finished seventh behind American Pharoah in the Breeders' Cup Classic. Frosted now boasts a career record of 5-6-1 from 16 starts, with earnings of over $3.2 million.
“We'll worry about [the Breeders' Cup] later,” McLaughlin said. “It might be the Classic instead of the Mile. We'll wait and see. He is very talented and it was a great win for the entire team.”
Watch the race replay here:
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