His seven-race win streak may have come to an end last out when defeated in the Grade 1 Vanderbilt, but William and Corinne Heiligbrodt's Mitole got back on track this Saturday with a dominant performance in the Grade 1 Forego. The 4-year-old son of Eskendereya broke on top but settle just off the pace of speedy Promises Fulfilled, then took over on the far turn and skipped away to win by three lengths as the 4-5 favorite. Ridden by Ricardo Santana, Jr. for trainer Steve Amussen, Mitole completed seven furlongs over Saratoga's fast main track in a stakes-record 1:20.80.
“I think the circumstances for the Vanderbilt just didn't suit him; coming off the huge run in the Met Mile and cutting back to three-quarters,” said Asmussen. “But he came out of the race in good shape, trained beautifully for this, and the results speak for themselves.”
Breaking from the rail position, Promises Fulfilled stumbled slightly at the start and was out-footed down the chute by sharp-breaking Mitole. Luis Saez allowed Promises Fulfilled to rush up the rail to take the lead from Mitole, but still the first quarter was a relatively mild 23.05 seconds.
Santana increased his pressure on the leader for the second quarter-mile, pressuring Promises Fulfilled through the half-mile in 45.58 seconds. Mitole was just cruising alongside his rival into the turn, awaiting Santana's cue to make his move.
Mitole took over nearing the quarter pole, and easily pulled away from his rivals down the stretch. Firenze Fire came from second-last to finish three lengths behind Mitole in second, while Killybegs Captain out-finished Promises Fulfilled for the show.
“Today he broke sharp and put himself in a position where he wanted to be,” Santana said. “He's a really nice horse to ride, and he does everything right.”
Bred in Kentucky by Edward Cox, Mitole was a $20,000 yearling at the Keeneland September sale. He later brought $140,000 at the OBS April sale as a juvenile, and broke his maiden in his third career start. The colt has never finished off the board in 13 starts, with nine wins on his record. He successfully stretched his speed over a mile in the G1 Met Mile this season, and now boasts earnings over $2 million.
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