David Palmer's Wet Your Whistle was a $17,000 yearling purchase at Keeneland September, and the 4-year-old gelding proved he was a bargain with a win in Saturday's Grade 1 Highlander Stakes at Woodbine. Sired by Stroll, Wet Your Whistle came flying down the center of the firm turf course to complete six furlongs in 1:07.88 and maintain his undefeated record this season. Off at odds of 7-2, the gelding was ridden to his 1 1/2-length victory by Alex Cintron for trainer Michael Trombetta.
“The last couple times he did not get out so well,” said Cintron of the rough starts out of the gate. “I just left him alone. He's been running great that – I just tried not to change anything in this race. I just tried to ride the same race I rode the last time. And I think he ran better than the last time. I was impressed with the last quarter of a mile… he was flying. He floated.”
Yorkton and Extravagant duked it out early in the Highlander, dueling through early splits of :22.44 and :44.87, as Cintron and Wet Your Whistle watched the proceedings from near the back of the pack.
Turning for home, Wet Your Whistle, third choice on the tote board, was taken to the outside and began to pick up steam as the real running started. He continued to gather momentum and struck front with authority, going on to notch a 1 ½-length win. Extravagant Kid was second, White Flag was third and El Tormenta took fourth.
“You know he just learned to settle himself down just enough,” said Trombetta. “He's a high-strung type of individual and he's learned to run when he's supposed to and it's been a lot fun.
“He is one of those kind of horses. He can do five-and-a-half (furlongs) and probably up to a mile. I think he definitely prefers one turn, but there's lots of options for him. You know, he will do synthetic as well. So there are lots of choices.”
Bred in Kentucky by E. H. Lane II, Wet Your Whistle is out of the Belong to Me mare Winlocs Glory Days, who earned $155,260 on the track. The gelding broke his maiden at first asking in July of his 3-year-old season, but did not win again until trekking up to Woodbine in December of that year. Now, Wet Your Whistle is on a four-race win streak, graduating in Grade 1 company in his first graded stakes try. His overall record stands at five wins from 11 starts with earnings of over $300,000.
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