Fast And Accurate Holds On To Earn Derby Points In Spiral

by | 03.25.2017 | 6:21pm
Fast and Accurate wins the 2017 Spiral Stakes

Dr. Kendall E. Hansen, the owner of Breeders' Cup Juvenile winning sire Hansen, purchased a son of his Eclipse award-winning stallion at the OBS April 2-year-old in training sale. Named Fast and Accurate, the 3-year-old colt was able to hold on in this Saturday's Grade 3 Spiral Stakes at Turfway Park, winning the 1 1/8-mile contest by about a length. Sent out of the gates at odds of 24-1, the colt gave trainer Mike Maker his fourth Spiral victory, stopping the clock in 1:50.96 over the polytrack for jockey Tyler Gaffalione. The win also earned Fast and Accurate his first 50 points on the Road to the Kentucky Derby, virtually guaranteeing him a spot in the starting gate on the first Saturday in May.

“The race set up beautifully,” said Gaffalione. “My horse broke well. I looked to the outside and I saw Mike's other horse [En Hanse] going to the lead and he [Maker] had told me if the other one broke better to just sit behind him. We had a beautiful trip going into the far turn. I put him on the outside and he just hit another gear. Down the lane he just kept lengthening in stride.”

Breaking from the 3-post in the 12-horse field, Fast and Accurate was able to maintain good position along the rail heading into the first turn, just off the lead of stablemate En Hanse. Parlor was just to his outside, and around the clubhouse turn moved into second, alongside Fast and Accurate and a length behind the leader. En Hanse continued to lead through fractions of :23.22 and :46.36, but gave in easily when Fast and Accurate confronted him on the outside in the far turn.

Fast and Accurate had the lead at the head of the lane by about a length, and even drew away from his rivals a bit. The late closers started running and threatened to challenge his lead, but Gaffalione had saved just enough horse to keep Fast and Accurate in front at the wire by a diminishing length. Blueridge Traveler was moving well up the rail to finish second, with Convict Pike nailing Kitten's Cat in a photo finish for third.

Bred in Pennsylvania by John R. Penn, Fast and Accurate was purchased for $85,000 as a 2-year-old at the OBS April sale. Hansen, a Northern Kentucky physician, went to the 2012 Kentucky Derby with Hansen the horse, who finished ninth. The Eclipse champion 2-year-old for 2011, he stood at stud in the United States only one season before being sent to South Korea. Hansen the man has worked diligently to gain winners for Hansen the sire from his single U.S. crop.

“We had so many [Hansen foals] that we were just trying to fill in the blanks,” Maker said, explaining the winner's entry in a maiden claiming race in December, which he won.  “We were trying to get some more winners for Hansen.  We had a lot of confidence [coming in to the Spiral].”

Fast and Accurate didn't seem to get the racing game figured out until he tried Turfway's polytrack in December, when he broke his maiden for a claiming tag of $30,000. Nobody bought Fast and Accurate out of that race, so Maker shipped him down to Gulfstream where he ran to a big win on the turf in a starter stake. The Spiral is his first graded stakes win, and brings his overall record to three wins from six starts, with earnings of over $350,000.

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