LEXINGTON, KY. (October 20, 2011) – Winning his second stakes in his fourth start since arriving in North America, Andreas Jacobs’ Sanagas (GER) took the lead down the stretch and won the 17th running of the $100,00 Sycamore on Thursday in track-record time before a Keeneland crowd of 6,943.
The Sycamore, a Grade 3 race, was to be run at 1½ miles on the turf course but because of persistent rain was moved to the main track and held at 1 5/8 miles.
Ridden by Rajiv Maragh for trainer Graham Motion, Sanagas was the 9-5 second choice in the Sycamore field of six 3-year-olds and older horses. He raced in fourth place while Bim Bam led the field through fractions of :25.05, :49.25 and 1:39.23.
As the field turned for home, the pace quickened and Sanagas made a four-wide move to take the lead. He held off the late charge of Tahoe Lake (BRZ) to win by a half-length and covered the distance in 2:39.40, which lowered the previous mark of 2:42.69 set by Jade’s Revenge in April 2008.
Sanagas returned $5.80, $4.40 and $2.80. Tahoe Lake, ridden by Manny Cruz, paid $9.80 and $3.20. Favored Center Divider, who finished 2¼ lengths behind in third with Julien Leparoux aboard, returned $2.60 to show.
Completing the field in order were Bim Bam, Odds On (BRZ) and the winner’s stablemate, Eagle Poise.
The victory was worth $60,000 to Sanagas, who won the 1½-mile John’s Call at Saratoga in August. The 5-year-old son of Lomitas (GB) improved his career record to six wins in nine starts and earnings of $132,282.
Sanagas was one of three horses on Thursday to break track records. In the fifth race, Hammers Terror lowered the mark for the Beard Course distance of seven furlongs and 184 feet when he won in :1:24.31. The winner of the ninth race, Baby Afleet, lowered the 1 1/16-mile mark to 1:41.61
A total of five track records have fallen during the first 10 days of Keeneland’s 17-day Fall Meeting. On October 14, Applauding lowered the six-furlong mark to 1:07.76. On Wednesday, the 3-year-old Newsdad won at 1¼ miles in 2:00.61.
Racing continues Friday with a 10-race program that begins at 1:15 p.m. (ET). Highlighting the card is the 21st running of the $150,000 Pin Oak Valley View (G3) for 3-year-old fillies going 1 1/16 miles on the grass. The Pin Oak Valley View is the ninth race with a 5:23 p.m. post time.
Friday is See Blue Day at Keeneland, with events to kick off the University of Kentucky’s homecoming weekend. UK students, faculty and staff with a valid UK ID and UK Alumni Association members with a membership card will receive free general admission. Former UK star running back Artose Pinner will autograph commemorative UK/Keeneland 75th Anniversary hats (on sale for $15) to raise money for UK’s DanceBlue initiative and UK’s Pediatric Oncology Clinic.