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Brave Dave, Doubled Score at Monmouth

In Monmouth Park’s two premier events for juveniles, Brave Dave overcame a bad stumble out of the gate to capture the Grade 3 $100,000 Sapling Stakes and Doubled closed strongly up the rail to take the $100,000 Sorority Stakes before a crowd 15,424  on Sunday.

Brave Dave, the 8-5 favorite in the field of six 2-year-old colts, stayed on his feet and then made every pole a winning one as he traveled six furlongs on a fast track in 1:10 2/5 and returned $5.40, $3.20 and $2.20. Special Jo finished three-quarters of a length behind and paid $5.40 and $3 and completed the $23 exacta. It was another four-and-a-half lengths back to Drum Roll, who paid $2.20 to show.

“He took a really bad stumble out of the gate, but I know this horse and how fast he is,” jockey Paco Lopez, who rode four winners on the day. “He rebounded pretty quickly and was in front quickly. I was just sitting and waiting, and sitting and waiting, until the quarter pole when I asked my horse. I saw the other horse (Special Jo) coming with his run and my horse responded nicely.”

Trained by Eddie Plesa, Jr., Brave Dave was bred in Florida by Plesa, David Melin and Bea Oxenburg and the colt is owned by Melin and Laurie Plesa. In notching his first stakes win, he won the second of three starts and boosted his earnings to $91,100.

In the Sorority Stakes, the Cathal Lynch-trained Doubled covered the six furlongs over a fast main track in 1:11 4/5 and paid $32.80, $6.60 and $4.20. 

I’mclassyandsassy, the 1-5 favorite in the field of seven two-year-old fillies, was one-and-three-quarters lengths back in second and returned $2.20 and $2.10.  The exacta paid $71.40.  It was another three-quarter length back to pacesetter Back to Class, who paid $6.20 to show.

“I just sat on the rail most of the way,” said winning jockey Angel Arroyo. “There was plenty of room for her around the turn so I just went with her. The instructions were to just sit and come with one run and that’s what I did. She finished up real strong.”

The Nancy Shuford homebred scored her first stakes victory and second win in four starts by taking the Sorority. She has now earned $98,550 for her connections.


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