sat the garden spot trip behind swift splits and captured Saturday's Westchester Stakes from Belmont Park.
The pace was surprisingly strong in the 5-horse field with Christmas For Liam taking it to Haynesfield through fractions of :22.34, :44.72, and 1:08.89.
Caixa Electronica was poised to strike from 3rd and edged clear in the stretch to win by 2-3/4 lengths. The Todd Pletcher trainee, owned by Mike Repole and ridden by Cornelio Velasquez, stopped the clock in 1:34.26 and paid $22.
Convocation rallied wide to land the place and Schoolyard Dreams was up late to snatch the show away from Haynesfield. Christmas For Liam weakened to last and Soaring Empire scratched.
WESTCHESTER (G3) QUOTES
Jonathan Thomas, assistant to winning
trainer Todd Pletcher, of Caixa Eletronica (No. 2): “Regardless
of the pace scenario, we felt if he just sat and made one run it was going to
be conducive to his racing style. You would have to consider the Met Mile
[Grade 1, May 30, Belmont
Park]. He’s a real
generous horse and it seems like you can do whatever you need to do with him.
Cornelio gave him a great ride and he ran beautifully.”
Cornelio Velasquez, winning jockey
aboard Caixa Eletronica (No. 2): “I had a good trip.
My horse broke on the lead, but the number six [Christmas for Liam] went out to
the lead and I stayed behind the speed. I had a lot of horse – the last
three-sixteenths, when I asked him I had a lot of horse. This horse has changed
a lot, he’s a very nice horse.”
Ramon Dominguez, jockey aboard beaten
favorite and fourth-place finisher Haynesfield (No. 5):
“We just had an awful set-up. My horse broke sharply, but the horse on
the outside [Christmas for Liam] had more speed. I was doing everything under
my full power when I realized I couldn’t match strides with the horse on
the outside. I wasn’t able to get him back as he was too fresh.”