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Clarke on Fast Lane to Haskell

Saturday’s Pegasus Stakes brings out a half-dozen hopefuls for the Grade 1 Haskell Invitational on Sunday, July 31, including an interesting new name in Clarke Lane.


The colt by Giant’s Causeway is trained by Justin Sallusto, who saddled Teaks North to win last Sunday’s Monmouth Stakes (G3), and is owned in part by IEAH Stables, the folks who won the 2008 Haskell with Big Brown.


Clarke Lane, a Kentucky-bred, raced in England as a 2-year-old, and broke his maiden on turf at Haydock in May of 2010. He returned to the U.S. early this year, and made two starts in California. He closed stoutly to be beaten a neck in his American debut at Santa Anita on April 3, and last out overcame early trouble to finish third in the Alydar Stakes at Hollywood Park on May 8.


Nick Salusto, son of trainer Justin, is one of the advisors for IEAH Stables, and thought Monmouth was the right spot for Clarke Lane.


“It looked like he was a great fit for the 3-year-old stakes series at Monmouth,” Nick Salusto said, “and that’s why he’s here. The goal is the Haskell, of course.”


Clarke Lane impressed clockers with his only work over the Monmouth track, when he breezed seven furlongs from the gate in 1:27 flat last Saturday.


“He needed a work like that,” Justin Salusto said. “He worked very well over the track, and he galloped out strong. And he bounced right out of the work in great shape.


“I think this race could set up for him with all that speed. He will be formidable in there.”


Elvis Trujillo gets the riding call as Clarke Lane breaks from the rail in the mile and a sixteenth Pegasus.


The colt, who brought $190,000 at the Keeneland yearling sale in 2009, is owned by the partnership of  Pegasus Holdings Group and IEAH Stables.



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