Jim Tafel’s favored Fast Alex
got Santa Super Saturday off to an auspicious start by responding to jockey
Robby Albarado’s urging with a nose victory in the 47th running of the
$75,000 Tenacious Handicap, but the 4-year old son of Afleet Alex had to repel a furious challenge by Terry Hamilton and Robert Morgan’s
Gleam of Hope along the rail.
Alex is a fighter,” said Albarado, a seven-time jockey champion at Fair
Grounds, after the race. “He never draws away to win easy but
he knows where the wire is. He’s a cool horse to ride.”
winner paid $5.20, $2.80 and $2.40, toured the distance in 1:45.31 and
increased his career earnings to $150,605 with his fourth win in
13 lifetime starts.
“He just loves it here,” said winning trainer
Greg Geier. “He’s always trained good here and he just does everything good here. It’s amazing.”
Gleam of Hope returned $3.80 and $3.40 to place, while Bob Gray Racing’s
Prospect Knight paid $4.40 to show while more than 15 lengths behind the top two. The Estate of Oliver Pierce’s
Sweetsouthernmoon made the pace with splits of 24.52 and 48.76 before tiring to fifth.