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General Perfect Surprises Silver Timber

Pasquale Vizzoni’s General Perfect grabbed the lead right out of the gate and led every step of the way to capture the $100,000 John McSorley Stakes as Moneigh Lisa won the $100,000 Spruce Fir Handicap at Monmouth Park on Sunday.

Trained by Frank Costa, General Perfect covered the about 5 ½ furlongs over firm turf in 1:01 2/5 and returned $25, $5.40 and $3.20 as he reported home a length and a half winner. Silver Timber, the odds-on favorite, rallied to complete the $60 exacta and paid $2.10 to place and $2.10 to show. It was 2 ½ lengths back to Just Playin Around, who returned $2.60 to show.

“My horse likes to run on the lead,” said winning jockey Pablo Fragoso. “I just wanted to break well and give him the opportunity to race on the lead. I had plenty of horse the whole way and I knew nobody was going to be able to run us down.”

A 7-year-old gelding by Perfect from the General Assembly mare General Tree, General Perfect now sports a record of 9-4-4 from 34 starts. He has earned $381,709 for his connections.

In the Spruce Fir Handicap, Rookie Thoroughbred Racing Stable’s Moneigh Lisa powered to an impressive 2 ¾ length score, going the mile and a 70 yards in 1:42 flat over the fast main track.

Moneigh Lisa returned $32.80, $12.40 and $4.60 across the board and topped a $223.20 exacta. Pacesetter Love That Dance held the place and paid $6.40 and $3.20. Post-time favorite Way With Words was another three-quarters of a length back in third, good for a $2.20 show mutuel.

“We thought if we’re going to stretch her out, let’s try her in a state-bred stakes and this race came up,” said winning trainer Jane Cibelli. “She certainly runs six furlongs like the added distance would be no problem, but of course you never know until you do it. Her mother could run long and this horse is going just terrific right now. Everything worked out great today.”

The Spruce Fir win was the fourth in 17 starts for Moneigh Lisa, a 4-year-old by Mo Mon from the Dove Hunt mare Dove Creek. Last out she was third in the Open Mind Handicap at six furlongs here on June 13. She’s now earned $220,332 for her connections.

Live racing returns to Monmouth Park on Friday, July 16 for a special twilight card. Gates open at 11:30 a.m. with first post set for 2:10 p.m. As always the track is open seven days a week for simulcasting from across the country and around the globe.



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