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Girolamo Successful in Vosburgh

Girolamo earned his first career Grade 1 victory in just his second start of the year, pulling clear through the stretch to take the 71st running of Saturday’s $350,000 Vosburgh Invitational at Belmont Park by 2 ½ lengths over Riley Tucker.


The 4-year-old A.P. Indy colt, sent off as the 2-1 favorite, broke alertly, and after checking briefly moved up to race between Snapshot and Wall Street Wonder as the latter led the field of nine through an opening quarter-mile in 22.56. Poking his nose in front as the half went in 45.26, Girolamo turned back a late challenge from Riley Tucker to emerge with a clear lead in midstretch and edged clear to hit the wire in 1:09.41.


“Toward the end of the race he was in hand and just cruising,” said winning jockey Alan Garcia. “In the end he showed his class and won the race. It was nice to get back on him.”


Now 5-0-0 from nine starts for Godolphin Stable, Girolamo was fifth in the Grade 1 Forego at Saratoga Race Course on September 4 in his only other start of the year.


“He was left in training to win a Grade 1 and we really had this race marked from the early summer,” said Rick Mettee, assistant to Godolphin trainer Saeed bin Suroor. “He was spot on from a fitness standpoint today and when that horse [Riley Ticker] challenged him in midstretch, he didn’t hang like he did in the Forego.”


Closing fastest of all to finish third, a half-length behind Riley Tucker, was Wildcat Brief, who was followed in turn by Temecula Creek, Driven by Success, Latigo Shore, Golden Spikes, Wall Street Wonder, and Snapshot.


Girolamo, who was 2-for-2 last fall at Belmont including a victory in the Grade 2 Jerome, won $180,000 for the victory to lift his earnings to $388,800. He returned $6.20 for a $2 win bet.


Last in the 2009 Breeders’ Cup Classic over an artificial surface, Girolamo may have earned a return trip to the Breeders’ Cup for either the Sprint or the Dirt Mile  at Churchill Downs on November 6 with the victory.


“We have multiple horses for the Breeders’ Cup [Dirt] Mile, so a lot depends on what Regal Ransom does tomorrow [in the Kelso],” said Mettee. “He’s still a lightly raced horse for the most part and there’s no reason he can’t come on and improve.”




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