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Saratoga and Del Mar 2017
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Majesticperfection Sharp in Vanderbilt

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Majesticperfection passed his first Grade 1 test with flying colors, wiring the field in Sunday’s $250,000 Alfred G. Vanderbilt Handicap at Saratoga Race Course, his first start in graded company.

 

The 4-year-old son of Harlan’s Holiday vaulted out of the gate and dictated a swift pace, leading the field through a quarter in 22.80 and a half-mile in 45.60. Never seriously threatened, he crossed the wire 2 ¾ lengths in front under a hand ride for his fifth straight win.

 

His final time for the six furlongs was 1:08.63.

 

“He broke really smart and sharp, and he really made my job a lot easier,” said jockey Shaun Bridgmohan. “He’s a pretty quick horse and really professional. Once he got there, he felt really comfortable and we got away with some nice fractions. I knew before the Prairie Meadows race [Iowa Sprint Handicap] that he was the real deal. I’ve known it since the first time I rode him.”

 

Owned by Satish Sanan’s Padua Stables, Majesticperfection made the first start of his career in January, finishing third in a maiden race at Fair Grounds in the mud. He caught a fast track at the Louisiana oval to break his maiden at second asking on February 14, then took a pair of allowances at Oaklawn Park and Churchill Downs before winning the Iowa Sprint Handicap at Prairie Meadows on June 25.

 

“He’s been very fast, he’s a very good horse, and I’m very proud that he ran this race on this level,” said trainer Steve Asmussen. “We could all read how well he’d run in the other spots, but for him to bring it up against this level of competition, it puts him exactly where we want him to be. He had his chance to show who he is, and he got it done, so it was beautiful.”

 

The even-money favorite in the field of seven, which included millionaire graded stakes winners Big Drama (second), Bribon (third) and Gayego (fourth), Majesticperfection returned $4.00 and nearly doubled his own earnings to $310,430. With the Vanderbilt win, his record stands at 5-0-1 from six starts. Temecula Creek, Mambo Meister and Smokey Fire completed the order of finish in the Vanderbilt.

 

“I think he beat a very good group, but we’ve got to reproduce that performance again,” Asmussen said. “It’s very good to see how fast he ran at Churchill, and the fact that the Breeders’ Cup is there, and we’ll get with the Sanan family, but that has been our target with him for a little while.”

 

Though he did not outline a firm plan for the colt, Asmussen said that the Grade 1, $350,000 Vosburgh at Belmont Park on October 2 would likely be his next and final start before the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Sprint on November 7.

 

 

 

 

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