Lightly raced Maleeh ran like a seasoned professional in his
second start, saving ground on the turn and angling off the rail to
launch his stretch
run en route to a 2 ¾-length win in Saturday’s $100,000 Fred “Cappy”
Capossela, a six-furlong sprint for 3-year-olds at Aqueduct Racetrack.
Breaking from the rail, Maleeh raced behind a wall of opponents
in fifth through an opening quarter-mile in 22.92 seconds as Whiskey
Romeo and odds-on Clawback battled
for early supremacy. Eddie Castro put Maleeh to a drive at the quarter
pole, then took him outside Whiskey Romeo and Clawback with
three-sixteenths to travel.
With clear running room, Maleeh shot past the leaders and ran
away to a decisive score. Tenango, a 57-1 long shot, overcame a tardy
start to nab second by a head from
“I stuck behind the speed – third, fourth, close to the pace,”
said Castro. “My horse drifted a little inside, I had to check. When he
ran the first time, he did the
same thing. In the stretch, I hit him left-handed and he came with a
nice kick. He’s impressive, a really nice horse.”
Off as the 5-1 fourth choice, Maleeh paid $13.40 for a $2 win wager. He completed the distance in 1:10.43.
“I was a little worried about the rail [post], watching the
races all day today,” said Art Magnuson, assistant to winning trainer
Kiaran McLaughlin. “He stepped it up.
It was a tough race, and you don’t know until you try. We were in a
very good spot. I was only worried about how much horse [Eddie Castro]
had under him, but I liked where we were.”
Maleeh employed a similar running style in his only other start,
stalking the pace and running down the pacesetter late to take a maiden
special weight by a half-length
on January 6 at Aqueduct.
Owned by Shadwell Stable, Maleeh is by Indian Charlie and out of top sprinter Gold Mover. The bay colt was bred in
Virginia by Edward P. Evans.
Magnuson said Maleeh likely will remain in sprints for the time being.
Silver Morgan finished fourth, followed by Weekend Hideaway, Whiskey Romeo, and Rubysandpearls.