Gun Runner was assigned a preliminary Beyer Speed Figure of 110 (a career high) for his front-running 5 ¾-length victory in Monday’s $500,000 Razorback Handicap (G3) for older horses under Florent Geroux.
It was the fifth consecutive triple-digit Beyer Speed Figure for Gun Runner, who is co-owned by Winchell Thoroughbreds (Ron and Joan Winchell) and Three Chimneys Farm, where he will stand upon his retirement from racing. The son of Candy Ride was using the Razorback as a possible prep for the $10 million Dubai World Cup (G1) March 25 at Meydan Racecourse in the United Arab Emirates.
“It’s obviously one of the choices,” Ron Winchell said moments after the Razorback. “We’ll see how he comes out of this race.”
Gun Runner, who was making his 4-year-old debut, ran 1 1/16 miles over a fast track in 1:40.97. Lost Code set the stakes record (1:40.40) in 1988. Heatherten set the track record (1:40.20) in the $250,000 Apple Blossom Handicap (G1) for older fillies and mares in 1984.
Gun Runner’s mile split (1:34.83) was just off Whitebrush’s disputed track record (1:34.40), set in the $50,000 Southwest Handicap for 3-year-olds in 1984.
“I was just telling Ron, I don’t think you could have hoped for anything better than that or anything more than that,” said David Fiske, manager for Winchell Thoroughbreds. “The time was good and he acted good.”
Gun Runner bankrolled $300,000 to increase his earnings to $2,337,800 following his seventh victory in 13 lifetime starts. He was coming off a victory over older horses in the $500,000 Clark Handicap (G1) Nov. 25 at Churchill Downs.
Oaklawn increased the purse of the Razorback from $350,000 to a record $500,000 this year and moved the race up approximately a month to allow horses a chance to prep in Arkansas for the Dubai World Cup.
Source: Oaklawn Park