Celtic Chaos scores second John Morrissey win by a nose

NYRA Press Office
August 04, 2019 03:33pm
Celtic Chaos scores second John Morrissey win by a nose
Zilla Racing Stables' Celtic Chaos made a sweeping move at the top of the stretch and got his nose on the wire in time to best Build to Suit in Sunday's $100,000 John Morrissey for New York-breds going 6 ½ furlongs over the Saratoga Race Course main track.

Celtic Chaos, who also won the 2017 Morrissey, sat off the pace while Gold for the King led the six-horse field in an opening quarter-mile of 22.79 seconds and a half-mile in 45.70.

Jockey Dylan Davis angled Celtic Chaos four wide and made his bid at the top of the stretch, taking command at the eighth-pole. A surging Build to Suit, rallying from last of six under Manny Franco, ranged menacingly inside his rival as the two battled out the final jumps, with Celtic Chaos taking the photo finish by a nose. Celtic Chaos stopped the clock in 1:15.45. 

Gold for the King, T Loves a Fight, Eye Luv Lulu and Saratoga Giro rounded out the order of finish. Vincento was scratched.
The 6-year-old chestnut son of Dublin built off of a victory against open company on May 31 at Belmont Park, where he registered a 100 Beyer Speed Figure for trainer Brad Cox.

The win was a fourth stakes victory this summer at Saratoga for Cox, who is now tied with Chad Brown for most stakes wins at the meet. Cox has been synonymous with winning photo finishes in stakes races this weekend. On Saturday, he sent Beau Recall to Del Mar for the Grade 2 Yellow Ribbon, who also won her race by a nose.

"I honestly didn't think he got there, but with a photo, you've got a shot, and then they put his number up," Cox said. "It was good. Dylan did a great job riding him. He put him in a great position. He's put him up in the race a little closer the last couple races and it's worked out really well. I'm very proud of him."

Davis said he didn't think Celtic Chaos had won the photo but was delighted when the horse's number was put up.

"He broke a lot sharper than usual and I just wanted to get him in good rhythm," Davis said. "He wanted to get running, so I took a shot going outside and he got it done. He dug in when Franco came up on the inside and he really fought to the wire. I thought I was on the losing side, but he got the head bob."

Celtic Chaos won the 2017 renewal of the Morrissey while under the care of trainer Kiaran McLaughlin. He was third in last year's Morrissey behind Weekend Hideaway.

Returning $13.20 for a $2 win bet, Celtic Chaos took home the winner's share of $55,000 from the win. His career bankroll improved to $659,947.

The Morrissey was the third career stakes win for Celtic Chaos, bred by Spendthrift Farm, who also captured the Affirmed Success at Belmont Park in 2017. A veteran of 35 starts, his record now stands at 9-5-8.


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