Terry Hamilton’s Hammers Vision caught front-running J S Bach approaching the eighth pole and edged clear to win Friday’s featured fourth race, a third-level optional claiming allowance for 4-year-olds and up.
Sent off as the even-money favorite in a field of six for his 4-year-old debut, Hammers Vision ($4) ran six furlongs in 1:10.65 over a fast main track. J S Bach stayed up for second, 1 ¾ lengths ahead of Izzy the Warrior.
It was the first win since being gelded for Hammers Vision, off the board in back-to-back stakes to cap sophomore year after beating older horses in an off-the-turf allowance sprint last summer at Saratoga. At 2, he was third behind 2016 Preakness (G1) winner Exaggerator in the Saratoga Special (G2).
“He had run some good races on an off track; it was good to see him run on just the regular dirt on a sunny day,” trainer Brian Lynch said. “It looked like an ideal spot. We gelded him and gave him a little bit of time. He looked like he was a bit tired toward the end of the season last year so we just freshened him up and hoped he’d show up like he did today.”
Super Hi-5 Hit for $60,677 in Friday Finale
Amaty Racing Stables’ Getaway Car ($50.60) took Friday’s 11th race finale at odds of 24-1 under jockey Roberto Alvarado Jr. to key a $60,677.60 payoff in the $1 Super Hi-5.
The winning combination was 2-5-12-3-8.
Who’s Hot: Meet-leading rider Luis Saez had three more winners Friday with Dubai Bob ($4.80) in the second race, Bar Down ($8.60) in the sixth and Bow Tie Affair ($8.40) in the eighth. Five-time defending champion Javier Castellano had a riding double aboard Dancin in the Heat ($3.40) in the first and Lady Devil ($7) in the fifth.
Guaranteed Pools in Pick 4, Pick 5, Rainbow 6 for Saturday
A trio of graded stakes worth $850,000 in purses highlight guaranteed pools in the 50-cent Late Pick 4, 50-cent Late Pick 5 and 20-cent Rainbow 6 wagers on Saturday’s 12-race program.
First race post time is noon.
The Late Pick 4, which spans races 9-12, will be guaranteed at $300,000, while the Late Pick 5 (Races 8-12), offering an industry-low 12 percent takeout, will carry a $250,000 guarantee and the Rainbow 6 (Races 7-12) is guaranteed at $200,000.
Saturday’s featured race is the 31st running of the $350,000 Gulfstream Park Turf Handicap (G1) in Race 10. It is flanked by the 69th renewal of the $150,000 Suwannee River (G3) on grass in Race 9 and the 73rd running of the $350,000 Hardacre Mile Gulfstream Park Handicap (G2) in Race 11.
Source: Gulfstream Park