Jim and Susan Hill’s Go Blue Or Go Home, with Luis Contreras aboard, wired his rivals in the Grade 2, $200,000 Highlander Stakes, Sunday at Woodbine, one of four stakes on the Queen’s Plate undercard.
Originally carded for the grass at six furlongs, the race was moved to the Polytrack because of the inclement weather. That certainly didn’t hurt Go Blue Or Go Home, who opened his 2013 season in style with an impressive victory in the Boyes Memorial at Presque Isle over its synthetic surface on June 10.
Go Blue Or Go Home, the 3-1 second choice, set all the fractions in the Highlander, a quarter in 22.08 and the half in 44.88, before being pressed in early stretch by stablemate and 2008 Canadian Horse of the Year Fatal Bullet.
But the four-year-old gelded son of Bluegrass Cat easily repulsed that challenge and widened to win by five and one-quarter lengths in 1:10.46. Longshot Super Chunky came late for second, necking Dan the Tin Man. Favoured Something Extra never really got into it, finishing seventh.
The result meant a great day for the Hills and trainer Reade Baker, who earlier on the card won the $200,000 Dance Smartly Stakes with Solid Appeal.
Go Blue Or Go Home has only had seven lifetime starts, now winning five of them, after not racing as a two-year-old. He’s also shown a proficiency for turf, winning three of his four outings.
Go Blue Or Go Home paid $8.80, $5.60 and $3.90, combining with Super Chunky ($16, $9.10) for a $182.40 (9-7) exactor. A 9-7-3 (Dan the Tin Man, $9.50) triactor returned $1,180.10 while a $1 Superfecta [9-7-3-6 (Fatal Bullet)] fashioned a huge $8,850.45 payout.?