Honorable Dillon got up late to get victory in the Grade II Hutcheson Stakes at Gulfstream Park.
Honorable Dillon, the 5-2 second betting choice in a field of eight, stalked the early pace set by Singanothersong and pressed by Undrafted along the backstretch. When the pacesetter tired on the far turn, Undrafted moved to the lead with Honorable Dillon right over his shoulder, setting up a heated stretch duel.
Honorable Dillon edged away from Undrafted nearing the finish line just in time, as Forty Tales, the 9-5 favorite under John Velazquez, moved late to nose out Undrafted. Honorable Dillon raced greenly in the stretch, gawking around.
Forty Tales, who had won his first two lifetime starts, didn’t level off after breaking from the inside until getting to the outside in the stretch.
Honorable Dillon ran seven furlongs in 1:22.53 to earn $90,000 for owner Joseph Bucci with his first stakes win and second victory in four lifetime starts. Kenneally said he’d talk with the owner to come up with a plan for the gray son of Tapit.
The race does not qualify for Kentucky Derby points.
The winner is out of Shy Greeting, by Shy Tom, and was bred in Kentucky by Robert B. Trussell, Jr. He was a $100,000 RNA at the Keeneland September 2011 Yearling Sale, then sold for $100,000 at the Fasig-Tipton Florida 2-Year-Olds in Training Sale.
<a href="http://www.equibase.com/static/chart/pdf/GP020213USA10.pdf" id="link" target="_blank"><font color="#ff0000">Equibase chart</font></a></span></span><br /><br /><br>
Eddie Kenneally: “It set up good. I thought he’d relax behind the pace. I thought there’d be some speed in the race, and there was. He relaxed beautifully and stalked on the outside and really dug in. He was a little green and was on the wrong lead in the stretch, but he gutted it out. He’s determined. He’s a nice horse. It’s a shame that these grade 2 stakes aren’t getting any points for the Kentucky Derby. I think it’s wrong. We may try (to stretch him out). We’d like to try at some point. He’s bred to go farther than seven eighths of a mile. Can he do it? We’ll find out when we try.”
Joe Rocco: “The plan was to stalk the speed and not get too far back, not get in a speed duel, and it worked out how we wanted."
Todd Pletcher, trainer of Forty Tales: “It was a difficult post going seven-eighths for a horse to make one run, but in spite of all that, he ran a great race and ate a lot of dirt. He finally got out at the top of the stretch and closed really well, just ran out of real estate.”
Edited Gulfstream Park release with additional content by Dick Downey
Courtney Heeney Photo