HALLANDALE BEACH, FL – If there has been trouble in a race, Burn the Mortgage has been able to find it.
The Mike Maker-owned and –trained 5-year-old tried to get into trouble again in Saturday’s $75,000 Eight Miles East Stakes at Gulfstream Park, but jockey Edgard Zayas was prepared.
“Mike called my agent (Tito Fuentes) and said just to tell me to stay out of trouble,” said Zayas after guiding the son of Kitten’s Joy to a commanding 4 ½-length victory in the 1 1/16-mile stakes run over a yielding turf course.
Zayas did what he was told despite his mount’s efforts to lug in and guided Burn the Mortgage to a popular victory as the 8-5 favorite in a field of nine.
“The horse was trying to lug in a little bit all the way, but I was trying to stay out of trouble. That’s what he asked me to do, stay out of trouble, and I got a perfect trip,” said Gulfstream’s leading rider.
Burn the Mortgage, a beaten favorite last time out in a Mountaineer stakes in which he was steadied and lacked room while making his run, was reserved well off a hotly contested pace before being asking for his run while saving ground on the far turn. Lacking room along the rail Burn the Mortgage split horses and swung to the outside for the drive, drawing off to a convincing victory despite efforts to lug in through the stretch.
“The whole race set it up nice for him,” Zayas said.
Burn the Mortgage continued to show a fondness for the Gulfstream turf course, over which he has now won four of six starts. He ran 1 1/16 miles over the yielding course in 1:43.97 while winning his eighth race in 29 lifetime starts. Decisive Moment, who saved ground while stalking the pace under Santiago Gonzalez, finished second, a half-length ahead of Dustymour and jockey Jose Valdivia.