Tumbarumba Narrowly Prevails in G3 Fred W. Hooper
HALLANDALE BEACH, FL – Amerman Racing LLC’s Tumbarumba fought tenaciously to the finish of Saturday’s $150,000 Fred W. Hooper (G3) to prevail by a nose at Gulfstream Park.
The Fred W. Hooper, a mile stakes for 4-year-olds and up, was among four graded undercard stakes that supported the $3 million Pegasus World Cup Invitational (G1) presented by Baccarat, $1 million I/ST BET Pegasus World Cup Turf Invitational (G1) and $500,000 TAA Pegasus World Cup Filly & Mare Turf (G2).
Tumbarumba ($18.80) closely monitored a contested early pace set by favored Hejazi and pressed by Expressman into the stretch before rallying in the stretch to record his first graded-stakes victory, holding off a late bid by Castle Chaos. Steal Sunshine finished third.
Bob Baffert-trained Hejazi, who set or vied for the early pace past fractions of 23.53 and 45.69 seconds for the first half mile, faded to fourth.
Tumbarumba ran a one-turn mile in 1:36.45 to give trainer Brian Lynch his 15 winners half-way through a highly successful Championship Meet.
The late-developing 4-year-old gelded son of Oscar Performance won the Ellis Park Derby last August before finishing a close third in the Oklahoma Derby (G3) at Remington Park in September. He entered the Hooper off a second-place finish in the Louisiana Classic for state-breds at Fair Grounds Dec. 9.
Fred W. Hooper Quotes
Winning Trainer Brian Lynch (Tumbarumba): “It’s been a great meet so far, and particularly winning with him. He’s an Oscar Performance and he’s just a special horse to me.”
“I’ve always felt he’s better on the outside, so the outside draw was a good draw for him. He sort of got to stalk them, and he’s such a game horse when he can gets engaged in sort of a head bob. To run down [Bob] Baffert’s horse [Hejazi] as the chalk, that’s a thrill, too. All-around, just a neat, neat horse and I’m just so excited about him.”
“He’ll be pointed toward the Pat Day Mile on [Kentucky] Derby day. He’ll have another race here on Florida Derby day or Fountain of Youth day, I’m sure. He’s sort of showed that he’s a legit horse at the Grade 3 level so we’ll try to knock out another one.”