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Stallwalkin’ Dude Shows Grit in $110,000 Rapid Transit; Runs With Bulls Extends Win Streak to Three in $110,000 Iron Horse; Successful Native Pulls Upset in $110,000 Canterbury

Dec 5, 2015
HALLANDALE BEACH, FL – Compromised by traffic trouble in his previous two starts, Grade 1-placed Stallwalkin’ Dude got a dream trip and outran favored Grade 3 winner Trouble Kid late to capture the $110,000 Rapid Transit by a neck Saturday at Gulfstream Park.

The seven-furlong Rapid Transit for 3-year-olds and up was the fourth of nine starter stakes on the 17th $1.1 million Claiming Crown program that highlighted opening day of the 2015-16 Championship Meet.

Owned and trained by David Jacobson, the 5-year-old Florida-bred gelding has now won nine of 21 starts with four seconds, three thirds and purse earnings of $609,650 since being claimed for $16,000 last September at Gulfstream.

It was the second win of the day for Javier Castellano, the four-time defending Championship Meet leading rider who two races earlier took the $110,000 Iron Horse with Runs With Bulls.

“You can see what he’s done for Mr. Jacobson,” said Gulfstream-based trainer John Assimakopolous, who saddled Stallwalkin’ Dude and is overseeing New York-based Jacobson’s South Florida string. “Mr. Jacobson has done an incredible job. He’s a special horse. It was a great ride by Javier.”

Breaking from post 7, Stallwalkin’ Dude ($6.40) raced alongside pacesetter Newfound Gold through a quarter-mile in 22.39 seconds before assuming the lead and taking the field through a half in 44.91 and six furlongs in 1:09.06. 

Trouble Kid, disqualified from first for interference in the De Francis Memorial Dash last time out, tracked Stallwalkin’ Dude and stuck to his outside as Castellano moved to the front. The top two betting choices dueled the length of the stretch while opening up on their rivals, until Stallwalkin’ Dude gave one final surge to get up at the wire and improve to five-for-seven lifetime over an off track.

Stallwalkin’ Dude, the 2-1 second choice, ran seven furlongs in 1:22.34 on a sealed main track labeled good. Trouble Kid was 3 ¾ lengths ahead of Rockinn On Bye in third, followed by Grande Shores, One More Night, Classic Salsa, Old Times Sake, Ledokol, Gryvon, Newfound Gold and Tricky Call.

Disqualified from third to fourth in last year’s Rapid Transit, Stallwalkin’ Dude was fourth after being bumped repeatedly in the De Francis Dash and eighth when shuffled back in the Breeders’ Cup Sprint (G1) in his previous two starts. He finished third, beaten a neck, in the Vosburgh (G1) Sept.26. Each of those races came at six furlongs.

“I thought Trouble Kid was going to be on the pace. I don’t know for what reason he didn’t break,” Castellano said. “My horse beat the gate and he put me in good position. I rode with a lot of confidence because I think he likes the sloppy track. It set up perfect the way he did it. My horse is a game horse. When he saw the other horse, he went back running again. He never gave up.”

Runs With Bulls Extends Win Streak to Three in $110,000 Iron Horse

Given a perfectly timed move by Castellano, Loooch Racing Stables’ Florida-bred Runs With Bulls ran his win streak to three races with a three-quarter length victory in the Iron Horse.

Making his first start since being transferred to trainer Peter Walder, Runs With Bulls ($11.20) sat in a stalking spot on the outside while 50-1 long shot Palatine Hill led through a quarter-mile in 23.50 seconds and a half in 46.94. Twocubanbrothersu, the 6-5 favorite, moved effortlessly to the lead around the far turn as Castellano steered Runs With Bulls to the inside for a sustained drive to the wire.

Twocubanbrothersu held on for second, a nose ahead of Roll On the Navajo. Winning time for 1 1/16 miles was 1:43.63. It was the first win of the meet for Castellano, who led the standings in 2014-15 with 114 victories.

“I was right where I wanted to be. The way I handicapped the race, there was a lot of speed and it set up for my horse,” he said. “I never rode the horse, but I followed the direction of the trainer. He gave me the key to win the race. He was on the outside down the backside and cut the corner turning for home. I’m very satisfied the way he did it.”

Successful Native Pulls Upset in $110,000 Canterbury 

Favored in each of his past three races, Marco Thoroughbred Corp.’s Successful Native took the lead past the eighth pole and pulled away to upset 9-5 top choice Delta Bluesman in the $110,000 Canterbury.

Trained by Aubrey Maragh and ridden by Juan Leyva, Successful Native ran five furlongs in 57.09 seconds. It was the 4-year-old colt’s first try over the main track after the race was rained off the turf course.

A 4-year-old son of Successful Appeal, Successful Native has now won three of five starts since being claimed for $25,000 in April at Gulfstream, including the Turf Sprint Stakes July 5. He paid $25.20.

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