Cool Arrow Scores Sharp Win in Sunday’s Opening Lead
Aug 2, 2020
Jockey Leonel Reyes Collects 2nd Stakes Victory of Weekend
HALLANDALE BEACH, FL
– My Purple Haze Stables’ Cool Arrow parlayed a perfect trip into a 4 ½-length victory in Sunday’s $60,000 Opening Lead at Gulfstream Park, providing jockey Leonel Reyes with his second stakes victory of the weekend.
Reyes, who guided Go Jo Jo Go to a 21-1 upset victory in Saturday’s $100,000 Florida Sire Stakes Desert Vixen, rated Cool Arrow a few lengths off pacesetter Running for Riz, who set fractions of 22.72 and 45.69 seconds while stalked by Royal Squeeze and Garter and Tie for the first half-mile. Reyes never had to leave the rail with the 9-5 favorite, who slipped inside a tiring Running for Riz and rolled to a comfortable triumph in the six-furlong overnight stakes for 3-year-olds and up.
“It was easy. He’s a nice horse. The trainer said get good position and when I was able to get good position into the stretch, I knew we’d win,” said Reyes, a prominent jockey in Venezuela before venturing to South Florida in 2016.
Terri Pompay-trained Cool Arrow, who was coming off an impressive optional claiming allowance in his most recent start, ran six furlongs in 1:09.77 over a sloppy track to win his first stakes in 16 races since capturing the 2017 Robert Hilton Memorial at Charles Town. The 6-year-old son of Into Mischief also captured the 2016 Springboard Mile at Remington Park to close out his juvenile season.
Garter and Tie finished second, a length ahead of Royal Squeeze. Multiple graded-stakes winner Diamond Oops, the 6-5 morning-line favorite, was scratched by trainer Patrick Biancone.
Reyes, who also rode the winner of Sunday’s first race at Gulfstream, has continued to build momentum during Gulfstream Park’s Spring/Summer Meet. The 33-year-old journeyman missed several months of action after breaking his right wrist and his jaw in a mishap last fall at Gulfstream Park, where he was leading the jockey standings at the time.
“I feel good. I’m very happy,” Reyes said. “I think God, my family, the owners and trainers and my agent. This is an amazing meet.”
The Opening Lead is named after Brad and Shirley Gay’s homebred trained by Manny Azpurua. The son of Flush was a popular South Florida stakes competitor in the 1980s, winning Calder’s Carry Back Stakes and Broward Handicap, finishing third in Gulfstream’s Sprint Championship, and earning more than $300,000.