2023 Haskell Stakes Geaux Rocket Ride Upsets Mage

There was no doubt about the star performance on a stakes-heavy afternoon at Monmouth Park Racetrack on Saturday, as the progressive Geaux Rocket Ride threw down a gauntlet for divisional honors with a dominant defeat of Kentucky Derby winner Mage in the G1 Haskell. It was his first success at the top level. Here is the 2023 Haskell Stakes Recap.

Breeders Cup Odds

Haskell Stakes, G1, $1,000,000, 1m 1f dirt, 3yo

Rocket reaches for the stars

There’s a new name in the frame for divisional honors, as California shipper Geaux Rocket Ride blasted into the big time with an impressive victory in the Haskell at Monmouth Park on Saturday, shooting clear of Kentucky Derby winner Mage and warm favorite Arabian Knight to earn a free pass into the G1 Breeders’ Cup Classic.

The 12-1 sixth-choice was ignored by bettors but didn’t need their support, stalking the pace until surging past Arabian Knight on the turn. Second-choice Mage immediately threw down a challenge but Geaux Rocket Ride was just getting started and put him away without fuss, drawing off to win by a length and three-quarters. Mage stuck to his task well and came home two lengths clear of Arabian Knight in third.

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Geaux Rocket Ride wins the 2023 Haskell and earns a spot in the BC Classic #Horseracing #Horsesoftiktok #Horsetiktok #FYP #Sports #Horses

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“He took a breather and I thought ‘Oh, he’s going to run today’,” said veteran jockey Mike Smith, who won the first of his four Haskells back in 1994. “A mile and a quarter shouldn’t be a problem and he’s only going to get better.”

This was the first victory at the Graded level for Geaux Rocket Ride, who is now three-for-four and was runner-up in the G2 San Felipe in March on his stakes debut before illness took him off the Kentucky Derby trail. Trainer Richard Mandella will sidestep the G1 Travers at Saratoga Racecourse next month and point Geaux Rocket Ride toward the BC Classic at his home track Santa Anita Park on November 4; Mage remains on target for the Travers.

2023 Haskell Stakes Payouts

HorseWinPlaceShow
1. Geaux Rocket Ride27.409.404.80
2. Mage4.803.00
3. Arabian Knight2.80

Winning time: 1m 49.52s

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