On Friday, some attractive fields were about to meet at the Keeneland Racecourse, especially in the G3 Transylvania Stakes. On the turf surface, Grand Sonata looked to be one of the leading victory candidates among three-year-olds; however, Sy Dog performed a superb finish from the rear to score his third win in a row. Three-year-old contestants also clashed in the Lafayette Stakes, where Old Homestead didn’t allow any of his rivals to get in front of him, and therefore, he won easily, while the favourites didn’t have a say here at all.
The first race we’re about to cover here was open to three-year-olds who met at the distance of seven furlongs. On the dirt surface, twelve participants competed for the purse of $400,000, but there was no fierce fight to be seen as Old Homestead (99-10) led from gate to the wire to win comfortably by three a ¾ lengths. As the Brett Brinkman bound colt cruised home in 1:22.98, Surfer Dude (71-5) finished second in front of Osbourne (51-2).
Neither of the horses travelling in the pack impacted the race as Old Homestead had a good start and charged for the front right away while the mentioned duo settled right behind him. Thomas Pompelli, aboard the subsequent victor, let his mount gallop as he needed, and once they turned for home, Old Homestead drew clear from Surfer Dude and affirmed that his previous victory among lesser competition could’ve been just the beginning of something bigger for this son of Overanalyze. Still, his Friday win wasn’t really expected as he bumped into a more serious competition this time, but he was too good for every single participant. Surfer Dude weakened in the final stretch and held on to the second place before Osbourne, who sentenced favourite My Prankster (7-5) into fourth place.
On the distance of a mile and a half of furlongs, six three-year-olds competed on the turf surface for the purse of $400,000, while Irad Ortiz jr. aboard Sy Dog (57-10) had everything under control throughout the whole G3 event. Galloping in the last position, he simply knew on what he was sitting, so as soon as the field hit the last turn, he urged his mount forward, and in the final stretch, Sy Dog gamely bettered all of his rivals and triumphed by ¾ of a length. Crossing the wire in 1:45.38, he left Grand Sonata (5-2) behind in second, while Coinage (51-10) had to settle for third.
For Sy Dog trained by Graham Motion, the Transylvania Stakes was an easy task as after bagging his maiden and a black-type victory, he also seemed to enjoy himself in this G3 race. He met with some exciting runners this time but suggested he could be useful even at the highest stages, given he achieved his Friday triumph with something definitely left in the tank. Grand Sonata delivered a good result as well when finishing at the fence to secure second place half of a length before Coinage, pursuing the leader consistently. Preferred Verbal (2-1) had no brighter moment here and tailed off home in fifth.
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