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U.S. Invasion

Manndar continues American success story

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Posted: Saturday June 10, 2000 08:12 PM

NEW YORK (AP) -- Manndar scored the biggest win of his American tour on Saturday, taking the lead in the stretch and beating a strong field in the $400,000 Manhattan Handicap on the Belmont Stakes undercard.

The Irish-bred Manndar, sent to the United States eight months ago, has won two consecutive Grade I stakes and finished no worse than fourth in his six stakes races on American soil.

Owned by Columbine Stable, the 4-year-old Manndar took the lead from Yagli at the top of the stretch, and held off Boatman by one length in the 1 1/4-mile race on the inner turf course. Manndar, with Corey Nakatani aboard, returned $8, $4.70 and $3.70. The winner earned $240,000.

Boatman, ridden by Edgar Prado, paid $11.60 and $6.30. Spindrift, also an Irish-bred, returned $4.90 for third place. Time of the race was 1:59 3-5.

"When you've got the best horse, things tend to go right," Nakatani said. "He settled real nicely off the pace and ran when I asked him."

Yagli, one of four Grade I winners in the field of eight, crossed the finish line fourth but was disqualified and placed sixth for interfering with Honor Glide in the strech. Yagli, trained by Bill Mott, was trying to give jockey Jerry Bailey his fifth straight winner on the card.

"He's just not the same Yagli as he was a year ago," Mott said of his 7-year-old horse who won this race last year. "He was up, he was willing. He just wasn't able to finish them off."

Middlesex Drive, who set the pace for most of the race, was moved up to fourth, followed by Honor Glide, Yagli, Just Listen and High-Rise.

Manndar won the Woodford Reserve Classic at Churchill Downs on May 6, the first win for new trainer C. Beau Greely. Before the Woodford, Manndar was fourth in the El Rincon Handicap and third in the San Gabriel, both at Santa Anita, this year.

In other races on the undercard:

  • Perfect Sting, the 3-5 favorite, stuck her nose in front of Ronda at the wire to take $175,000 Just A Game Breeders' Cup. The Frank Stronach-owned 4-year-old filly, who won for the eighth time in 12 starts since 1999, covered the mile on the inner turf in 1:34 2-5. Perfect Sting, with Bailey aboard, returned $3.30 on a $2 win ticket.
  • Trippi, making his first start since finishing 11th in the Kentucky Derby, dominated a strong field and won the dlrs 150,000 Riva Ridge by nine lengths over even-oney favorite Bevo. Trained by Todd Pletcher, Trippi won for the fifth time in six career starts. In giving Bailey his fourth straight win of the day, Trippi returned $6.20 and covered the seven furlongs in 1:23 3-5.
  • Intidab came on strong in the stretch for a one-length victory over Brutally Frank in the $150,000 True North Handicap. Ridden by Robbie Davis, Intidab returned $6.60 and covered the six furlongs in 1:10 1-5.


     
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