Arlington Million

Rahystrada Wins Grade III Arlington 'Cap for Second Time

| Churchill Downs Communications | 07/26/2012 #
  • Robert Courtney Jr.'s Rahystrada picks up his second Arlington Handicap win in three years. Photo by Four Footed Fotos

Robert Courtney Jr.'s 2010 Grade III Arlington Handicap winner Rahystrada returned to Arlington Park to capture the 2012 edition of the $200,000 turf race in wire-to-wire fashion under jockey Joel Rosario. The Scooter Hughes-trained son of Rahy went the mile and a quarter over "good" turf in 2:01.84.

"It's a great feeling (to win this race again after two years)," said Courtney. "He's been a wonderful horse. Who would imagine an 8-year-old gelding coming back and winning this for the second time?"

"They told me there wasn't a whole lot of speed in the race," Rosario said of his surprising front-running tactics with Rahystrada. "I sent him out of there and tried to hold my position. He likes to run close to the pace. He took the bit on the backside and he was gone after that."

The 8-year-old gelding took the field through fractions of 24.15 seconds, 48.51 seconds, 1:13.19 and 1:38.11, and he had just enough in the tank to hold off the late run from favored Boisterous.

"He came running but he just got beat," said Boisterous's rider Alan Garcia, who then quipped, "I couldn't explain to the horse he had to get there sooner."

Millionaire Rahystrada added $115,200 to his career earnings which now stand at $1,115,700 while his record improved to 13 wins from 38 starts.

Rahystrada, Boisterous and third-place finisher Mister Marti Gras will have their entry and start fees waived for the Grade I Arlington Million should any of them start in that race next month. Rahystrada finished fourth and fifth in his two tries at the Arlington Million.

Vertiformer, Cherokee Lord, Sky Blazer, Nikki's Sandcastle, Proceed Bee and Mavericking completed the order of finish.

Rahystrada paid $10.60, $4.60, $3.20. Boisterous returned $3.20 and $2.20. Mister Marti Gras paid $3.20.