Grade 1 winner Greenpointcrusader, who was last seen finishing seventh in the 2016 Louisiana Derby, returned to the races Friday and won the featured 10th race at Gulfstream Park, an allowance optional claimer at one mile.
Ridden by Hall of Famer John Velazquez, Greenpointcrusader won the race by 2 3/4 lengths over Flashy Jewel, the pacesetter, who was overtaken by the winner in the stretch.
Greenpointcrusader, the 6-5 favorite in the five-horse field, returned $ 4.40. He completed the distance in 1:36.02.
A 4-year-old son of Bernardini, Greenpointcrusader is owned by MeB Racing Stables LLC, Brooklyn Boyz Stables and St. Elias Stable. The colt was making his first start for trainer Todd Pletcher, who began training him about 2 1/2 months ago.
Pletcher said he has plenty of options with Greenpointcrusader, who won the 2015 Champagne Stakes (G1) around a one-turn mile at Belmont Park.
“I think the way he handled a mile today puts us in a position to do just about anything,” Pletcher said. “Ultimately, I think he will stretch out further, but he is also tactical enough that I think you could consider backing him up to seven-eighths.”
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