In a thrilling finish, Isa Firecracker with Alejandro Gomez aboard won by a nose over the favorite, Grand Prix ridden by Kyle Frey, to capture the $ 50,000 Golden Gate Debutante stakes race at Golden Gate Fields on Friday.
Isa Firecracker, trained by Thomas Jamey, pressed the pace to the turn and went determinedly to the line. The six furlong race for two year old fillies was completed in 1:10.21. Zensational Dancer was sent out early for the speed, but was caught promptly in the stretch, setting up the duel between Isa Firecracker and Grand Prix. Jerry Hollendorfer’s Americana got started late and though willing to the end, was unable to get there in time, settling for third. Isa Firecracker was three-to-one at the start of todays race and paid $ 8.20.
“I had a lot of horse left and knew we were going to finish pretty strong. This is a good horse, a good fighter, and it never gave up,” said Alejandro Gomez.
Kyle Frey, who rode the runner up, wished he had a few more feet, but was happy with the way the horse handled.
”We broke a little quicker than I was hoping so I was up in all the commotion and I couldn’t really get back and around and outside. So I tried to force in there, but couldn’t really get to the spot to split them. We shot in at the top of the stretch and one more jump and we would have had them,” said Frey.
It was Jamey Thomas’ first stakes win as a trainer and the first horse Myles McMahon has bred in his 12 years as a horse owner.
“You know she is not a big horse. She doesn’t have the biggest stride, but she has a big heart and she tries. The first time she ran she was stuck down on the rail, was in the one hole, but she overcame that too. And ran great,” said Thomas.
Thomas isn’t sure if he will stretch her out in her next race, but hell definitely be keeping her at Golden Gate Fields where he feels she skips around nicely on the track.
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