Michael Lay, Mike Loughry, and D Mac Racing Stable’s Puntrooskie earned his first graded stakes victory in Saturday’s Grade 3 Bold Venture Stakes at Woodbine Race Course, crossing the wire a half-length ahead of his competition. The 5-year-old son of In Summation covered 6 1/2 furlongs over the fast Tapeta in 1:16.06 under Patrick Husbands for trainer Don MacRae.
Race-favorite Noholdingback Bear broke sharply but was immediately challenged by Choctaw Chuck for the lead, trading positions throughout the first quarter while maintaining a half-length distance between the two. At the quarter-mile mark it was Noholdingback Bear in the lead by a half-length, stopping the clock in :23.18. Choctaw Chuck raced alongside him, with Puntrooskie three-wide along the outside of those two. Nearing the half-mile mark, Noholdingback Bear still held a half-length advantage but it was Puntrooskie taking up the challenge along his outside.
Noholdingback Bear and Puntrooskie turned for home together and traveled stride for stride nearly the length of the stretch. It was just in the final sixteenth of a mile that Puntrooskie was able to pull away, crossing the wire about a half-length in front of Noholdingback Bear. Calgary Cat was several lengths back in third, and Western Elegance finished fourth.
Bred in Florida by John David O’Farrell, J. Michael O’Farrell, Jr., and Our Sugar Bear Stable, Puntrooskie was a $ 62,000 Ocala Breeders’ Sale 2-year-old in training purchase. His career record now stands at 5-6-5 from 29 starts, with earnings of $ 380,000.
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