Wild Shot picked up his second career victory in style Saturday afternoon, winning the Grade 3 Pat Day Mile by daylight under jockey Corey Lanerie. The Calumet Farm homebred stalked rapid early fractions over the muddy surface and made his move coming out of the final turn against rival Uncontested, drawing away solidly in the stretch.
George “Rusty” Arnold trains the son of Trappe Shot, who was on the Kentucky Derby trail earlier this year, finishing behind the likes of Irap, Tapwrit, and McCraken. He came to the Pat Day with a maiden win, a second in the G2 Kentucky Jockey Club, and a third in the G2 Tampa Bay Derby.
Wild Shot is out of Storm Cat mare Ranter and went off at odds of 8-1.
No Dozing was second, followed by Uncontested. The final time was 1:35.67.
Calumet will send three horses out in this afternoon’s Kentucky Derby: Hence, Sonneteer, and Patch.
Pat Day Mile Quotes, courtesy of Churchill Downs media office
Corey Lanerie (rider of Wild Shot, winner) – “I didn’t know where I was going to be the first quarter. I went in with the mind-set to let my horse run his race. I just patiently let him do what he wanted to do. It was a dream ride. When I called on him (at the top of the stretch), he had plenty left.”
Rusty Arnold (trainer of Wild Shot, winner) – “I didn’t know we had it but when he got about three in front at the eighth pole I felt pretty good. We think this is what he wanted to do – a one-turn mile – and it worked out. I didn’t like 44 and change until they kept going but it worked out great. We tried the Derby trail and we just didn’t like the two turns so we backed him up. His last work was brilliant and he’d done really well. He’s a handful, as you noticed in the paddock. He’d been over here every day this week and got better each time. We thought he’d like the slop. We weren’t sure but we thought he would. They went so much faster than I thought they would but you just don’t know on a sloppy track. He kept going and he’d run so fast the horses that chased him tired also. This horse probably will go to New York for the Woody Stephens on Belmont Day. It’s a Grade 1 going seven eighths.”
Joel Rosario (rider of No Dozing, runner-up) – “A good race for him. He ran well. The winner was best today.”
Mike Smith (rider of Uncontested, third-place finisher) – “I’m just going to take a guess here that I think he might be a late running sprinter. When they go long like this, he outruns them because he’s got natural speed. But if you put him in a short race, I think he will come running at the end.”
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