Rockingham Ranch and Gelfenstein Farm’s X Y JET returned to action on Saturday at Gulfstream Park with a 2 1/4-length score in the $272,500 Smile Sprint (G3).
Making his first start since a tough-luck head second in the Dubai Golden Shaheen (UAE-G1) at Meydan on March 31, the Jorge Navarro trainee took command from the start of the Smile Sprint and never looked back. Setting fractions of :22.16, :44.36 and :53.60, he finished six furlongs over the fast main track in 1:09.61 under jockey Emisael Jaramillo.
X Y Jet paid $3.20 as the 3-5 favorite and was followed by Reason to Soar. However, that runner was disqualified from second and placed fifth after swerving into the path of Splash Rules and causing that rival to clip heels.
The disqualification elevated Sweetontheladies from third to second, Petrov from fourth to third and Splash Rules from fifth to fourth. Mo Cash, Classic Rock and Mr. Jordan completed the order of finish.
X Y Jet increased his lifetime earnings to $1,558,663 and improved his career mark to read 10-7-2 from 22 starts. The six-year-old gelded son of Kantharos has undergone three knee surgeries thus far but that hasn’t slowed him down. Following his most recent vacation, a 13-month hiatus between November 2016 and December 2017, X Y Jet recorded three straight wins in the Mr. Prospector Stakes (G3), Sunshine Millions and Pelican Stakes.
A trip overseas for the Dubai Golden Shaheen came next, which snapped his three-race win streak, but the gelding returned to his scoring ways in this spot.
Bred in Florida by Didier Plasencia, X Y Jet is out of the Lost Soldier mare Solidersingsblues, making him a half-brother to stakes-placed Woman Soldier, and comes from an Argentinean black-type rich female family.
SMILE SPRINT QUOTES
Jorge Navarro, trainer X Y Jet, winner
On being visibly emotional In the winner’s circle
“Every time he runs he does that to me. He’s had three surgeries, what he’s done, what he’s accomplished, people still count him out. What does he have to accomplish for people to see that he’s the real deal? He might not be the top sprinter, but he’s the real deal. He shows up every time.
“On paper he was the best, but you know what? Coming to South Florida, this heat, it will get to you. I guess he was ready.
“Nothing’s bugging him right now. Our main focus is to keep him clean. Maybe the (Frank DeFrancis) Dash at Laurel, that’s a maybe, and then the Breeders’ Cup (Sprint [G1]) – just one more race before the Breeders’ Cup.”
Emisael Jaramillo, jockey X Y Jet, winner
“I’m very grateful to Jorge Navarro for giving me this great horse to ride. He’s a horse that can beat any type of race horse, he’s just wonderful. I know him very well and feel comfortable riding him, so I’m very happy to be able to ride him and have so many victories with him.”
A trio of contests kicked off the stakes action earlier on Gulfstream’s Saturday card.
JAL Racing’s ALTER MOON romped by five lengths under jockey Edgard Zayas in the $75,000 Azalea Stakes, finishing seven furlongs on the wet-fast dirt for trainer Jose Velez in 1:23.35.
Matties Racing Stable LLC and Averill Racing LLC’s PAY ANY PRICE successfully defended his title in the $92,500 Bob Umphrey Turf Sprint by 1 1/4 lengths as the 2-5 favorite. Zayas earned a second straight stakes win guiding the Ralph Ziadie-trained eight-year-old through five furlongs on the good turf in :58.29.
Co-owner Rich Averill indicated Pay Any Price will receive a break now, saying, “He has special shoes, so they’ll pull his shoes and put on a regular shoe and let his feet grow. We’re just going to run down here in an overnight stakes or a starter, and hopefully, he does enough in everyone’s eyes to give him a shot in the Breeders’ Cup (Turf Sprint [G1] at Churchill Downs on November 3).”
Wilfredo Agusti Jr.’s WAR GIANT made his stakes debut in the $75,000 Carry Back Stakes with Jaramillo aboard and wired the seven-furlong dirt test by 5 3/4 lengths for trainer Oscar Gonzalez in a final time of 1:22.85.