An impressive winner of his first two starts but only fifth in the Fountain of Youth (G2) when last seen in early March, Global Campaign got back to winning form Saturday with a 1 1/4-length score in the $291,000 Peter Pan (G3) at Belmont Park.
The 2-1 second choice in a field of five three-year-olds, Global Campaign rated in second behind pacesetter Federal Case, seized control on the far turn, opened up three lengths in mid-stretch, and had plenty left to fend off a late bid from 14-1 chance Sir Winston. Intrepid Heart, the 11-10 favorite, was a non-threatening third after stumbling at the break.
Owned by Sagamore Farm and WinStar Farm, Global Campaign finished up nine furlongs in a swift 1:46.71 over a fast track. Trained by Stanley Hough and ridden by Luis Saez, he paid $6.
“He missed some training after the Fountain of Youth, so (the distance) was a concern, but we did want to go one turn,” Hough said.
A son of Curlin, Global Campaign won his seven-furlong debut in January by 5 3/4 lengths, and then captured a 1 1/16-mile allowance by 2 1/4 lengths the following month. In the Fountain of Youth, he rated relatively close to a hot pace before weakening.
“He was good in his first couple of races and I thought he had an excuse in the Fountain of Youth, so we’ll see where he takes us,” Hough said.
Global Campaign is out of the A.P. Indy mare Globe Trot, making him a half-brother to multiple Grade 1 winner Bolt d’Oro and the multiple stakes-winning Sonic Mule. Also from this family is current Grade 3 sprinter Recruiting Ready.
Heavenhasmynikki, an Ohio-bred filly campaigned by Ron Paolucci, clung to victory by a neck over Pacific Gale in the $194,000 Vagrancy H. (G3) to kick off Saturday’s card. Finishing more than two lengths adrift in third was 6-5 favorite Separationofpowers, past winner of the Test (G1) and Frizette (G1).
Heavenhasmynikki cut out all the fractions, shook off Separationofpowers in upper stretch and opened up three lengths with a furlong to go, then held on in a time of 1:14.99 for 6 1/2 furlongs. Trained by Bob Hess and ridden by Kendrick Carmouche, she paid $10.40.
“The wire came up in time,” Hess said. “It was a maiden stakes win for me at Belmont. I’ve won stakes races at Aqueduct, but never here before. To win with Ron Paolucci makes it extra special.
“I felt she had a pace advantage here,” he added. “I felt we needed every bit of that. She’s a nice filly. I think she’s on the improve and hopefully we can run her in New York the rest of the year.”
This was the first graded win for the four-year-old daughter of Majestic Warrior, who has previously won state-bred stakes at Thistledown and Mahoning Valley. Her best prior finishes in open stakes company were thirds in the 2018 Davona Dale (G2) and in the Houston Ladies Classic (G3) on January 27.
One of the better one-turn specialists of his generation, Firenze Fire turned in a dominating performance in the $150,000 Runhappy, winning by 4 3/4 lengths over the slightly-favored Recruiting Ready.
Owned by Mr. Amore Stable, trained by Jason Servis, and ridden by Irad Ortiz Jr., Firenze Fire sped six furlongs in 1:08.12 and paid $5.80.
This was the third win in as many starts at Belmont for Firenze Fire, who captured the 2017 Champagne (G1) and 2018 Dwyer (G3) over the track. His other stakes wins include last year’s Gallant Bob (G3) at Parx and the $150,000 Jerome at Aqueduct. He kicked off his current campaign with a third-place effort in the Florida Cup Sprint at Tampa Bay Downs on March 31.