Carl Spackler had the bettors going for him in Friday’s $500,000 National Museum of Racing Hall of Fame (G2) at Saratoga. Which was nice.
Sent off as the 2-1 favorite in the one-mile grass test for three-year-olds, which was delayed one week due to inclement weather, the Chad Brown-trainee stormed past stablemate Appraise inside the final furlong to win by 2 1/4 lengths under Tyler Gaffalione. Appraise held on for second by a nose over second choice More Than Looks.
“You know, it really didn’t really go as planned,” Gaffalione said. “I wanted to be a lot closer to the pace, but coming out of the gate I actually lost my stirrup. My horse hit the gate pretty hard, but he settled real nice for me.”
Completing the order of finish were Ocean Vision, Behind Enemy Lines, Mischievous Angel, Mysterious Night, Bat Flip, and General Jim.
Owned by Bob Edwards’ e Five Racing Thoroughbreds, Carl Spackler completed the course in 1:36.29 over an inner turf rated good and paid $6.70.
The Hall of Fame result was a welcome form reversal for Carl Spackler, who was favored to win his stakes debut, the May 6 American Turf (G2) at Churchill Downs. However, after being in a threatening position at the quarter pole, Carl Spackler faded through the stretch and finished eighth in a field of 10.
Carl Spackler was the public choice in the American Turf after a sparkling late-February maiden win at Gulfstream, where he registered an 8 3/4-length triumph.
“Like I said before the race, after the race at Churchill I shipped him back home to Belmont and he just was not looking well,” Brown said. “He got sick on the trip. The last couple of weeks, his coat was shining, the horse had his energy back. His last two works were excellent. I felt even though it was off a layoff and it was a big race, he was ready to fire a big one.
“Appraise ran unbelievably [given] the fact that he got attacked early down the backside and had to take back after really using plenty of energy to make the front,” Brown added. “He came back and stormed to the front down the lane again. The margin of victory really shouldn’t have been that large given Appraise’s trip.”
Carl Spackler has now won two of four starts and has earned $336,000. Bred in Ireland by Edwards’ Fifth Avenue Bloodstock, Carl Spackler is by Lope de Vega and out of Grade 2 winner Zindaya, a More Than Ready half-sister to Grade 1 scorer Western Aristocrat.