HOT SPRINGS, AR – The two Grade 1 winners and top-two betting favorites finished as expected with 4-5 choice Tom’s d’Etat prevailing by three-quarters of a length over Improbable in Saturday’s $150,000 Oaklawn Mile.
Ridden by Joel Rosario, Tom’s d’Etat settled well off the pace early as Pioneer Spirit took the field through early fractions :22 4/5 and 46 for the first half mile with several rivals in hot pursuit. The winner came five wide into the stretch and once he had his target in site, was able to run down Improbable for the victory, while covering the mile distance in 1:35 4/5 over a wet fast track. Bankit closed from last to get third.
“Now that we’re talking post-race, I couldn’t be any more happy with exactly how it turned out,” trainer Al Stall Jr. said via phone. “The type of race he had, and the way Joel (Rosario) rode him to save a little bit to keep us on the upward part of the curve. That’s the hottest word in America right now. We don’t want to flatten the curve with this horse.”
Unraced since his victory in the Clark Handicap (G1) at Churchill Downs last November, Tom’s d’Etat improved his record to 10 wins from 17 career starts and now has earned $1,326,572 for owner G M B Racing. The 7-year-old Smart Strike horse returned $3.60, $2.80 and $2.40.
Tom’s d’Etat is a son of Smart Strike out of the Giant’s Causeway mare Julia Tuttle. The 7-year-old horse is one of three graded winners & four stakes winners by Smart Strike out of Giant’s Causeway mares that include G2 winner Family Tree (Smart Strike/Giant Mover).
There is no live racing Sunday at Oaklawn Park in observance of the Easter holiday. Live racing resumes Thursday with a 1 p.m. first post.
Edited Press Release
Photo: Tom’s d’Etat. Credit: Oaklawn Park