Annex Surges to Victory in Saturday’s Palm Beach

February 27, 2021

HALLANDALE BEACH, FL – LNJ Thoroughbreds and Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners’ Annex rallied off a blistering early pace to capture the $100,000 Palm Beach Stakes Saturday at Gulfstream Park.

The Palm Beach, a 1 1/16-mile turf stakes for 3-year-olds, was one of nine stakes worth more than $1.4 million in purses on a 14-race program headlined by the $300,000 Fasig-Tipton Fountain of Youth (G2), a key prep for the $750,000 Curlin Florida Derby (G1) presented by Hill n’ Dale Farm at Xalapa March 27.

Annex, who was coming off a late-rallying debut victory at Gulfstream, wasn’t remotely involved in the early going of the Palm Beach, rating far back in the eight-horse field as Arzak sped to the lead on the first turn and quickly opened up several lengths on longshot Hot Blooded, who was several lengths ahead of Fighting Force, during a half-mile completed in 44.80 seconds. Arzak continued to show the way into the stretch under Irad Ortiz Jr. but began shortening stride as his rivals began closing in. Scarlett Bay split horses on the inside as Annex surged on the outside.

Annex ($4.60), a Bill Mott-trained son of Constitution, out-battled Scarlet Bay to the wire, scoring in 1:40.62. Chess’s Dream finished third.

Palm Beach Quotes 

Winning Trainer Bill Mott, Annex): “I thought he’d break a little sharper than he did, but as fast as the pace was, it was setting up for a horse to come from behind, and that’s what happened.

“I had to look up to the toteboard and see how fast they were going. That horse that was rolling along in 44-and-change, it looked like he wasn’t sending him to do it. I was surprised when they put up that time on the teletimer.”

Winning Jockey Junior Alvarado, Annex): “Even thought it was a quick pace, it was only one horse. There were three or four horses in front of me and we were in a nice rhythm. I had to forget about the horses in front of me and make sure that my horse got in a nice comfortable rhythm the whole way to make sure he finished like he did the first time. He did it again.”

Edited Press Release- Gulfstream Park/ Photo Credit- Coglianese

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