R.T. Racing Stable’s Breakthrough broke from post 3 (due to a scratch) and never looked back after he took the lead from Admiral Abe to win the $100,000 Wolf Hill Stakes at Monmouth Park. The Wolf Hill kicked off stakes action on the TVG.com Haskell Day undercard. The win gave the gelding and his trainer their first stakes win.
Conditioned by Juan Carlos Avila, Breakthrough set the pace with an opening 1/4 of 22.44 as Admiral Abe continued to challenge the leader with Belgrano close behind until the straight when Belgrano ($4.60, 3.60) would prevail for second with Breakthrough taking honors by half a length.
Admiral Abe ($5.20) under Silvestre Gonzalez finished 2 1/2 back for third with a late rally by Proven Strategies under Nik Juarez grabbing fourth by a head outkicking The Critical Way.
Montauk Daddy and Constant Knight complete the order of finish. Big Package to start from post 2 was a scratch by the trainer.
Breakthrough ($34.80, 12.60, 7.20) was expertly piloted by Samy Camacho carrying 118 lbs with Belgrano with Jorge Vargas, Jr., up carrying 124 lbs.
“He really fought for me in the stretch. I felt like I had a lot of horse and I have a lot of confidence in myself so everything’s good. When I saw The Critical Way didn’t break faster than my horse, I said to myself, `I’m sorry but I’m going to beat you.’ The course is very firm today. It’s good for fast horses, good for the speed,” Camacho recounted.
The fractions for the 5 1/2 furlongs on the turf were 44.18, 55.24 with a final time of 1:00.99. The track record was set by Bridgetown at 1:00.67 September 6, 2010.
“I expected to get the lead (even over the Critical Way). I didn’t know if he would win but I knew he would get the lead. This horse has never been better than he is right now. I’m very happy to get this horse his first stakes win. It means a lot to me because of the great owners this horse has,” Avila commented.
The dark bay gelding has won two of his five starts this year with earnings of $100,200. He has 17 career starts with four firsts, three seconds and one third with career earnings of $181,000. Much of his earnings came from the $60,000 first place purse from the Wolf Hill. The win also earned the 4-year-old Black Type.
The stakes win is a follow up to a win in a 5 1/2 furlongs at Monmouth on July 4. This was Breakthrough’s first stakes win. He ran in three previous stakes—the Get Serious at Monmouth Park, Gulfstream Park Turf Spring (G3) and Janus also at Gulfstream with finishes of seventh, seventh and eighth, respectively.
“In his last stakes race he had a lot of problems and was not able to make the lead and he likes to run on the front end. This race he was able to run the way he likes. In his best races he has been on the front, and I thought if he could get to the front this race that he had a chance to win,” said Avila.
Bred in Kentucky by Highclere Inc. and Springtown Show Stables, Breakthrough is by Kentucky Derby winner Nyquist out of Storm Creek mare Murky Waters. He was purchased at the Fasig-Tipton Kentucky July 2019 Yearling sale for $330,000.
“I’m very grateful for this opportunity. There was another rider (Inoel Beato) who was supposed to ride this horse. The trainer called me in the morning and said, `Hey. do you want to ride my horse?’ I broke on top and everybody let me go so easy. At the three-eighths pole I feel like, okay, nobody’s coming, I think I have this, and I won the race,” Camacho remarked.
By Maribeth Kalinich
Breakthrough #4 with Samy Camacho riding won the $100,000 Wolf Hill Stakes. Photo By Ryan Denver/EQUI-PHOTO