BENSALEM, Pa.— Red Oak Stable (Brunetti) and Madaket Stables, LLC’s Mind Control defended his title in the $250,000 Parx Dirt Mile but not by crossing the finish line first.
The multiple Grade 1-winning son of Stay Thirsty broke on top from post position 2 but speedy Far Mo Power quickly grabbed the lead heading into the first turn. With Mind Control tracking a half-length behind in second, Far Mo Power led the way to two furlongs from home, running the opening quarter in 24.06. After the half, clocked in 47.54, the top two began to draw away.
It was essentially a match race rounding the far turn, Far Mo Power and Mind Control six lengths ahead of the nearest competitor, 97-1 shot New Commission. Shoulder-to-shoulder through six furlongs in 1:11.50, the duo battled down the stretch, Mind Control briefly poking his head in front before his rival took command again, crossing the wire just a neck in front. The final time for the one-mile distance was 1:36.59.
After the race, both the inquiry and objection signs were posted on the board, the top two finishers the ones involved. After a few minutes, track announcer Chris Griffin announced that stewards had disqualified Far Mo Power and placed him second. The reason for the disqualification was for interference at the top of the stretch.
Eleven lengths behind elevated-winner Mind Control and Far Mo Power was Dontmesawithme in third. New Commission, Derby House, Too Boss, and Milton the Monster followed. Nick Papagiorgio was scratched.
The top three finishers paid 3.20, 6.40, and 7.00, respectively.
Mind Control, a six-year-old homebred for Red Oak Stable, boosted his record to 11 wins from 28 starts with his Parx Dirt Mile win. Trained by Todd Pletcher and piloted by John Velazquez, the bay horse has amassed $1,773,334 in earnings. Notably, Mind Control won the 2018 edition of the Grade 1 Hopeful and the 2019 edition of the Grade 1 H. Allen Jerkens.
By Amber Joyce, Contributing Editor
Photo: Mind Control (outside) defends his title in the Parx Dirt Mile, via disqualification (Nikki Sherman/EQUI-PHOTO)
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