ARCADIA, Calif. – Heavily favored Neptune’s Storm ran to the betting in Saturday’s $70,000 Lure Stakes at Santa Anita, as the 5-year-old Stormy Atlantic gelding accelerated nicely off the turn for home en route to a methodical neck victory under Flavien Prat. Trained by Peter Miller, Neptune’s Storm got one mile on turf in 1:35.49.
A close second to pacesetter Lambeau to the far turn, Neptune’s Storm drew alongside mid-way around the far turn and with three sixteenths of a mile to run, there was little doubt he’d deliver the mail, although Prat stayed busy late to keep him focused as he kept runner-up Order and Law at bay close to home.
“We had a good trip,” said Prat, who along with Miller registered his second win on the day. “He was traveling well and when I asked him turning for home, he kicked on well. When he went by that horse (Lambeau), he messed around a bit. He’s an old man, he knows what he’s doing.”
Most recently ninth against much tougher competition going a mile and one quarter on turf in the Grade II John Henry Turf Classic here on Oct. 2, Neptune’s Storm was off at 1-2 in a field of six 3-year-olds and up and paid $3.00, $2.60 and $2.20.
“I think Flavien did a great job getting him out in the clear,” said Miller. “When Edwin (Maldonado, aboard Lambeau) slowed it down…, I thought well, we have no excuses. He tried to pull himself up a little bit the last eighth of a mile, but Flavien stayed busy enough and we got it done.”
Owned by CYBT, Saul Gervitz, Lynn Gitomer, Mike Goetz, Michael Nentwig and Daniel Weiner, Neptune’s Storm also relished a return to a flat mile as he registered his sixth win from 12 tries at the distance. With the winner’s share of $44,880, Neptune’s Storm, a two-time graded stakes winner, increased his earnings to $981,865.
Ridden by Abel Cedillo, Order and Law rallied from off the pace to make it close late as he finished three quarters of a length in front of Lambeau. Off at 10-1, he paid $6.20 and $4.00.
Lambeau finished a length clear of second choice Majestic Eagle and paid $5.00 to show while off at 12-1.
Fractions on the race were 23.12, 47.66, 1:12.17 and 1:23.80.
Prat would go to notch his third win of the day in the eighth race aboard the Richard Baltas-trained Barbwire and appeared poised to get his fourth win of the afternoon aboard early favorite Urban in the ninth and final race.
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Mike Willman/Santa Anita Press Office
Photo: Favorite Neptune’s Storm (#1) under Flavien Prat outruns the field to take the Lure. (Benoit Photos)