Photo by Maryland Jockey Club
David Joseph/Maryland Jockey Club
LAUREL, Md. – Victoria’s Ranch’s Little Vic, unplaced in three graded-stakes attempts this year, dropped into listed company and made his Laurel Park debut a successful one with a determined 1 ½-length triumph in Saturday’s 12thrunning of the $100,000 City of Laurel.
A sophomore son of multiple graded-stakes winning millionaire Practical Joke, Little Vic ($12.40) earned his second straight win after beating older horses in an open six-furlong allowance Oct. 20 at Delaware Park for trainer Juan Carlos Avila.
Little Vic settled in fifth as 15-1 long shot Defend took the field of 11 3-year-olds through a quarter-mile in 22.41 seconds with Uncle Buddy in close pursuit and 2021 Timonium Juvenile winner Cynergy’s Star three wide in the clear in third. Uncle Buddy inherited the lead after a half in 45.34 while Al Loves Josie began to roll on the outside and jockey Carlos Olivero stayed put along the rail, forging a short lead after six furlongs in 1:10.50 and edging clear.
Radical Right, sent off the 2-1 favorite, came with a sustained late run on the outside to edge Al Loves Josie by a neck for second, followed by Nimitz Class, Uncle Buddy, Local Motive, Irish Boolum, Undercover Kitty, Steinbeck, Cynergy’s Star and Defend. Coastal Mission and Twisted Ride were scratched.
Little Vic debuted last fall in South Florida, winning his unveiling at Gulfstream Park and finishing seventh in the Sam F. Davis (G3) Feb. 12 at Tampa Bay Downs in his third start. He was sixth in the May 21 Chick Lang (G3) at historic Pimlico Race Course and 10th in the Sept. 24 Gallant Bob (G2) at Parx prior to his current streak.