JERSEY SHORE STAKES | PURSE: $100,000 | 3-YEAR-OLDS | GRADE 3 | 6 FURLONGS
Rustlewood Farm's homebred Prudhoe Bay repelled a game bid from 6-5 choice Favorite Tale and won the $100,000 Jersey Shore Stakes Aug. 17 at Monmouth Park.
Breaking from the inside post in the field of six 3-year-olds, the winner dueled early with pacesetter Debt Ceiling while Favorite Tale tracked from third. Responding willingly, he easily dispatched the front-runner after a half-mile to take charge with Paco Lopez.
Leading Favorite Tale by a half-length in early stretch as Debt Ceiling sputtered and faded out of contention, Prudhoe Bay edged away to a three-quarter-length win and covered the six furlongs on a fast main track in 1:09.08.
"I thought he ran fantastic, but that doesn't surprise me," said winning trainer Eddie Plesa Jr. "He's really been training great. I wasn't really thrilled with the post; the rail is tough, but Paco handled it great and did what he needed to do today."
Prudhoe Bay earned his third win -- all stakes -- from seven starts this season and his fourth win from nine career starts. The son of current leading Louisiana sire Songandaprayer won the OBS Sprint in January and the Ocala Breeders' Sales Sophomore Stakes in April. He boosted his career bankroll to $191,535 with the $60,000 winner's share of the Jersey Shore purse while earning his first graded win.
"I wanted to try to be sitting third or fourth, but being on the inside I couldn't take back because I wouldn't be able to get outside of the all the horses up close," Lopez said. "So I just held my position and when I asked, he really kicked on. Eddie Plesa did such a great job with this horse. He was incredible today."
Glacken Too, fifth through the opening quarter, powered up to take third, 1 ½ lengths behind Favorite Tale.
Griff finished fourth, followed by Wonderfella and Debt Ceiling to complete the order of finish.
Prudhoe Bay, sent off at 5-1 odds, paid $12.40, $4.80 and $3, keying a $42 exacta with Favorite Tale, who returned $3.20 and $2.20. Glacken Too brought paid $3.40 to show.
Prudhoe Bay was bred in Florida from the stakes-placed Lion Heart mare Cameron Crazies.