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Positive Response Romps In Battaglia At Turfway Park
Validating the supreme confidence of his trainer, Positive Response rambled to a seven-length victory in the $100,000 John Battaglia Memorial Stakes at Turfway Park in Florence, Ky., Saturday night.
“I hate to say it, but he ran like I expected,” said trainer William E. Morey shortly after the victory. The day prior to the race, Morey said he was “very confident” Positive Response would triumph in the 1 1/16-mile test for 3-year-olds.
The Battaglia is the third stakes win for the Bay Area’s Positive Response, who captured the California Derby and Gold Rush Stakes at Golden Gate Fields. Positive Response will now be pointed for Turfway Park’s signature Kentucky Derby prep, the Grade 3 $500,000 Vinery Spiral Stakes on March 26.
Positive Response, ridden by Julien Couton, led wire to wire in the Battaglia and clocked a time of 1:45.13 on the synthetic Polytrack surface. Positive Response paid $6.00 as the 2-to-1 favorite and earned $59,520 for Morey and his ownership partners, Ray Pagano, Saul Gevertz, and Roger Newman.
Positive Response has five wins and two thirds in eight starts for total earnings of $223,201 and graded earnings of $24,000. By Pomeroy and out of the Farma Way mare Lisa’s Approval, Positive Response was bred in Florida by Rosebrook Farms LLC and Moreau Bloodstock International Inc.
Morey said Positive Response came out of his Battaglia victory in good order and that the horse will remain at Turfway Park with his groom, Ruben Botello, to train for the
1 1/8-mile Spiral. “I’ll be making trips to check on him and for his workouts,” said Morey.
The Battaglia was Morey’s biggest road victory and he and his partners celebrated accordingly in the track’s Turf Club and then back at their hotel.
“We had a great time,” said Morey, who was back at Golden Gate Fields for Sunday’s races.