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Summer Hit Wins All American Stakes To Complete Coast-To-Coast Stakes Double For Hollendorfer
Summer Hit completed a East Coast-West Coast graded stakes double for trainer Jerry Hollendorfer when he led from start to finish in the Grade 3 $100,000 All American Stakes at Golden Gate Fields Monday.
Sixty-five minutes before the All American, Hollendorfer earned one of the biggest wins in his Hall of Fame career when Sahara Sky captured the Grade 1 $750,000 Metropolitan Handicap at Belmont Park in New York.
Sahara Sky, ridden by Joel Rosario, rallied from last in a field of nine to win the Metropolitan by the slimmest of noses over pacesetter Cross Traffic. The third choice in the wagering, Sahara Sky paid $11.60.
“I thought at the eighth pole that he was going to run that horse down,” said Hollendorfer in a cell phone interview from Belmont Park. “He didn’t do it as quick as I thought he would, but he got there and I’m very grateful for that.”
Hollendorfer owns Sahara Sky, who earned $450,000 for the victory, in partnership with Kim Lloyd. A 5-year-old horse by Pleasant Tap, Sahara Sky opened the year with victories in the Grade 2 Palos Verdes and Grade 2 San Carlos Stakes at Santa Anita. Sahara Sky has seven wins in 16 starts and $886,680 in career earnings.
Hollendorfer didn’t have to sweat out a photo finish in the All American as his front-running gelding Summer Hit controlled things from start to finish in the 1 1/16-mile test for 3-year-olds and up.
Ridden by Russell Baze, Summer Hit maintained a clear lead through honest fractions – 24.46, 48.70, and 1:12.87 – on the synthetic Tapeta racing surface. Summer Hit held off Hudson Landing down the stretch to score by three-quarters of a length in 1:44.09. Administer finished third.
“Those were reasonable fractions for this horse,” said Baze. “He carries his speed all the way to the wire. It’s hard to beat a horse when he can carry his speed that well. He’s a great horse to ride. All you have to do is stay out of his way.”
Summer Hit, a very consistent son of Bertrando, was the 6-5 favorite in the All American and paid $4.60. Summer Hit has seven wins, two seconds and two thirds in 11 career starts and $281,835 in earnings.
Owned in partnership by Hollendorfer and John Carver, Summer Hit earned $60,000 for his first graded stakes victory and the second stakes win of his career. Summer Hit won the Silky Sullivan Stakes on the Golden Gate Fields turf last year.
Tres Borrachos, a multiple stakes-winning millionaire and the 2-1 second choice in the All American, finished last under veteran jockey Joey Steiner.
“He never got into it,” said Steiner of Tres Borrachos, who is based at Hollywood Park. “It felt like he didn’t really like the track. He just didn’t take to it. He didn’t want to run.”
Racing will resume at Golden Gate Fields Friday. Post time is 12:45 p.m.