Raconteur raced behind the first four runners into the turn, then launched his bid four wide into the lane, slowly edging toward Hakama until the very shadow of the wire, winning by a head. Brimstone Island finished another 1-3/4 lengths back in third.
“I didn’t want them to get too far ahead of me because speed had been holding all day,” said DeCarlo said. “I know in his other races he had been a little further back and I started niggling on him at the 5-8ths pole. When we passed the first wire I didn’t know if I’d get to him. I was actually lucky it was the second wire.”
The Todd Pletcher trainee won for the third time in eight starts and paid $5.60. Raconteur began his 3-year-old campaign with two straight victories before experiencing a troubled trip in the Gotham Stakes (G3) earlier this month.
“Very determined effort,” Pletcher said via text. “He was ridden perfectly.”
Pletcher indicated Raconteur could make his next start in the Canonero II Stakes (formerly the Federico Tesio) at Pimlico Race Course on May 5.
GETAWAY GETS AWAY AND WINS FIRST TURF RACE OF THE YEAR
Laurel Park went green on St. Patrick’s Day with the first turf races of the year. Fittingly a runner with kelly green in her silks won the initial grass race.
Getaway, with Erick Rodriguez, took the first turf race of the year. The daughter of Skip Away paid $18.60 in her maiden victory. Rodriguez swept to command along the rail inside the eighth pole and defeated eight rivals. Getaway completed the 1-1/16 mile distance in 1:44.24.
“The turf was in really good condition,” Rodriguez said. “My filly loved it."
Owned by Morgan’s Ford Farm and trained by Dove Houghton, the 3-year-old made her debut earlier this month with a seventh place finish on the main track.
Rhetoricalquestion ($10.80) won the other turf test. Three races are scheduled on the turf on Wednesday’s afternoon and another two are scheduled on Thursday.