The second choice at 4-1 behind the 1-2 favorite, Tangled Tango emerged victorious by a nose over Pleasure to Ride in a five-horse blanket finish as Black Bear Island, a full brother to 2003 Breeders’ Cup Turf Champion High Chaparral, checked in sixth and triggered a Pick Six carryover of $66,401 into Thursday’s eight-race program at Oak Tree.
Making his third start for Sadler after two dull efforts over Polytrack at Del Mar, the winner paid $10.80, $5 and $4. Pleasure to Ride, ridden by Alex Solis, returned $6.20 and $5 while the show price on Mr. Rod, with Tyler Baze aboard, was $8.20.
The upset sealed the carryover even though an even-money shot, Buyer’s Remorse, had won the first leg of Wednesday’s Pick Six sequence. The next three races were won by Victoria Reel at $18, High Note at $17.60 and Spaniard at $10.80.
Although heavily favored Black Bear Island finished sixth with no apparent excuses, he was surging at the wire and the official finish chart of the race reveals he was beaten four noses and a neck for the win.
A 3-year-old son of Sadler’s Wells purchased recently by a partnership that includes R. D. Hubbard, Ed Allred and Robert Masterson, Black Bear Island had gone off at 7-1 odds in the Epsom Derby won by European superstar Sea The Stars in June after finishing second ahead of Sea The Stars’ fourth-place finish in the first start for both in July at The Curragh in Ireland.
Black Bear Island was making his first start for trainer Julio Canani and was coincidentally beaten by a horse that Canani used to train. Before moving to Sadler’s barn, Tangled Tango had finished second in the Grade II La Jolla Handicap at Del Mar and third in the Grade II Del Mar Derby, both on grass.
“The key today was getting him back on grass,” said Sadler as the 4-year-old colt by Petionville earned $28,200 for Tommy Town Thoroughbreds. Today marked Tangled Tango’s third start of the year and his third start for Sadler. The victory boosted his career earnings to $225,560 from a 3-4-3 record in eleven starts.
Thursday’s Pick Six sequence begins with the third race with first post at 1 p.m. General Admission at Oak Tree is $5 and Club House admission is $8.50. Seniors aged 62-and-up are admitted free on all Thursdays.