By Jack Shinar, Blood-Horse
Uncaptured overcame some traffic problems to register a convincing 5 1/2-length win in the $114,800 Iroquois Stakes (gr. III) Oct. 28 at Churchill Downs for his fifth win in six tries this year.
Trained by Mark Casse for owner John C. Oxley, the winning son of Lion Heart was ridden to victory by Miguel Mena at generous odds of 9-2. Uncaptured was making his first start on dirt after dominating the 2-year-old male ranks on Polytrack at Woodbine.
Uncaptured, bred in Ontario, Canada by William D. Graham, is out of the non-winning Arch mare Captivating. The dark bay or brown colt recorded victories in the Swynford, Vandal, and Clarendon at Woodbine prior to finishing fifth as the 2-5 favorite in the Grey (gr. III) in his previous race after experiencing trouble.
Racing mid-pack, Uncaptured was steadied in traffic on the turn and then guided to the outside by a patient Mena for the drive. He surged to the lead over Positively mid-stretch and drew away sharply in the final furlong under steady urging. The final time for the one-turn mile was a slow 1:37.63 over a main track rated fast.
Road Agent, an 80-1 shot, set the early pace, stepping the opening quarter in :22.88 and the half in :46.24, before backing out quickly.
Uncaptured was ridden in his prior starts by Patrick Husbands. He graduated at first asking May 13 before going on a three-stakes win streak at Woodbine when favored each time. His failure in the 1 1/16-mile Grey came after he was shuffled back and checked in his only try around two turns so far.
Uncaptured's first victory outside of Canada was worth $67,617 and boosted his career bankroll to $406,845.
Overanalyze, impressive winner of the Futurity (gr. II) at Belmont Park Sept. 30, was shipped from New York for the Iroquois due to owner Mike Repole's boycott of this year's Breeders' Cup because of its ban on the diuretic Lasix in juvenile races. Overanalyze and the other nine horses in the Iroquois field raced with Lasix.
Sent off as the fourth choice, Uncaptured paid $11.40, $4.60, and $3.60 and keyed a $46.80 exacta. second choice Positively, runner-up in Churchill's Bashford Manor (gr. III) in June, returned $4 and $3. Overanalzye paid $3 to show.
Strike the Note was fourth, followed by Pataky Kid, Five Iron, Heaven's Runaway, Triple Cross, Agave Cat, and Road Agent.
For an Equibase chart, click here.