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Features - RACING

Photos courtesy Hodges Photography

By Melissa Bauer-Herzog, America's Best Racing

The $400,000 Risen Star Stakes (G2) had the upset of the weekend on Saturday when Ive Struck a Nerve rallied from the back of the field to win in 1:44.52 in dramatic fashion at the Fair Grounds. 

Ridden by James Graham for trainer Keith Desormeaux, Ive Struck a Nerve started picking off horses as the field entered the far turn. As a group of horses fought for the lead in the stretch, Ive Struck a Nerve continued his march forward, joining the fight in the final furlong to win a photo finish by a nose over Code West. The son of Yankee Gentleman went off at odds of 135.20-1 in the 1 1/16-mile race. 


The Risen Star is part of the Kentucky Derby Championship Season and allowed Ive Struck a Nerve to earn 50 points for his win, taking his total to 51 points and giving him the lead in the Road to the Kentucky Derby standings. The bay colt, owned by Big Chief Racing, earned his first win three starts ago but was previously stakes-placed in the Sugar Bowl Stakes. Ive Struck a Nerve is out of a half-sister to Grade 1 winner K. J.’s Appeal and from the family of Group 1 winner and sire Ubique. He was sold for $1,700 at the 2010 Keeneland November breeding stock sale.

Code West was on the wrong side of the win photo, finishing second with Palace Malice third and Oxbow fourth. Race favorite Normandy Invasion finished fifth. A $2 win ticket on Ive Struck a Nerve returned $272.40.

For an Equibase chart, click here.


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