Kendall Hansen’s longshot Fast and Accurate continued his improvement by leaps and bounds on March 25 with a victory in the $500,000, Grade 3 Jack Cincinnati Casino Spiral Stakes at Turfway Park.
The 3-year-old Hansen colt made a three-wide move on the final turn to hit the front, then held off a late drive on the rail by fellow longshot Blueridge Traveler to prevail by three-quarters of a length.
Hansen is from Crestview Hills in Northern Kentucky and has campaigned and bet horses at Turfway Park for many years. He bred and owned 2011 champion 2-year-old male Hansen, who would finish ninth in the 2012 Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands.
Hansen, the owner, was moved to tears after the Spiral win, thrilled to be going back to the Derby and thrilled to be the owner of the first graded stakes winner for Hansen the horse.
“I never thought I’d have another horse like him,” Hansen said. “But Hansen is the gift that keeps on giving.”
Fast and Accurate is not nominated to the Triple Crown but Hansen said the horse would be pointed to the Kentucky Derby. At this point it would cost $200,000 to nominate to the Triple Crown races.
The victory was the fourth overall and second in a row in the Spiral for trainer Mike Maker, who took the 1 1/8-mile test with Oscar Nominated in 2016.
Another son of Hansen, En Hanse, broke quickly out of post 12 and set the pace, clicking off quarter-mile fractions of :23.22, :46.36, and 1:10.22 through six furlongs, but he began to tire on the final turn as Fast and Accurate took command. The winner ran a mile in 1:36.85 and crossed the finish line in 1:50.96 under jockey Tyler Gaffalione.
Behind Blueridge Traveler came Convict Pike to complete the trifecta. Favored Kitten’s Cat loomed in the stretch but flattened out to finish fourth.
The Spiral was Fast and Accurate’s third straight win. He broke his maiden at the $30,000 maiden claiming level on Dec. 4 at Turfway then took to grass for the first time to win the Sage of Monticello Stakes at Gulfstream Park on Feb. 20.
Maker said they thought Fast and Accurate needed a confidence builder when they dropped him into the maiden-claiming race at Turfway. He said as a Pennsylvania-bred, they hoped there wouldn’t be much interest in claiming the horse. Hansen said he was nervous throughout that race day but thrilled with the outcome — a 4 1/2-length victory without being claimed.
Maker said that effort had the desired effect of building the horse’s confidence.
Supplemental nominees for the Kentucky Derby are treated the same as original nominees. If one or more supplemental nominees possess sufficient Road to the Kentucky Derby points to qualify for the Derby field, they will be allowed to start over original nominees that possess lesser qualifications.