Maragh takes Mother Goose Stakes
ELMONT, New York (CMC)
Jamaican jockey Rajiv Maragh led outsider Zo Impressive to a stunning upset win in the feature US$300,000 Mother Goose Stakes at Belmont Park on Saturday.
In a race that was supposed to be a duel between Kentucky Oaks winner Believe You Can and Acorn winner, Contested, Maragh stole the show with the 6-1 bet to snatch victory by three-quarter lengths.
The pair completed the trip over 1-1/16th miles in a time of one minute, 44:28 seconds.
"Maybe the biggest difference was the Acorn had a very speed-favouring track, and Contested got an uncontested lead," Maragh pointed out.
"(Today) several horses gave her more respect and put on pressure, and that helped me beat her. The pace was a little hot (in the Acorn) and they got away from me more than I wanted.
"I had too much ground to make up. We wanted more of a tracking position today."
Contested was through the first quarter in 23.08 seconds, posting 46.47 seconds for the half-mile to open up a near two-length lead.
Maragh closed Zo Impressive quickly on the turn and Disposablepleasure chased, sparking a heated stretch duel as the two favourites faded badly.
Zo Impressive, along the rails, and Disposablepleasure, disputed the last two furlongs before Maragh got home first.