Saturday, November 22, 2014

Readthebyline, Vicki's Dancer take NYSS stakes

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Readthebyline, Vicki's Dancer take NYSS stakes

By Sean Morris

OZONE PARK, N.Y. - Readthebyline and Vicki's Dancer emerged victorious in the $125,000 New York Stallion Series Thunder Rumble and $125,000 NYSS Staten Island, respectively, on Saturday at Aqueduct Racetrack.

The NYSS stakes had to share the spotlight, however, as fan favorite Honor Code returned to the races in spectacular fashion, taking a 6 ½-furlong optional claimer with a breathtaking run from off the pace. The winner of last year's Grade 2 Remsen and runner-up in the Grade 1 Champagne had not raced since finishing second to Social Inclusion in an allowance race on March 12 at Gulfstream Park.

In the featured eighth race, the NYSS Thunder Rumble, Readthebyline broke on top and never looked back under Jose Ortiz, taking the field gate to wire in the seven-furlong sprint.

The 5-year-old gelding was reunited with trainer Michelle Nevin and owner Vincent Scuderi for the Thunder Rumble, who haltered the son of Read the Footnotes for $40,000 out of his last start. Previously for Nevin and Scuderi, Readthebyline won a $25,000 claiming race on May 7 at Belmont Park by 6 ¼ lengths and earned a Beyer Speed Figure of 109.

"We weren't particularly pointing to this race [after claiming him], it just happened to come up," said Nevin. "He does have a ton of speed coming out of the gate, so I was just hoping that nobody else would go with him out too soon, to where he would use himself up. He seems to do his best running up front."

Readthebyline returned $13 on a $2 win bet, and boosted his career bankroll to $463,335. He completed the distance in 1:23.85.

Odds-on favorite West Hills Giant came from off the pace to get second, 2 ¾ lengths behind Readthebyline. Geaux Mets finished third, and was followed under the wire by John's Island, Gridley Here, Loki's Vengeance, Chapman, Sir Leslie and Belief System.

Equipped with blinkers for the first time in her career, Vicki's Dancer was eager early in the Staten Island, pulling Irad Ortiz, Jr. along as Uncle Southern led the field through fractions of 23.24 seconds for the opening quarter-mile and 46.37 for the half.

Vicki's Dancer stayed glued to the front-runner as the field rounded the far turn, overtook the leader at the top of the stretch, and prevailed by 1 ¼ lengths in a determined drive.

"I thought with the blinkers on, she'd be a little closer," said Rudy Rodriguez, who trains Vicki's Dancer for Michael Dubb, Bethlehem Stables and Gary Aisquith. "She hung in there pretty good. She's nice and sound, so we try to keep her happy. At Saratoga, she looked like she was hanging, hanging, hanging. Mr. Dubb suggested we put blinkers on, and it worked."


Vicki's Dancer completed the distance in 1:25.12, and returned $8.60 on a $2 win wager. Her career bankroll now sits at $439,025.

Saythreehailmary's finished second, a half-length in front of Uncle Southern. Storied Lady, Sunny Desert, Royal Suspicion, Champagne Ruby, Skye Saratoga and Just Catty completed the order of finish.



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