Leavem In Malibu All The Way In Valedictory

Leavem in Malibu scored a front-running victory in the $125,000 Valedictory Stakes (Grade 3) for Mark Casse, who finished second in the trainer standings for the first time in over a decade as Norm McKnight took the lead with a five-win performance during Woodbine’s final program of the 2017 Thoroughbred season on Sunday.

Jockey Patrick Husbands guided Leavem in Malibu ($9.40) to victory over even-money favourite Melmich in the last stakes race of the meet for owners Gary Barber and Conrad Farms.

Sent postward as the 7-2 second choice in the 12-horse field, the four-year-old Malibu Moon-Leaveminthedust colt rebuffed a challenge from Ethical Funds and David Moran during the 1-3/4 mile marathon and prevailed in 2:58.92 by two and a half lengths over the late-closing Melmich, who made a sweeping four-wide move on the final turn in rein to Woodbine’s top jockey Eurico Rosa Da Silva. Ethical Funds settled for third.

“I studied the racing form all last night. All the time I saw this horse is a galloper,” said Husbands. “I went over the form about 300 times. I said, you know what, I’m going to let this horse run away and see what these guys are going to do in the first mile. And they left me the first mile and he was just playing with them.

“He was just galloping,” said Husbands of being headed by Ethical Funds on the backstretch. “I never really worried about David. You’ve got one class horse in the race and he has a serious turn of foot and I didn’t want to risk a sprint home so I was just keeping my eyes on David, but worried about Eurico coming. But I was doing it so easy, I was never really worried. He ran a good race.”

The post Leavem In Malibu All The Way In Valedictory appeared first on Horse Racing News | Paulick Report.

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