Silver Prospector’s Steve Sexton Mile Score Caps Four-Win Day For Asmussen, Elliott

Putting the finishing touch on a four-win day for the trainer-jockey combination of Steve Asmussen and Stewart Elliott, Ed and Susie Orr’s 5-year-old Silver Prospector ended a two-year stakes drought by winning Monday’s Grade 3, $400,000 Steve Sexton Mile Stakes at Lone Star Park in Grand Prairie, Texas.

The gray son of Declaration of War was forwardly placed throughout while wide, ran down pace-setting Mish inside the eighth pole and drew off late to win by 1 1/2 lengths, covering the mile in 1:37.20 on a fast track. Silver Prospector, winning for the fifth time in 21 career starts, paid $13 to win.

Mish, making his stakes debut for Florida-based trainer Saffie Joseph Jr., held second by a neck after setting all the fractions under Edwin Gonzalez. Shaaz, a West Coast invader made the 2-1 favorite under Florent Geroux in his stakes debut, finished third, with local hope Popular Kid another neck back in fourth in the field of nine older runners. Rated R Superstar, Sheriff Brown, Flash of Mischief, Mine That Star and Tesoro completed the order of finish. Elector was scratched before making the trip to Texas from his California base.

Earlier on the day, Asmussen and Elliott teamed to win a starter/optional claiming race with Lady Ave, took the Memorial Day Sprint Stakes with Kalypso and then scored a 10-1 upset in the $300,000 Texas Derby with the Curlin colt King Ottoman for Three Chimneys Farm.

Silver Prospector, bred by Hargus and Sandra Sexton and Silver Fern Farm LLC and produced from the stakes-placed Tapit mare Tap Softly, was a $180,000 2-year-olds in training purchase by the Orrs at the OBS April sale from the consignment of Eisaman Equine. Later that year, Silver Prospector won the G2 Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes as a 2-year-old in 2019, defeating eventual G1 Belmont Stakes winner Tiz the Law among others. As a 3-year-old, the gray colt won the G3 Southwest Stakes, but a sixth-place finish in the G2 Rebel began a  streak of nine non-winning performances in graded stakes, though he would finish second in the G3 Razorback and G3 Mineshaft.

The Steve Sexton Mile was his first win since an allowance victory Oct. 30, 2020.

After breaking from the outside post and racing five wide around the first turn, Elliott moved toward the leader approaching the far turn after Mish set fractions of :24.00 for the opening quarter mile and :46.99 for the half. Silver Prospector loomed up to challenge Mish nearing the quarter pole and overtook the front-runner to get the win following a six-furlong fraction of 1:11.33 and seven furlongs in 1:23.91.

“Stewart gave him a great trip,” Asmussen told TVG’s Scott Hazelton. “You know he’s kept great company his whole career – a couple of graded stakes wins. It’s great to have him in the winner’s circle after a great race like this.”

The race is named for the respected racetrack executive who was part of the management team when Lone Star Park opened in 1997. Sexton held executive positions at a number of other tracks, including Canterbury Downs, Golden Gate Fields, Thistledown, Arlington Park and Churchill Downs, serving as president from 2002-’09 at the home of the Kentucky Derby. A member of the Texas Horse Racing Hall of Fame, Sexton died Dec. 12, 2016, at the age of 57 after battling brain cancer.

The post Silver Prospector’s Steve Sexton Mile Score Caps Four-Win Day For Asmussen, Elliott appeared first on Horse Racing News | Paulick Report.

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