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Cuatro De Julio Comes Back A Winner

Published: September 7, 2021 4:55 pm ET

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A speedster as a freshman with a mark of 1:51.3 taken at The Red Mile last year, the Trixton colt Cuatro De Julio returned to the site of his speediest victory following a break last week with a lifetime-best 1:51 win in the $40,000 Kentucky Championship fourth preliminary for three-year-old trotting colts and geldings on Tuesday (Sept. 7).

The Marie Ortolan Bar-trained son of Trixton sat fourth as Really Fast carved opening splits of :28 and :56 with Kildare King in the pocket. Venerate raced third through the first half and gradually pulled first-over around the final turn, giving Cuatro De Julio cover to follow. Really Fast passed three-quarters in 1:24.2 and promptly tired in the stretch when pressed by Venerate. Driver Lucas Wallin then angled his charge off Venerate’s cover and took a shot at the late leader through the stretch, nailing a nose in front at the beam while chased home by Kildare King in third another four lengths behind.

Owned by D Farm LLC, Cuatro De Julio earned his second win from eight starts this season and his 11th from 22 overall, lifting his bankroll to $258,753. He paid $8.60 to win.

Beltassima took the $40,000 Kentucky Championship for three-year-old trotting fillies going gate to wire in 1:52.3.

Driver Andrew McCarthy secured the lead with the Trixton filly to a :29 first quarter with stablemate Piper Hanover sitting second and Awesome Trix in third. She continued uncontested on the point past a :57 half and to three-quarters in 1:25.1, with Adirondack flushing first-over to the final turn but stalling. Beltassima bolted into the stretch and opened ground on her competition as 1-2 favourite Empressive Hill attempted to scoot into the mix from last, but broke stride in tight quarters at the pylons. Awesome Trix grabbed second, beaten three lengths, with Piper Hanover settling for third and Empressive Hill regaining stride to take fourth.

Owned by Crawford Farms Racing, Beltassima has won half of her 10 starts this season. Lifetime, she has won seven of her 17 races while earning $260,447. She paid $18.80 to win.

Jula Muscle Pack ($4) strolled in the $20,000 Kentucky Commonwealth division for three-year-old trotting colts and geldings, winning by 7-1/2 lengths in 1:53.1. Andrew McCarthy piloted the winner for trainer Per Engblom.

Altar ($2.40) took the $20,000 Kentucky Commonwealth split for sophomore trotting fillies in similar style, cruising to a five-length victory in 1:50.4. Dexter Dunn drove the Nancy Takter trainee.

Point totals for both the Kentucky Championship and Kentucky Commonwealth Series are available at the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission website.

Racing resumes at The Red Mile on Sunday, Sept. 12 with the fourth preliminary of the Kentucky Championship Series and the Kentucky Commonwealth Series for pacing sophomores. Sunday’s card is the final featuring preliminary action, with the Kentucky Championship Finals slated for Sunday, Sept. 19 and the Kentucky Commonwealth Finals for Monday, Sept. 20. First-race post time each race day at The Red Mile is 1 p.m. (EDT).

(With files from The Red Mile)

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