It looked for much of the stretch run of the six-furlong Saudia Sprint Cup as if it would be a double for Speightstown and Japan as Matera Sky stole a big lead after setting the pace, but as that one got extremely leg weary in the final furlong it was the charging New York Central (Tapit) who capitalized, nailing him in the shadow of the wire to win by a head as another runner formerly based in America, Gladiator King (Curlin), made up ground to be third. New York Central was a Grade III winner for WinStar Farm, China Horse Club and SF Racing, but was recently purchased by Saudi interests and was making his local debut. Irad Ortiz was in the irons.
SAUDIA SPRINT, $1,500,000, King Abdulaziz, 2-29, 3yo/up, 1200m, 1:11.68, ft.
1–NEW YORK CENTRAL, 126, h, 5, Tapit–Fashion Cat, by Forest
Wildcat. ($390,000 Wlg '15 KEENOV; $750,000 Ylg '16
FTNAUG; $240,000 HRA '19 KEENOV). O-HRH Prince Faisal bin
Khaled. B-SF Bloodstock LLC (KY). T-S Al Harabi. J-Irad Ortiz, Jr.
$900,000. Lifetime Record: GSW-US, 14-6-2-1, $1,235,310.
*1/2 to Runway Ready (Mr. Greeley), SP, $162,200; Corfu
(Malibu Moon), GSW-US, $162,200.
2–Matera Sky, 126, h, 6, Speightstown–Mostaqeleh, by Rahy.
($140,000 Wlg '14 KEENOV; $350,000 Ylg '15 KEESEP).
O-Tsuyoshi Ono. B-Lynch Bages Ltd (KY). T-Hideyuki Mori.
3–Gladiator King, 126, c, 4, Curlin–Golden Dawn, by Hennessy.
($65,000 RNA Ylg '17 KEESEP; $195,000 RNA HRA '18 OBSJUN).
O-Sheikh Rashid bin Humaid Al Nuaimi. B-Stonestreet
Thoroughbred Holdings LLC (KY). T-S Seemar. $150,000.
Margins: HD, 2 1/4, NK.
Also Ran: Maypole (GB), Mesquite (GB), Drafted, Indelible Ink (Ire), Manguzi (Fr), Captain Scotty, Beau Warrior (Ire), Muhtaram (GB), Imperial Hint, Sobre Action (Arg). VIDEO.