SARATOGA SPRINGS, NY – Juddmonte Farms’ homebred Hofburg marked himself a prime contender for the Grade 1 Travers next month after storming home to a resounding finish in Friday’s $100,000 Curlin Stakes at Saratoga.
Breaking from the rail as the 1-5 favorite under Irad Ortiz, Jr., Hofburg tussled briefly with Madison’s Luna to his immediate outside before settling in the rear of the five-horse field while American Lincoln set initial splits of :23.25, :47.81, and 1:11.94. Hofburg spent the backstretch run still in fifth but within only a handful of lengths. Heading into the far turn, Hofburg began picking off rivals along the outside, and by the time the field exited onto the front stretch, Hofburg emerged with the lead. Needing only a brief urging from Ortiz, Jr., Hofurg drew off with ease in the final furlong, crossing with a 5-length advantage in a final time of 1:50.18 for the 9-furlong event over a sloppy main track.
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