By: Curtis “Magic” Kalleward
SARATOGA SPRINGS, NY – Trainer Danny Gargan told anyone who would listen that his prized pupil Tax was ready to run a big race in Saturday’s $600,000 Jim Dandy Stakes Presented by NYRA Bets (G2), and that’s exactly what he did as he won the 1 1/8-mile local prep for the Travers Stakes (G1).
Breaking from post 2 at 9/2 odds under Irad Ortiz, Jr., Tax led initially as the field made the clubhouse turn, posting an opening 1/4-mile fraction in :24.89. However, the Preakness Stakes (G1) winner War of Will was hell-bent on controlling the pace, and he rushed up Tax’s inside down the backstretch to take over.
Heading into the far turn, War of Will still led but soon came under pressure as Tax rallied along his outside. At the top of the stretch, War of Will began to give way as Tax held command. Despite a strong push from the 8/5 favorite Tacitus on his inside, Tax dug in hard to remain in front through to the wire. He completed the event over the fast main track in 1:49.28 while winning by 3/4 of a length.
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