Jockey Chris McCarron put on a powerful display of riding through the stretch yesterday to make Harry G. Hopkins' Bold Road a neck winner in Laurel's $27,500 Taylor Chewning Handicap over Mr. Cornerstone.
Presto Presto, a 19-to-1 shot, finished third, a length behind. Bold Road paid $10 to win and ran the mile in 1:40.
McCarron allowed Bold Road to loaf during the early part of the race, with Squadron Castle setting the pace. Near the stretch, turn, the jockey sent his 3-year-old up to challenge, along with Presto Presto on the outside. Mr. Cornerstone also came wide with his rally.
Straightened for home, McCarron drove Bold Road from the left and right with powerful swats of the whip. Bold Road, never having gone beyond six furlongs, was beginning to tire and needed help.
At the 16th pole, Mr. Cornerstone had his run together and was wearing down the opposition with every stride as Counter Punch finally extricated himself from close quarters. At the end, McCarron had Bold Road fully extended as the colt won his first added-money event. Bold Road is trained by Bud Delp.
After the race, McCarron said, "Bud told me to ride him like it was three quarters. He relaxed for me and, when they challenged him at the quarter pole, he took off."
The crowd of 10.616 sent $1,277.299 through the mutuel machines, a slight rise over the same day last year.