Die Laughing moved a step closer to earning 2-year-old colt-of-the-year honors by winning the $298,345 Presidential at Rosecroft Raceway last night. Earlier in the program, Cams Exotic won the $144,701 First Lady for 2-year-old pacing fillies.
Driver Richie Silverman left little to chance in the Presidential by leaving hastily from the rail with Die Laughing ($2.60) to capture the lead. Looking strong for most of the mile, Die Laughing went on to win in wire-to-wire fashion, covering the distance in a good 1:54.
The time is the fastest mile turned in by a 2-year-old at Rosecroft this season, bettering by two-fifths of a second the mark Die Laughing set in a Presidential elimination heat last week.
Cambest finish second, one length back, for driver David Rankin.
"My plan was to get on the front end unless Cambest came on early," said Silverman, who also won the $1 million Woodrow Wilson pace with Die Laughing. "He drifted out a little bit in the stretch. He usually doesn't do that."
Trained by Jerry Silverman, the driver's father, Die Laughing's Presidential win was the colt's seventh in nine starts and pushed his career earnings to $965,922.
In the First Lady, driver Doug Brown recaptured the lead with Cams Exotic at the three-eighths-mile pole after briefly yielding the front to Ron Waples and Sara Loren RD. Cams Exotic ($4.20) wasn't seriously challenged thereafter and paced on to win in 1:56 3/5. Sara Loren RD took second, 1 1/4 lengths back.