EYEONTHELINE PROMINENT EARLY, STRONG LATE IN MARATHON KEY WEST WIN AT 1,000 YARDS
Hialeah, FL / January 26, 2014 – The gray six-year-old gelding Eyeontheline, owned by Erasmo Hernandez, trained by Guadalupe Garza, Jr., and ridden by Oscar Delgado, was best “around the hook” in winning Sunday’s marathon $42,000 Key West Stakes at 1,000 yards by 1-1/4 lengths over Texas Vision.
Even after ducking out at the start and bumping with the runner-up shortly after the start, Eyeontheline settled well, gained the lead early, put three lengths on his rivals turning for home, then held sway to the finish line. He covered the race distance in a time of 54.276 seconds.
Eyeontheline, a son of Eye Yin You out of the Barrett’s Bullet mare Bobbie Lou, found the winner’s circle in his second outing at Hialeah Park. He garnered his 8th victory in his 21st lifetime start, earning the winner’s share of $25,200 for the day’s work. Those winnings increased his lifetime earnings to $91,676.
Delgado said, “These races are fun. I knew he would do well from the inside post position. We’ve been working real hard with him all season long and it finally paid off.”
Delgado, the all-time leader in Quarter Horse jockey wins at Hialeah Park, did not ride in South Florida last season, trying his hand on the Thoroughbred side of the racing business in the mid-Atlantic area of the country.
“It’s great to be back here,” Delgado said. “I wasn’t getting any younger, so I wanted to give the Thoroughbreds a shot. I’m glad I did, but I’m happy to be back at Hialeah Park and thrilled to be winning races again.”
After the top two, 5-2 mutuel favorite Apollo Ono checked in third, beaten five lengths, after bobbling at the break. The gelding was chasing a second straight win “around the hook” after trouncing a field of allowance-level runners at the distance January 12.
Doyles Dashing Star, winner of the opening-day Orange Blossom Stakes at 550 yards on November 29, raced wide from her outside post position in the eight-horse field, weakened in the stretch, but still held fourth place.
The official order of finish in the 2014 Key West Stakes, the 4th and penultimate race in the new Hialeah Marathon Series, was: Eyeontheline, Texas Vision, Apollo Ono, Doyles Dashing Star, Trs Hotshot Adam, Sassy Suzze, I Beat The Feet, and The Star Alert.
The Hialeah Marathon Series ends with another extra-long affair at 1,000 yards, the $50,000-added Sailfish Stakes on closing day February 23.