Royal Posse wins Empire Classic in the slop at Belmont Park
NEW YORK (AP) Royal Posse won the $300,000 Empire Classic, the richest of the eight stakes for New York breds on Saturday at Belmont Park.
The program, billed as Empire Showcase Day, was contested on a sloppy track.
Royal Posse extended his winning streak to three with a 3 1/2-length win over 6/5 favorite Governor Malibu.
The 5-year-old gelding paid $7.90 to win. The time was 1:52.15 for 1 1/8 miles.
It was the second stakes victory of the day for the team of trainer Rudy Rodriguez and jockey Irad Ortiz Jr.
They also took the $250,000 Maid Of The Mist for 2-year-old fillies with Bonita Springs. She won by 5 1/4 lengths, paying $4.40 to win.
In other results:
-Bar of Gold was the dominant winner of the day, taking the $250,000 Empire Distaff by 18 lengths as the 4/5 favorite. She paid $3.70 to win, improving to 5 for 5 against New York breds, all on wet tracks.
-Pat On the Back pulled a 20-1 upset in the $250,000 Sleepy Hollow 2-year-olds, returning $43.20 to win.
-Brother O'Connell edged Tapitation by a neck in the $200,000 Mohawk. He paid $11.20 to win.
-Old Harbor, sixth in the race last year, rebounded to take the $200,000 Ticonderoga for fillies and mares. She paid $7.80 to win.
-Quezon, the 1/5 favorite, took the $150,000 Iroquois for filly and mare sprinters by 5 1/4 lengths, paying $2.50 to win.
-Breakin the Fever beat 2/5 choice Weekend Hideaway by a half-length in the $150,000 Hudson for sprinters, paying $8.30 to win.