WinStar Farm's Doubles Partner returned to the races on Saturday with a win in the Grade 3 Canadian Turf at Gulfstream Park (VIDEO
). The 5-year-old is a three-time stakes winner in his career; previous victories came in Churchill Downs' American Turf (G2) and the Tampa Bay S. (G3).
Making his first start since finishing a close third in the Turf Classic (G1) at Churchill Downs last May, Doubles Partner saved ground around the first turn and along the backstretch as Little Mike set fractions of :23.98 and :47:02 for the first half-mile after being challenged by Trend out of the gate for pacesetting honors and stalked by that rival along the backstretch.Doubles Partner moved for the leader coming into the final quarter mile, going on to win by three-quarters of a length.
“It was a perfect trip. We were right in behind the speed. He settled nice and it was a clean trip, which made things pretty easy,” winning rider Julien Leparoux said. “I was able to move out whenever I wanted and when I asked him he came running.”
The winner ran the mile in 1:32.56.
“The horse ran super off the layoff. The guys at WinStar did a super job. He really worked well on Monday and came into this race in good shape,” trainer Todd Pletcher said.
Doubles Partner, who has won five of eight starts on turf, is likely to return to action at Keeneland in the Maker’s Mark (G1) on April 13 or the Woodford Reserve (G1) at Churchill Downs on May 5.