Tizway blazed his way to the second-fastest Met Mile H. (G1) in history May 30 at Belmont Park, missing the stakes record by just 0.09 seconds and the track record by less than 3/5's of a second, while rolling to a 2 3/4-length win in the 118th running of the historic race.
The 6-year-old son of Tiznow broke very well from the far outside in the field of 11, making his way to the second spot to tuck in behind pacesetter Tackleberry. Rajiv Maragh drew his mount up alongside the frontrunner about three furlongs away from home to wrest the lead at the top of the stretch. Despite scorching the six furlongs in 1:08.66, Tizway pulled clear to a four length lead in mid-stretch and was geared down to win easily.
“I had a good post and my horse broke well,” said Maragh. “He was always running for me. I really didn’t have to do much, just get him going at the right time and he held off pretty fine. It was pretty straight forward; I broke out of the gate, I just ran a straight line, dropped in a little when I went to the turn, gave my horse the cue and he was always into the bridle.”
“He tries every time,” said winning trainer H. James Bond. “He couldn’t stand up on that stuff at Charles Town (last time out, on a sloppy track), and still ran a game third and just missed second. Like I say, I’m just fortunate enough to have him in my barn.”
Owned by William L. Clifton, Jr., Tizway improved his record to 6-1-5 from 19 starts. The win was worth $300,000, lifting his career earnings to $909,274. Tizway has a particular affinity for Belmont, winning the Grade 2 Kelso H. there last autumn as well as beating Belmont S. (G1) winner Da' Tara in an allowance race two years ago.
Tizway was bred in Kentucky by Whisper Hill Farm. Clifton bought Tizway as a yearling in the 2006 Keeneland September sale for $140,000.
Out of the unraced Dayjur mare Bethany, Tizway is a half-brother to the stakes winner Ticket to Seattle. Bethany is a half-sister to two-time Grade 1 winner Will's Way.
With his victory in the Met Mile, which is part of the Breeders’ Cup Challenge series, Tizway is now guaranteed a spot in the starting gate and will have his pre-entry and entry fees waived for the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile (G1) at Churchill Downs in November. Bond, however, is also considering a start in the Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) for his stable star.
“I’ll probably look at the Whitney (Grade 1, Aug. 6, at Saratoga Race Course),” said Bond. “It’s our home base. We’ll back up from the Breeders’ Cup and basically start looking backwards and try to find the right spots for him. I know this horse will run a mile-and-a-quarter.”