Commissioner's first stakes winner of 2020 came Jan. 4 at Gulfstream Park when the 3-year-old colt Island Commish bested Get Smokin by a half-length in the $100,000 Kitten's Joy S. (G3).
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Island Commish, who was stakes placed at two, is also the first graded winner for Commissioner and was one of his five stakes horses from his first crop last year.
The dark bay won a pair of turf allowances leading into Saturday's contest and is now 4-0-1 in six starts and has earned $129,740 for owner Matthew Schera. Ridden by Paco Lopez, Island Commish tracked Get Smokin the entire trip, and despite a relatively mild pace, wore down the frontrunner in the stretch to get the win and finish the 7 1/2-furlongs in a quick final time of 1:28.25.
“We wanted to give him a chance today to see what kind of horse he was,” said winning trainer Saffie Joseph, Jr. “The Lightners, Shooting Star, picked this horse and they're so good at picking horses. It's good to get this one. We're blessed and thankful for the opportunities. Paco gave him the perfect trip and he's been high on this horse since he won, so kudos for him.”
Island Commish is one of two winners from as many to race from his dam Bide a Wee Island, a winning half-sister to four-time graded-stakes winning turf sprinter Something Extra and to SW Ciuri. He was bred by Julia Rice.