American St. Leger: Jakkalberry Strikes

ARLINGTON HEIGHTS--The unusual distance of 1 11/16 miles on the Arlington grass featured a rather usual result: a horse coming from across the Atlantic winning a distance grass race. A non-American horse who got the picture taken was JAKKALBERRY, a six year old by Storming Home.

Local horse IOYA BIGTIME cut out a soft pace of :50.82 and 1:15.43 for the opening half and three-quarters. He held the lead for nearly all three of the turns, before JAKKALBERRY, in midpack for most of the race, took the lead at the stretch call. He turned on the gas and kicked away for a 2 1/4 length margin of victory. IOYA BIGTIME held well for second, 6 1/4 lengths to the good of ZUIDER ZEE. Another European-based horse, LAKE DROP, was fourth.

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JAKKALBERRY takes the first of the major stakes. Photo from Four Footed Photos.

JAKKALBERRY, the 8-5 favorite, paid $5.20 to win. The connections of JAKKALBERRY don't expect to return to the US again for a Breeders' Cup tilt, insteading planning a run at the two-mile Melbourne Cup in Australia as their long-term fall objective. Winning rider Colm O' Donoghue complemented JAKKALBERRY, as he "gave me a lot of confidence rating him".

Third place finisher ZUIDER ZEE, however, told a different tale. He felt that "tight turns are not ideal for him and he's better with a little more cut in the ground."

Look for fourth place finisher LAKE DROP to aim towards the Breeders' Cup Marathon, according to trainer H. Graham Motion.

JAKKALBERRY's win led a parade of formful intraresults. The top four choices in the wagering--JAKKALBERRY, IOYA BIGTIME, ZUIDER ZEE, and LAKE DROP compromised the superfecta that paid $8.20 for a dime.  The trifecta paid $16.00 for fifty cents and the exacta paid $19.40 for two dollars.

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