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Oct 05, 2007

Hard Spun defeats Street Sense in Kentucky Cup Classic


Florence, KY (Sports Network) - Hard Spun, second in the Kentucky Derby, turned the tables on Derby winner Street Sense in winning Saturday's $350,000 Kentucky Cup Classic at Turfway Park. It was the first time Hard Spun finished in front of his rival in three races.

Hard Spun and Street Sense were sent off as 4-5 co-favorites in the four horse field. Breaking from the inside post Hard Spun immediately took the lead at the start and never looked back.

With Mario Pino in the saddle, Hard Spun repulsed the challenge of Street Sense down the stretch and went on to win by 1 1/4 lengths. Finishing third was Stream Cat with Cat Shaker fourth. The field was reduced to four when Muqbil was scratched by trainer Duane Knipe.

The time for the 1 1/8 miles was 1:48.48 on the all-weather surface.

Owned by Rick Porter, Hard Spun finally got the best of Street Sense. After finishing second in the Run for the Roses, Hard Spun was third in the Preakness Stakes when Street Sense was second to Curlin. Curlin had been third in the Kentucky Derby.

Hard Spun, trained by Larry Jones, has won his last two starts, including the King's Bishop Stakes at Saratoga. He was fourth in the Belmont Stakes and finished second to Any Given Saturday in the Haskell Invitational at Monmouth Park.

"I think our horse contained himself as long as he could," said Jones. "He was ready to go. We knew that with the pace scenario, we wanted to make Street Sense chase us. There are probably at least 90-percent of horses out there that couldn't do what he's done. We know that Monmouth is a speed favoring track, so we thought the King's Bishop was a good spot, and this race also fit well. He liked the seven furlongs (of the King's Bishop) and all we had to do was back off him a little bit and sharpen him up."

Hard Spun collects $210,000 for the Kentucky Cup Classic, his second victory at Turfway Park where he won the Lane's End Stakes in March. His career earnings are now $1.6 million with seven wins in 12 lifetime starts.

Hard Spun returned $3.80 and $2.10, and Street Sense paid $2.10. There was no show wagering due to the short field.

Hard Spun and Street Sense are both expected to run in the $5 million Breeders' Cup Classic at Monmouth Park on Saturday, October 27.

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