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Mar 28, 2008

Adriano rebounds to win Lane's End Stakes


Florence, KY (Sports Network) - Adriano, making his first start since a poor performance at Gulfstream Park, raced down the middle of the track to capture Saturday's $500,000 Lane's End Stakes at Turfway Park. The 1 1/8 mile race is a major stepping stone to the Kentucky Derby on Saturday, May 3.

Adriano, the 9-2 third choice, broke well from the starting gate, as did the entire 11-horse field, and quickly moved into fourth place heading into the backstretch. Leading the field up the backstretch was Duke of de Buqe along with Rich Young Ruler. Racing in third was Chitoz.

Approaching the half-mile pole Rich Young Ruler took over the lead with Adriano and jockey Edgar Prado on the outside moving into second. Also on the outside was Cannonball taking over third place.

Coming out of the final turn Adriano had the lead with 7-2 second choice Racecar Rhapsody now in second. Down the stretch Adriano opened his lead to about four lengths. Prado began to put the brakes on and his mount won by 2 1/2 lengths over the 3-1 favorite Halo Najib.

The time for the Lane's End Stakes was 1:50.20 on Turfway Park's synthetic surface.

Rounding out the order of finish was Medjool, Racecar Rhapsody, Chitoz, Cannonball, Macho Again, Turf War, El Aleman, Rich Young Ruler and Duke of de Buqe. Halo's King was a scratch.

Adriano is owned by Courtlandt Farms and trained by Graham Motion. Saturday's win was worth $300,000 to bring the chestnut colt's career earnings to $402,700.

"This is a very proud moment," said owner Donald Adams of Courtlandt Farms. "We've been in the business a long time and we haven't had major success. Days like this make up for the lean years. He's very, very big and he's just starting to grow into himself. He has that stride that just eats up the ground. Edgar (Prado) rode a beautiful race."

The three-year-old has now won three of seven lifetime starts and is expected to be pointed toward the Kentucky Derby.

"I need to speak to Mr. Adams," Motion said about Adriano going to the Run for the Roses. "I think we all agree that he's probably more of a turf horse, but the Lexington is something we will definitely consider. I'll be speaking to him (Adams) over the next few days. The horse showed that on his day he can be brilliant. I thought another key was that he was very good in the paddock. He's very hot-blooded. In the Fountain of Youth, he kind of fell apart that day. The fact that he was good today made a big difference."

Adriano was coming off a disappointing ninth place finish in last month's Fountain of Youth Stakes at Gulfstream Park.

Adriano returned $11.60, $6.40 and $4.60. Halo Najib paid $5.40 and $4.00, and Medjool paid $4.80 to show.

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