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Mar 18, 2011

Uncle Mo and Giant Oak continue to lead

By: SPORTS NETWORK


New York, NY (Sports Network) - Eclipse Award winner Uncle Mo solidified his place as the leading three-year-old and Donn Handicap champ Giant Oak stayed in the lead in the latest NTRA Polls.

Uncle Mo, owned by Mike Repole, remained undefeated in his four race career as he began his 2011 season Saturday by winning the Timely Writer Stakes at Gulfstream Park. For the victory the colt received 18 of 19 first-place votes and 188 points. He increased his advantage to 32 points over Soldat.

"He knows what he's here for," Repole said following Saturday's win. "He's just one of those special horses. I've said it many times, 'Good horses know they're good.' He knows he's good. He's a monster on the racetrack and he's a puppy dog in the stall."

Trained by Todd Pletcher, Uncle Mo will make his next start in the Wood Memorial at Aqueduct on April 9.

"He was the (Kentucky) Derby favorite going in," Pletcher noted after the victory, "and he's the Derby favorite coming out."

Fountain of Youth Stakes winner Soldat picked up the remaining first-place vote, but fell to 156 points to keep the second spot.

Dialed In held on to third in the poll with 110 points. He finished second in an allowance race at Gulfstream Park on Sunday, March 6.

Completing the three-year-old poll are Mucho Macho Man (102), Premier Pegasus (97), Stay Thirsty (94), To Honor and Serve (43), The Factor (36), Flashpoint (31) and Gourmet Dinner (27).

Premier Pegasus entered the poll after winning Saturday's San Felipe Stakes at Santa Anita Park.

Five-year-old Giant Oak continues to lead a hotly contested national poll. The veteran runner received seven first-place votes and 150 points.

Santa Anita Handicap winner Game On Dude remains in second-place with one top vote and 124 points.

Entering the poll in third-place is Tackleberry off his win in the Gulfstream Park Handicap. The gelding garnered one first-place vote and 115 points.

Uncle Mo advanced from sixth to fourth. The three-year-old notched five top votes and 99 points.

Twirling Candy fell to fifth from third with 76 points. The four-year-old is the only horse in the top eight not to receive a first-place vote.

Three-time Eclipse Award winner Gio Ponti also fell two spots to sixth, The six-year-old again received two first-place votes and 70 points.

Breeders' Cup Sprint champ Big Drama is seventh with a single top vote and 65 points.

Goldikova, three-time winner of the Breeders' Cup Mile, got the remaining two first-place votes and 42 points, good for eighth.

Soldat is ninth with 31 points and Misremembered rounds out the top 10 with 27 points.



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