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Nov 11, 2011

Easy win for Mucho Macho Man in return


Ozone Park, NY (Sports Network) - Former Triple Crown contender Mucho Macho Man made a successful return to the races Wednesday at Aqueduct. The three- year-old was making his first start since the Belmont Stakes.

Starting in an optional/allowance race for trainer Kathy Ritvo, the colt quickly took the lead out of the gate and set the pace the entire way in the mile event. Ridden by Ramon Dominguez, Mucho Macho Man covered the distance in 1:34.72 on a fast track after getting very little pressure.

Mucho Macho Man finished 5 3/4-lengths to the good over Gallant Fields followed by Praetereo, Southern Ride, More Than a Reason and an eased Silent Money.

Mucho Macho Man returned $4.90, $3.10 and $2.60. Gallant Fields paid $4.90 and $3.50, Praetereo paid $3.50 to show.

"After the Belmont, we wanted to give him time off," said Dean Reeves, whose Reeves Thoroughbred Partnership owns the colt with Dream Team One Racing Stable. "The Triple Crown was a tough campaign and we knew we wanted to give him two-three months off.

"Most trainers told me if you take two months off it takes two months to get back, so about in mid-August he started back training (in Saratoga) with jogs, gallops up to his breezes. He developed a little soreness so we backed off, then brought him to Belmont. Then he started breezing and we began to dial in on a race; he went a strong five-furlongs and began building a foundation, and then six- and seven-furlong works."

The win in the $55,000 race was worth $33,000 to bring Mucho Macho Man's career bankroll to $643,643. As a two-year-old he was second in both the Nashua and Remsen Stakes to put him in the 2011 Kentucky Derby discussion.

This year the colt began with a fourth in the Holy Bull Stakes as the 2-1 favorite. He followed by winning the Risen Star and finished a close third as the 3-2 favorite in the Louisiana Derby.

Mucho Macho Man was 9-1 in the Run for the Roses where he finished third followed by a sixth in the Preakness and a well beaten seventh in the Belmont Stakes.

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