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Oct 05, 2012

Game On Dude back on top in NTRA Poll


New York, NY (Sports Network) - Following two weeks away from the throne, Game On Dude has reclaimed first-place in the NTRA National Thoroughbred Poll. The 5-year-old gelding was able to bounce back with a commanding win in the Awesome Again Stakes.

Trained by Bob Baffert, Game On Dude captured Saturday's stakes at Santa Anita by 3 1/4 lengths, a month after finishing second to Dullahan in the Pacific Classic. The gelding was rewarded with 14 top votes and 408 points.

"This horse is just getting better and better, and when he gets on dirt, he's a different horse," noted Baffert.

Dropping to second was Woodbine Mile winner Wise Dan, who was idle over the weekend. Nominated to this week's Shadwell Mile, the 5-year-old gelding picked up 13 first-place votes and 388 points.

Returning to the top 10 in the third spot is Royal Delta off her 9 1/2 length victory Saturday in the Beldame at Belmont Park. The 4-year-old filly garnered four top votes and 276 points.

"She ran a super race -- broke well, took it to the horse on the lead and she was the best today. Just a very impressive performance," trainer Bill Mott said about Saturday's Beldame win.

Also entering the top 10 is turf runner Point of Entry. Off his win in Belmont's Joe Hirsch Turf Classic, the 4-year-old colt received two first- place votes and 250 points to bounce up to fourth.

"We'll go out there (to Santa Anita Park for the Breeders' Cup Turf) and catch a firm turf out there, and I think they'll really see what he can do," Point of Entry's trainer Shug McGaughey said.

Retired 3-year-old I'll Have Another gained a spot to fifth with 12 top votes and 217 points.

Mucho Macho Man, idle over the weekend, is sixth with 165 points. He is followed in the voting by Jockey Club Gold Cup winner Flat Out (139), Fort Larned (1, 111), My Miss Aurelia (1, 109) and Ron the Greek (85).

Both Dullahan and Acclamation fell out of the top 10. Dullahan is scheduled to start Saturday in the Jamaica Stakes on the grass at Belmont Park.

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