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Apr 24, 2015

Shared Belief eased as Moreno wins Charles Town Classic


Charles Town, WV ( - Leading racehorse Shared Belief was eased along the backstretch during the running of Saturday's $1.5 million Charles Town Classic allowing rival Moreno to win the 1 1/8-mile event at Charles Town Races.

Shared Belief, coming off a decisive victory last month in the Santa Anita Handicap, was the 1-5 favorite for the seventh running of the Charles Town Classic. The 4-year-old gelding faced eight challengers in what was expected to be his 11th win in 12 career starts.

However, Shared Belief got a poor start as the field began the race on the backstretch of Charles Town's six-furlong track. Hall of Fame jockey Mike Smith had Shared Belief racing well back in eighth as the field went under the wire for the first time.

Apparently Shared Belief encountered problems forcing Smith to pull him up on the backstretch.

The poor perfomance of Shared Belief opened the door for 7-1 third pick Moreno, third last year, to take control as the field left the backstretch. Ridden by Cornelio Velasquez, Moreno drove through the stretch on his way to posting a two-length win over last year's Classic winner Imperative.

Moreno won the Classic in track record time of 1:48.81.

"He's a speed horse," trainer Eric Guillot said about Moreno. "You don't want to hit him hard, he gets mad. He's a pretty smart horse. You have to stay busy on him."

Page Mckenney was third and Vyjack fourth followed by 5-1 second pick General a Rod, Looking Cool, Street Babe and Warrioroftheroses.

Owned by Southern Equine Stable, Moreno had been second to Shared Belief in the Santa Anita Handicap on March 7 and just three weeks ago was third in the New Orleans Handicap as the 6-5 favorite.

The 5-year-old gelding earned $852,000 for the win and has four wins from 25 lifetime starts for $2,886,940.

Moreno returned $16.00, $12.00 and $23.20. Imperative paid $41.60 and $71.20, and Page Mckenney paid $45.60 to show.

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