Mucho Mas Macho, a 41-1 long shot, passed eight horses in the final 100 yards and beat 19-1 shot Tiz Sardonic Joe by a neck Saturday in the $100,000 Fort Lauderdale Stakes (Grade 2) at Gulfstream Park.
Big Blue Kitten finished third, a length behind Tiz Sardonic Joe, in the 1 1/16-mile turf stakes for 4-year-olds and up. Nikki’s Sandcastle, the 2-1 favorite, came in fourth in the 10-horse field.
Mucho Mas Macho’s win was the first in a graded stakes and first in a Gulfstream stakes for his trainer Henry Collazo.
It was followed by an emotional scene in and near the winner’s circle as friends congratulated Collazo, who has won numerous nongraded stakes at Calder Casino & Race Course.
Mucho Mas Macho finished second in the W.L. McKnight Handicap on Nov. 24 at Calder. He was a 39-1 shot in that 1 1/2-mile turf stakes.
Last Sept, 15, Mucho Mas Macho won the 1 1/16-mile Needles Stakes on turf at Calder.
But bettors overlooked him in the Fort Lauderdale, which had six entrants who had finished third or better in graded-turf stakes in Northern states or in Ontario
But Mucho Mas Macho’s win was not a surprise to Collazo.
“There was a lot of speed in this race,” Collazo said of an expected pace that would help his horse’s late-running style
On Saturday, Fifty Proof led through a fast half mile of 46.99 seconds. Mucho Mas Macho was in ninth place, nine lengths back.
Jockey Juan Leyva then took Mucho Mas Macho to the outside for his stretch run. They won in the solid time of 1:40.79.
Mucho Mas Macho, a 4-year-pld gelding, is a son of Macho Uno.
Collazo said his next race will probably be the $150,000 Mac Diarmida Handicap (Grade 2) at 1 3/8 miles on turf at Gulfstream on Feb. 16.
The odds on Mucho Mas Macho will almost certainly be lower than 41-1.
The $2 exacta payoff was $1,322,60 for Mucho Mas Macho and Tiz Sardonic Joe
Mucho Mas Macho’s win led to big payoffs in the multiple race bets.
The Pick 6 paid $20,788.94. It is a 10-cent-only bet, with multiple horses permitted in each race.
There were multiple winners, and thus there will be a carryover of $201,347 on Sunday when it will be combined with the day’s Pick 6 bets.
Gulfstream pays out the entire Pick 6 pool including the carryover only on days when there is just one winning ticket.
When there are multiple winners, such as on Friday, they divide 60 percent of the day’s new bets. The other 40 percent goes into the carryover.
Csaba turned in one of the Gulfstream meet’s top showings on Dec. 16 when he won the 1 1/16-mile Harlan’s Holiday Stakes by 3 3/4 lengths over Delegation
They will be back at Gulfstream on Sunday and will be among the favorites in the $100,000 Hal’s Hope Stakes (Grade 3). It is a one-turn mile on dirt for 4-year-olds and up.
The Hal’s Hope’s 10-horse field also includes Soldat and Pants on Fire, two horses that in 2011 won Kentucky Derby preps and later ran in that race.
Csaba won the Harlan’s Holiday in a fast time of 1:43.51. It was his third consecutive stakes win, following two at Calder.
Luis Saez rode Csaba (pronounced “Chabuh”) in those three races and has the mount again for trainer Phil Gleaves.