Gulfstream park

Twilight Eclipse sets turf record


Twilight Eclipse won the Pan American Stakes by two lengths at Gulfstream, breaking a world record for 1 1/2 miles on turf.

Special to The Miami Herald

Twilight Eclipse set a world record for 1 1/2 miles on turf on Saturday as he unleashed a powerful stretch run and beat Ioya Bigtime by two lengths in the $150,000 Pan American Stakes (Grade 2) at Gulfstream Park.

Twilight Eclipse, a 4-year-old gelding, was ridden by Javier Castellano and won in 2:22.63.

It came on a turf course listed as firm. In fact, it was hard and dry with some dirt kicking up — a surface that trainer Tom Albertrani feels is best for Twilight Eclipse.

Racing databases show that he broke the world record of 2:22.72 that Brught Thought set in winning the San Luis Rey (G2) at Santa Anita Park on March 16.

“I was just happy to win the race,” Albertrani said. “But a track record here and a world record is just amazing.”

The previous Gulfstream course record of 2:23.07 was set by the mare Honey Ryder in the 2006 Orchid Handicap.

The win Saturday was the fourth in eight career starts for Twilight Eclipse, who is owned by West Point Thoroughbreds.

Last Nov.24, Twilight Eclipse won the W.L. McKnight (Grade 2) at 1 1/2 miles on a firm turf course at Calder Casino & Race Course.

On Feb. 16, he finished fourth in the Mac Diarmida (Grade 2) at 1 3/8 miles on a Gulfstream turf course listed as good. But Albertrani and several other trainers said it was soft in some spots following rain that morning.

Twilight Eclipse, at 5-1, was the fourth betting choice in the 10-horse Pan American field.

He raced in fourth place through the first mile, with Ioya Bigtime and Teaks North battling for the lead and setting a fast pace.

Ioya Bigtime led after a mile in the fast time of 1:35.32.

Twilight Eclipse then began gaining on the outside and pulled away to his victory. Newsdad, the 8-5 favorite, finished third.

“I congratulated Tom and told him that his horse looked like he was running downhill,” said Henry Collazo, the trainer of Mucho Mas Macho, who finished fifth on Saturday.

“Tom had the surface he wanted,” Collazo said. “It was hard to beat Twilight Eclipse [Saturday], and he is tough on any day.”

Mucho Mas Macho finished second by 1 3/4 lengths in the McKnight.

On Jan. 12, he won the Fort Lauderdale (Grade 2) at 41-1 odds. On Saturday, he was sent off at 6-1.

Racing Schedule

Gulfstream will have 11 races Sunday, with no stakes. First post time is 1:05 p.m.

Next Saturday, Gulfstream will have the $1 million Florida Derby (Grade 1) at 1 1/8 miles on dirt for 3-year-olds.

The trainers of 2013 Gulfstream stars Itsmyluckyday, Orb and Shanghai Bobby are planning to run those horses in the Florida Derby.

Itsmyluckyday won the one-mile Gulfstream Park Derby on Jan. 1 and the 1 1/16-mile Holy Bull (Grade 3) on Jan. 23. Shanghai Bobby finished second in the Holy Bull.

Orb won the 1 1/16-mile Fountain of Youth (Grade 2) on Feb. 23.

All three are in the top five on many racing analysts’ lists of contenders for the Kentucky Derby in Louisville, Ky., on May 4. Gulfstream will have six other stakes races on Florida Derby Day, including the $300,000 Gulfstream Park Oaks (Grade 2) at 1 1/8 miles on dirt for 3-year-old fillies.

First post time is 12:30 p.m.

Read more Horse Racing stories from the Miami Herald

Get your Miami Heat Fan Gear!

Join the

The Miami Herald is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere on the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

The Miami Herald uses Facebook's commenting system. You need to log in with a Facebook account in order to comment. If you have questions about commenting with your Facebook account, click here.

Have a news tip? You can send it anonymously. Click here to send us your tip - or - consider joining the Public Insight Network and become a source for The Miami Herald and el Nuevo Herald.

Hide Comments

This affects comments on all stories.

Cancel OK

  • Marketplace

Today's Circulars

  • Quick Job Search

Enter Keyword(s) Enter City Select a State Select a Category