Sagamore Farm’s Humble and Hungry swept to the lead in midstretch and cruised to a 1 1/4-length victory over Wilkinson to win the eighth running of the $111,200 Commonwealth Turf (Grade III) for 3-year-olds at Churchill Downs.
Trained by Ignacio Correas IV and ridden by Jose Lezcano, Humble and Hungry was content to race in fourth place in the field of seven as Live in Joy led the field through fractions of :23.53, :48.49 and 1:14.15 over a yielding Matt Winn Turf Course.
Leaving the far turn, Lezcano swung Humble and Hungry four wide and easily moved past Live in Joy, Perregaux and Silver Medallion and was geared down by Lezcano as he cruised to the finish line.
Humble and Hungry, a Kentucky-bred son of Limehouse out of the Langfuhr mare Cukee, ran the 1 1/16 miles in 1:45.24. The victory was worth $67,567 and increased the winner’s bankroll to $168,727 with a record of 2-3-4 in 10 races.In his only previous start at Churchill Downs, Humble and Hungry had finished eighth behind Team Valor’s Pluck in last fall’s $1 million Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf (GII). Pluck had been scheduled to run in the Commonwealth Turf, but was a late scratch from what would have been his first race since early April.
Humble and Hungry returned mutuels of $24.60, $7.20 and $3. Wilkinson, ridden by Garrett Gomez, returned $4.40 and $2.80 with Silver Medallion finishing third another half-length back under John Velazquez and paying $2.80 to show.
Completing the field in order were Perregaux, Salto (IRE), Chalice and Live in Joy. Along with Pluck, late scratches from the Commonwealth Turf included Twinspired, Suntracer and also-eligibles Will’s Wildcat, Fleet Beat and Friends Place.
The 28th Breeders’ Cup World Championships begin their two-day, 15-race run Friday with six championship races. First post time for the 10-race program is 2 p.m. (ET) with the first Breeders’ Cup race, the Sentient Jet Juvenile Sprint, scheduled for 4:10 p.m.
COMMONWEALTH TURF QUOTES
Jose Lezcano, jockey of Humble and Hungry (winner) – “The horses in front of us were going at a pretty good pace for how soft the turf was today. We were able to wait and then I asked him at the quarter pole and I knew he was going to win. He really took off the final sixteenth of a mile. I think he really liked the soft going.”
Bob Feld, representative of Sagamore Farm, owner of Humble and Hungry (winner) – “He was super impressive. Rarely do you see a horse win geared down like that in a Grade III. (Jose) Lezcano suggested that we take the blinkers off and that helped and he also got the perfect trip. This is a huge move forward and could be a turning point in his career.”
Olivier Peslier, jockey of Salto-IRE (fifth as beaten 2-1 favorite) – “He started just OK and we had to stay behind horses early on. When we got to the top of the stretch, he just couldn’t accelerate.”