The classy Red Lead returned to his old form with a rousing one and one-quarter length victory in the $50,000 Curribot Handicap at Sunland Park Racetrack and Casino on Sunday.
The seven-year-old gelding found a burst of energy in the final furlong to defeat a very solid field of stakes winners at his favorite racetrack. Under jockey Enrique Gomez, Red Lead was forwardly placed down the backstretch racing closely with Global Stage and Hurricane Lake. The multiple stakes winner launched his attack on the second turn and opened up a lead passing the quarter mile marker.
Red Lead set sail for home in upper stretch putting away a fast closing Hurricane Lake and Global Stage. The 4-1 shot collected his sixth victory over Sunland Park soil and his 11th overall for trainer Chris Hartman. The son of Red Bullet earned $30,000 for owner Joey K. Davis. His career bankroll has swelled past the $725,000 mark. Red Lead has been a gem of consistency over the last few years at Sunland Park winning and placing frequently in stakes races. The winning time for the one and one-sixteenth miles was 1:42.84.
Hurricane Lake found his best strides too late and had to settle for second. The veteran stakes gelding was closing with interest but ran out of real estate under jockey Alfredo Juarez, Jr. He finished a good third in the Winsham Lad Handicap last month.
Ruidoso Thoroughbred Championship winner Global Stage made an eye catching middle move and was on par with the leaders at the midway point. He managed to split both Red Lead and Warren’s Knockout but could not seal the deal. He and jockey Ken Tohill finished third, beaten less than 2 lengths.
A stubborn Warren’s Knockout wound up fourth after battling with the winner for much of the race. Ol Winedrinker Who, Watch Me Go and Vamoose rounded out the order of finish. Live racing resumes on Tuesday at 12:25 p.m.