Wildcat Red romps to Hutcheson Stakes victory

The Associated Press

HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. (AP) -- Wildcat Red took the lead coming out of the final turn and romped to a 4 3/4-length victory over C. Zee in the $200,000 Hutcheson Stakes for 3-year-olds at Gulfstream Park on Saturday.

Ridden by Javier Castellano, Wildcat Red won the Grade 2 seven-furlong race in 1:22.21 and paid $6.00, $3.80 and $2.60.

Trainer Jose Garoffalo expects Wildcat Red's next race will be the $400,000 Fountain of Youth Stakes at Gulfstream on Feb. 22. That Grade 2 race is 1 1/16 miles, the longest yet for Wildcat Red.

''That's the plan for now, hopefully,'' Garoffalo said. ''We'll have to see how he comes out of this race. We think he can go longer.''

Garoffalo, a native of Venezuela, has his horses stabled at Gulfstream.

Wildcat Red would be the first horse that he has run in a Kentucky Derby prep race.

''Every trainer in the country gets Kentucky Derby fever this time of year,'' Garoffalo said.

Wildcat Red has crossed the finish line first in four of his five races.

In the Hutcheson, he was in second place by a half-length after a half mile, behind Gambler's Ghost.

Wildcat Red then pulled even before taking the lead and pulling away with apparent ease.

C. Zee raced in third place most of the way and finished a half-length ahead of Pablo Del Monte.

Gambler's Ghost faded and finished last.

In the co-feature, Wicked Tune beat Travelin Man by three-quarters of a length in the $75,000 Gulfstream Park Turf Sprint. Covering the five furlongs in 56.98 seconds under jockey Elvis Trujillo, he paid $21.40, $10.20 and $6.40.

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