Richard and Bertram Klein’s 5-year-old mare Cash Control slipped through an opening along the rail at the head of the stretch, grabbed the lead at the three-sixteenths pole and narrowly held on to beat stablemate Sweet Acclaim (IRE) by a head to win the 40th running of the $100,000 Old Forester Mint Julep Handicap (GIII) on Saturday at Churchill Downs.
Trained by Brad Cox – who also trains the runner-up – and ridden by Shaun Bridgmohan, Cash Control covered the 1 1/16 miles on a firm Matt Winn Turf Course in 1:41.12 while toting 118 pounds.
The Kleins won the race for the second time in four years. Their 4-year-old filly Miz Ida was victorious in the 2013 running.
Defending race champ Kiss Moon set the pace with a first quarter-mile in :23.57, a half-mile in :46.92 and three-quarters of a mile in 1:11.33 as Cash Control tracked along the inside about 4 ½ lengths behind in fourth. Zipessa grabbed the lead at the head of the stretch but an opening developed along the inside hedge and Cash Control darted through to draw even. She grabbed the lead after a long drive down the stretch and was able to withstand a late rally by Sweet Acclaim (IRE) to just miss in a photo finish that was determined by the bob of a head.
“I was very proud of both of them and honestly the way they had been training we had kind of expected it,” Cox said. “They both had been training as well as mares could train and they both showed up and ran great races.”
The victory, the third stakes victory for Cash Control this year, was worth $58,900 and increased the mare’s earnings to $343,600 with a record of 15-8-2-2. This winter, Cash Control won the $50,000 Tiffany Lass and $60,000 Daisy Devine at Fair Grounds, and was third beaten 4 ½ lengths by reigning Champion Female Turf Horse Tepin in the Churchill Distaff Turf Mile (GII) on Kentucky Derby Day.
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