(Mr Dumas wins the G3 Commonwealth Turf Stakes / Photo by Holly M. Smith)
From the Churchill Downs Media Team:
Mr Dumas ranged into contention on the final turn, grabbed the lead in the stretch and turned back a late challenge from 7-2 favorite Tracksmith to win Saturday’s 16th running of the $175,000 Commonwealth Turf (Grade III) at Churchill Downs by a half-length.
The victory gave jockey Joe Rocco Jr. his first graded stakes win in the last three years.
Joe Rocco Jr., jockey of MR DUMAS (winner): “This horse has really developed into a special horse. I was fortunate enough to get a really good trip and was able to tuck in behind the speed and it came back my way. He really has taken well to the turf and I think there are some bigger things down the road for him.”
John Ortiz, trainer of MR DUMAS (winner): “At the beginning of his career I thought he was a two-turn dirt horse. I was originally thinking a Kentucky Derby-type horse but then with the turf in his pedigree we tried him on the grass. When he ran at Kentucky Downs sprinting I never saw a horse with that fast of a closing kick. It’s been a very special journey so far and I’m very thankful for everyone involved.”
Brian Hernandez Jr., jockey of TRACKSMITH (runner-up): “He did everything right today except win. We sat in a great spot in the inside of the course with the better ground. I’m very proud of his effort and he was just second best to a nice horse.”