Notes & Quotes From the G3 Pilgrim Stakes: Structor

(Structor gets up in time to win the G3 Pilgrim Stakes at Belmont Park / Photo Courtesy of NYRA)

From the NYRA Media Team:

Jeff Drown and Don Rachel’s Structor, patiently piloted by Irad Ortiz, Jr., stalked and pounced to a head score in Saturday’s Grade 3, $200,000 Pilgrim at Belmont Park.

Conditioned by three-time Eclipse Award-winner Chad Brown, Structor settled comfortably in fifth position in the 1 1/16-mile test for juveniles as Tuggle marked the opening quarter-mile in 23.77 seconds on a firm Widener turf course.

Jockey Irad Ortiz, Jr. — Structor (1st):

Ortiz was pleased with the trip he engineered for Structor.

“I didn’t want to go that wide, but I didn’t have any other option,” said Ortiz, Jr. “If I wanted to drop in some more, I would have to keep taking him back and I didn’t want to do that.”

Trainer Chad Brown — Structor:

Brown said a start in the Grade 1, $1 million Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf on November 1 at Santa Anita Park should suit Structor.

“I was proud of this horse [knowing] how wide he had to travel the whole way. No fault of the jockey, just his post and the way some horses wedged their way in there early. He gutted it out,” said Brown. “This was a solid pace, 47 [seconds] and change traveling three deep into the turn. To have enough to gut it out, I think he wouldn’t mind a cutback to a mile at all in the Breeders’ Cup. He’s an improving horse.”

The horse broke well today,” Gaffalione said. “I had the horse inside, Dunph, going to the lead and then (Gun It) showed a little bit of speed. When I saw they were intent on going I just tried to get him back and got him to relax. He came back to me nicely and settled well down the backside. Got a little keen going into the far turn and wanted to move a little early. But I didn’t want to take too much away from him so I tried to sit as long as I could. He was waiting on horses down the lane but I kept him at task and there was plenty of horse there.”

“Mark (Casse, the trainer) and his team have done a great job,” Gaffalione said. “They’ve had a ton of confidence in this horse the whole way. It’s just an honor to be able to ride the horse. He’s just so professional, trains great and he’s a pleasure to be around.”

Tyler Gaffalione, Rode of War of Will to victory in the G2 Risen Star Stakes at the Fair Grounds

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