(Gold Street wins the Smarty Jones / Coady Photography & Courtesy of Oaklawn Park)
From the Oaklawn Park Media Team:
Of Hall of Fame trainer Steve Asmussen’s four runners in Friday’s $150,000 Smarty Jones S. at Oaklawn Park, it was his lesser-fancied Gold Street who sprang a 10-1 upset in the Kentucky Derby (G1) points race.
Track condition was a key factor. On a rainy opening day, the mud was playing favorable to speed in general, and to Mike McCarty’s Gold Street in particular. The bay had won his last two in the slop at Fair Grounds, a 6-furlong maiden and the Dec. 21 Sugar Bowl at the same sprint distance.
Gold Street was overlooked in the wagering partly because of the cache of his rivals. Aside from points-scoring stablemates Silver Prospector and Shoplifted – winners of the Kentucky Jockey Club (G2) and Remington Springboard Mile respectively – Three Technique brought a big reputation from New York for trainer Jeremiah Englehart. Three Technique went off as the slight 2-1 favorite, edging Silver Prospector, but they had to settle for second and fourth behind the front-running winner.
Under new rider Martin Garcia, Gold Street carried his speed throughout this first try around a route of ground. Lynn’s Map, who scratched from last Saturday’s Lecomte (G3) due to an unfavorable outside post, attended the pace before beginning to drop back on the far turn.
Meanwhile, Three Technique advanced into contention and loomed the only danger to the leader in the stretch. Although staying on, the favorite couldn’t get close enough to threaten Gold Street, who held sway by 2 3/4 lengths in a final time of 1:39.63 for the muddy mile.
Three Technique caught and passed the winner on the gallop-out, reinforcing the idea that he’ll move forward as the distances increase. Another 2 3/4 lengths back in third came Asmussen’s Shoplifted, followed by Silver Prospector in a belatedly rallying fourth. Lynn’s Map, Shared Sense, Lykan, Asmussen’s longshot Jungle Runner, and Nucky rounded out the order of finish.
Gold Street banked 10 points toward the Kentucky Derby while improving his resume to 6-3-2-0, $225,218. Three Technique earned 4 points in his first Derby scoring race. Shoplifted added 2 more and now has 12, and Silver Prospector’s 1 point brings up his total to 11.
Bred by Erich Brehm in Kentucky, Gold Street initially sold for $55,000 as an OBS January yearling but nearly tripled to $150,000 at his next auction appearance eight months later at Keeneland September. He is by the Street Cry stallion Street Boss and out of the stakes-placed Morakami, a daughter of 2000 Kentucky Derby winner Fusaichi Pegasus.
Trainer Steve Asmussen — Gold Street (1st):
“He ran well. The track condition certainly didn’t hurt him any, and I think he took advantage of it and did what he does best. It’s never the last race, and you have to improve off the last for the next. We hope that all of ours come back and do that after this one.”