Employing stalking tactics not previously seen, Promises Fulfilled got first run at the blazing Strike Power approaching the quarter pole and easily fended off a late bid from the favored Engage to post a 3 1/4-length victory in the $200,000 Amsterdam (G3) at Saratoga on Saturday.
Under Luis Saez, Promises Fulfilled rated in second through splits of :21.28 and :43.92. He finished up 6 1/2 furlongs in 1:15.18 over a fast track and paid $5 for owner Robert Baron and trainer Dale Romans.
“We always tried to send him [to the front], but today, we decided to try and do something different and it worked,” Saez said. “If somebody else wanted to go to the lead, we would just stay there.
“I knew Strike Power was very fast. I know that horse. I rode him a few times and I knew he was going to be sent. He came in with that mentality, to go to the lead. I know they all have the same mentality to go to the lead, but the point where I saw Strike Power, I took him back and made my move. When we came into the stretch and I saw Engage, I knew to let him go.”
Engage finished 9 1/4 lengths clear of Barry Lee, who had a neck on Strike Power. Soutache and Old Time Revival completed the order of finish.
Opening his account with back-to-back wins at Churchill Downs and Keeneland last fall, Promises Fulfilled finished third in his stakes debut, the Kentucky Jockey Club (G2). Wire-to-wire winner of the Fountain of Youth (G2) in his season debut, he was subsequently last of nine in the Florida Derby (G1), 15th in the Kentucky Derby (G1) and third in the Woody Stephens (G2), all after setting the pace. Now likely for the August 25 H. Allen Jerkens (G1) over seven furlongs, his record now stands at 8-4-0-2, $495,280.
Bred in Kentucky by David Jacobs, Promises Fulfilled is by Shackleford and out of the Grade 3-placed Marquee Deliver, by Marquetry. He’s a half-brother to multiple stakes winner Marquee Miss and to the stakes-placed Marquee Cal Gal. He sold for $37,000 at Keeneland September.