Although headed by longshot Hollywood Talent passing the quarter pole, Monday’s $300,000 Turf Monster (G3), like several Turf Monsters before, was all about Purse Sensation.
The 3-5 favorite to win the five-furlong dash for the third year in succession and a fourth time overall, the eight-year-old gelded son of Zensational proved too classy for that erstwhile rival and others, drawing off in the stretch to win by three lengths under Paco Lopez.
Previously the winner of the Turf Monster in 2015, 2017, and 2018, Pure Sensation was winning for the seventh time in eight tries over the Parx turf course. Also a three-time winner of the Parx Dash (G3), he incurred his only local defeat, a third, in the 2018 edition of that event.
“A very special horse we are grateful to have in our stable!,” tweeted the Christophe Clement Stable after the race.
A homebred racing for Patricia Generazio, Purse Sensation paid $3.20 after completing the course in :57.80 on firm ground. Dubini, a 16-1 chance, rallied for second, while the 44-1 Hollywood Talent held on for third.
Based on previous campaigns, Pure Sensation might reappear in the $150,000 Belmont Turf Sprint on October 5, a race he’s run first and third in on two prior occasions. Pure Sensation has recorded eighth-, third-, and fifth-place finishes in the Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint (G1), but did not contest that race last season.
The Florida-bred has now bankrolled $1,968,500 from line of 35-14-5-7.
Paco Lopez capped off a big day at Parx with a game victory aboard 3-2 favorite Spun to Run in the $300,000 Smarty Jones (G3), the main local prep for the Pennsylvania Derby (G1) later this month.
Enjoying an ideal, ground-saving trip behind pacesetter Bethlehem Road, Spun to Run split rivals to reach contention turning for home, but was soon taken on by Gray Magician, who made a sweeping rally from off the pace to grab a short lead in the stretch.
Gray Magician appeared to be going the better of the two late, but Spun to Run fought back along his inside and prevailed by half a head in a time of 1:44.14 for 1 1/16 miles on a fast track. Top Line Growth was 4 1/2 lengths behind in third.
Narrowly favored over Gray Magician, Spun to Run paid $5. He’s owned by Robert Donaldson and is trained by Carlos Guerrero.
The Parx-based son of Hard Spun broke his maiden last January at Parx in his fifth career start and then dominated entry-level allowance foes two months later over the same track. He entered the July 20 Haskell Invitational (G1) off of a fourth-month layoff, and was a credible though distant third to Maximum Security in a race contested in extreme heat. Spun to Run has now compiled a record of 8-3-1-3, $360,520.
Bred in Kentucky by Sabana Farm and a $64,000 Fasig-Tipton Midlantic juvenile purchase, Spun to Run was produced by the stakes-winning Yawkey Way, by Grand Slam.
In stakes action earlier in the card, 2018 Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint (G1) runner-up Chalon earned a fifth career stakes victory in the $100,000 Roamin Rachel by 1 1/4 lengths as the odds-on choice under Paco Lopez.
Jeltrin, who captured the Davona Dale (G2) last winner and was distantly placed in the Acorn (G1) and Mother Goose (G2) this summer, dominated the $150,000 Cathryn Sophia, the main local prep for the Cotillion (G1) later this month.