Twilight Eclipse passes War Dancer to win the Grade 1 Man O' War StakesPICTURE: Jessie Holmes/EquiSport Photos
Twilight Eclipse shines
in Man O' War Stakes
Report: USA, Saturday
Belmont Park: Man O' War Stakes (Grade 1) 1m3f, 4yo+ turf
TWILIGHT ECLIPSE (Tom Albertrani/Javier Castellano) took full advantage of the absence of his nemesis Main Sequence to claim the Man O'War Stakes by a neck from War Dancer.
Twilight Eclipse finished behind Main Sequence in four successive Grade 1s last year and was run down late on by the same horse in the Grade 2 Mac Diarmida Stakes in February.
However, with no Main Sequence in opposition this time Twilight Eclipse stalked the pace set by War Dancer and wore him down in the stretch to win narrowly with Hyper three lengths away in third.
Albertrani said: "It's been very satisfying for everybody that's involved and for his connections to [finally] get that Grade 1.
"I know we've been beaten in a couple of spots but he shows up every time. I think [in previous races], the horses were just that good; you know you have horses like Main Sequence. Without a horse like [that] in the race, this horse looks like a champion himself, but to his credit he did train really well coming into this race."
Also on Saturday
Belmont Park: Ruffian Stakes (Grade 2) 1m, dirt
GODOLPHIN's Wedding Toast (Kiaran McLaughlin/Jose Lezcano) turned around the form with Princess Violet from the 7f Grade 1 Madison Stakes at Keeneland last month to run out a convincing four-length winner.
McLaughlin said: "The last couple times Jose was down on the inside and had to ask her early in the race, and they were going fast at seven furlongs. Today, I liked the race shape today and the way he rode her. She's a pretty talented filly."
The Grade 1 Ogden Phipps Stakes at Belmont on June 6 is Wedding Toast's next target according to McLaughlin.
Santa Anita: Vanity Stakes (Grade 1) 1m1f, 3yo+ fillies and mares, dirt
IN the absence of star filly Beholder, Warren's Veneda was expected to have an easy time in this but was defeated at odds on 1-10 by My Sweet Addiction (Martin Jones/Mike Smith).
Mike Smith controlled a steady pace from the front on My Sweet Addiction and said: "We controlled the speed and it was just a matter of if she was going to bring her 'A' game and she brought her A+ game today and we needed that."