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Demonstrative jumps up to win Kiser Stakes at Saratoga

Posted: July 26, 2012 2:25 p.m.
Updated: July 27, 2012 5:00 a.m.

Patiently biding his time near the back of 10-horse field in Thursday’s $75,000 Jonathan Kiser Memorial Novice Stakes, Robbie Walsh pulled the trigger at the right time as Demonstrative carried him to victory in the first steeplechase of the 2012 Saratoga meet.
Trained by Richard Valentine for George Ohrstrom, the 2010 National Steeplechase Association  3-year-old champion used a big jump at the final fence to overtake pace-setting Baltic Shore (Willie McCarthy) before holding off Wanganui (Paddy Young) who was two lengths behind in second followed by Baltic Shore.
The winning time for the 2 1/16-mile chase over firm, but wet ground, was a track record 3:42.65. Demonstrative, which finished second in this race a year ago, paid $32.20, $14 and $7.70.
High Hope Stables’ Baltic Shore, which is trained in Camden by Arch Kingsley and is owned, in part, by Sue and George Sensor of Camden, went to the lead from the drop of the flag while setting a brisk, yet honest pace. Winner of his first two starts this year, the 6-year-old Johar gelding was never able to get comfortable as his lead was never more than a half-length at the half-mile, mile, 1 ½ and 1 ¾-mile marks of the chase.
Baltic Shore led Demonstrative by a head as the field met the top of the stretch and maintained a slight edge as the field met the last fence. But Demonstrative used a big jump on the outside and galloped home clear of the field. Baltic Shore gave way in the stretch, finishing more than 13 lengths behind Wanganui for third place.
Jillian Johnston’s En Fuego (Xavier Aizpuru) was another 4 3/4 lengths behind in fourth in a chase in which all 190 starters came home safely.
The win for Demonstrative, which was ninth after a half mile and eighth at the mile and 1 ½-mile markers, was his fifth over fences in this country and sixth in 25 career starts. It was his first victory since taking the William Entenmann Novice Stakes at Belmont Park on July 3 of last year, six starts ago. The $45,000 payday brought his career earnings to $179,074.
The Thursday steeplechase series at Saratoga returns next Thursday with the running of the $100,000 A.P. Smithwick Memorial (Gr. I). Divine Fortune, trained by Hall of Fame conditioner Jonathan Sheppard, has won each of the previous two editions of the race which had been run as a Grade II stakes in the past and is nominated to third year’s event.
St. John’s River second at The Spa: Thursday’s second race at Saratoga, a $90,000 optional claimer on the flat, was won by Sea Island which beat 1-9 favorite St. John’s River by 3 ½ lengths.
St. John’s River, which was developed in Camden at Nancy Terhune’s barn, was making her third start of his 4-year-old campaign and first since a third in the Fleur de Lis Handicap at Churchill Downs on June 16.
The $18,000 purse raised the 2011 Kentucky Oaks runner-up’s winnings to $613,317 from 10 career starts.


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