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McCarthy takes Gold Cup on Hot Rize
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Willie McCarthy took Holston Hall’s Hot Rize to the lead before the final fence of the $75,000 Virginia Gold Cup and fought off a determined challenge by Organisateur to win by three-quarters of a length before a capacity crowd at Great Meadow Race Course in The Plains, Va., on Saturday, May 3.Kinross Farm’s Old Timer finished third in Virginia’s richest race, and 2013 winner Grinding Speed took the fourth spot in the 89th running of the four-mile timber classic. Hot Rize ran the distance in 9:20.80 on ground rated as good.For the second year, the Virginia Gold Cup offered pari-mutuel wagering on its races, and Hot Rize paid $23.40 to win. That payoff approximated his program-line odds of 10-1, largely based on his winless record over the year since his sixth-place finish behind Grinding Speed last year.Still, Hot Rize had been close to the winner’s circle.