By Jim Freer
Gunnevera, a colt that is stabled at Gulfstream Park West (Calder), finished second to West Coast on Saturday in the $1.25 million Travers (Grade 1) at Saratoga Race Course in Saratoga Springs, N.Y.
West Coast, trained by Bob Baffert and ridden by Mike Smith, led almost the entire 1 ¼ mile race and won in 2:01.19 on the track listed as Fast.
NOTE– Home page photo, from Blood-Horse, is West Coast crossing the Travers finish line
Gunnevera, known for his closing style, was 11th in the 12-horse field after a half mile.
With Edgard Zayas riding, he rallied to come in second–3 ½ lengths behind West Coast. Irap finished third, 2 ¼ lengths behind Gunnevera.
Mario Gutierrez, the rider of Irap, claimed a foul against Zayas for alleged interference in the stretch and there was a stewards’ inquiry into the bumping incident. The stewards let the result stand.
Odds on the first three finishers were: West Coast 6-1, Gunnevera 25-1 and Irap 5-1.
Gunnevera is trained by Antonio Sano, who trains year-round in South Florida. The owner of Gunnevera is Margoth, whose principal Salomon Del Valle lives in Venezuela.
Gunnevera, a son of Dialed In, this year at Gulfstream Park won the Fountain of Youth (Grade 2) and finished third in the Florida Derby (Grade 1).
He later finished seventh in the Kentucky Derby (Grade 1) and fifth in the Preakness.
On Monday, we will have a follow-up report on Gunnevera along with information on how other horses with Florida connections fared in the Travers and in other stakes on Saturday at Saratoga.
3 -WEST COAST 14.20 7.60 5.30
11 -GUNNEVERA 18.40 10.40
10 -IRAP 5.40
$2 EXACTA 3-11 PAID $357.50; $2 SUPERFECTA 3-11-10-4 PAID $14,329.00; $2 TRIFECTA 3-11-10 PAID $2,245.00