Juvenile champ Hansen is back in the swing of things on the road to Kentucky Derby 2012 after taking a bite out of the Big Apple in Saturday’s Grade 3 Gotham Stakes at Aqueduct.
G3 Gotham Stakes (3-3-12): 95 BSF (Hansen)
Hansen did everything right in the Gotham Stakes and Ramon Dominguez gave him a great ride. He relaxed beautifully from an outer post and was much the best over My Adonis, who was well clear of rallying show finisher Finnegans Wake. 4th place finisher Tiger Walk broke from post 13 and just missed rounding out the trifecta.
I have never been a huge Hansen fan in regards to ten furlong success on the first Saturday in May but he did was he was supposed to do at the Big A on March 3. He removed the hood, tracked the pace, and easily toppled a modest group. That has been a recurring theme on the Derby trail so far. Alpha, El Padrino, Hansen, and Union Rags have all captured graded races against suspect company. El Padrino has been running the fastest races and Union Rags wins the visually impressive reward. Alpha and Hansen are chugging right along and it will be interesting to see what happens when the aforementioned sophomore leaders face better company at nine furlongs and beyond.
Gotham Stakes Grade: B