|High Cotton's Currency Swap comes home a winner in the $250,000 Hopeful S. (G1) -photo Adam Coglianese
Currency Swap's big closing move in the $250,000 Hopeful S. (G1) proved too much for the lone front-runner Trinniberg as the 2-year-old son of High Cotton willed his way to a 3/4-length win in the feature race on the card on the final day of the Saratoga meet (VIDEO
The winner's check of $150,000 puts High Cotton in the top 5 on the freshman sire list, with progeny earnings of $341,272. He is one of only five first-year sires with a graded stakes winner and is also the sire of Tarpy's Goal, third in the Grade 2 Futurity S. at Belmont Park.
The seven furlong Hopeful looked like a one-horse race for a while as Trinniberg was alone out front and relishing the sloppy conditions. Currency Swap moved from fourth to second while three-wide on the turn. Coming into the stretch, the leader was resolute, but Currency Swap was going the better of the two, and wore down his foe for his second victory in as many starts.
“I was so excited I thought I was going to pass out,” said winning trainer Teresa Pompay, who was also collecting her first Grade 1 victory. “It’s been exciting and fun because I knew I was bringing a good horse. This horse is so special. I’m so proud of him that he came through.”
Currency Swap debuted a month ago at Saratoga, winning by six lengths and earning a 98 Beyer Speed Figure, one of the highest 2-year-old figures of 2011. The Hopeful win raises his lifetime earnings to $180,000.
“This is just the start, because now we can go forward from here,” Pompay added. “Obviously we’d like to do the Breeders’ Cup. I think this horse is going to get better as he gets older, and I think he’ll like the added distance as well.”
The win also earned the Klaravich Stables and William Lawrence colorbearer an automatic berth in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (G1) at Churchill Downs in November as part of the “Win and You’re In” series.
“It’s been a long time between Grade 1s for us,” said Klaravich owner Seth Klarman, noting his last Grade 1 winner was Subordination in the 1998 Eddie Read at Del Mar. “We were excited about this horse before he even ran. We’ll see how he comes out. Logically, the next spot would be the Champagne (Grade 1, Oct. 8, Belmont Park).”