Economic Model Makes the Grade in Hal’s Hope

Klaravich Stable and William H. Lawrence’s Economic Model (Flatter) won the 2016 Easy Goer S. and had placed no fewer than four times at graded level, including a runner-up effort behind champion Drefong (Gio Ponti) in that year’s GI King’s Bishop S. But if Saturday’s GIII Hal’s Hope S. is any indication, there could be much bigger and better to come for the 5-year-old, who outslugged the classy comebacker Irish War Cry (Curlin) to score by 1 3/4 lengths. The race was marred by a single-horse fall on the far turn involving Paul Pompa’s Send It In (Big Brown), who broke down in his right fore and could not be saved.

Malagacy (Shackleford), making his second start since finishing a heavily bet fifth in last year’s GI Arkansas Derby, looked to toss his head at the break and was therefore off a step slow, but he soon recovered beneath Javier Castellano and worked his way to the front as Irish War Cry, having his first run since last year’s GI Pennsylvania Derby, held his spot at the fence. Economic Model raced off the pacesetters for the opening three-eighths of a mile, then split rivals to turn the pressure up on Malagacy entering the turn. Irish War Cry rode the rails on the bend, but popped off into a three-wide position nearing the lane and it was a two-horse affair at the quarter pole when Malagacy faded tamely away.

Irish War Cry came in slightly and bumped Economic Model nearing the entrance to the final furlong, but never could grind his way past and the Chad Brown runner crossed the line a reasonably comfortable winner. Tower of Texas (Street Sense) closed belatedly for third.

“He never let the other horse pass him,” winning jockey Irad Ortiz, Jr., said. “He’s the kind of horse that when he makes the lead, if you hit him left he will get out and if you hit him right he will get in. I didn’t want to have any contact with the other horse, so I switched my stick and hit him right-handed. I just took a hold of him and kept him straight.”

Eighth to then-stablemate Connect (Curlin) in the 2016 GI Cigar Mile H., Economic Model made four very well-spaced trips to the races in 2017, good for a third in an April allowance at Belmont and a season-ending victory in a similar test in Elmont Oct. 12. In preparing for this seasonal debut, he had been working with champion Good Magic (Curlin), who resumes in next Saturday’s GII Fountain of Youth S.

Jockey Jose Ortiz was pleased with the return effort of Irish War Cry, winner of last year’s GII Holy Bull S. over the Gulfstream surface.

“We had the one hole–that didn’t play in our favor,” he said. “Malagacy broke good. I knew he had a lot of speed. He wanted to go, so I sat. Graham told me he didn’t want him to go head-to-head. He was coming off a long layoff. We didn’t want to get caught in a speed duel. I just followed Malagacy and Irad. I finally got out at the quarter pole. I thought he was going to win.”

Pedigree Notes:

Bred on the same A.P. Indy–Quiet American cross responsible for the likes of Bernardini, Economic Model–the 16th graded winner for his sire–is immediately related to two horses that did the bulk of their best work on the turf. Jimmy Simms (Lost Soldier) won listed stakes on the grass in Canada, Minnesota and down on the Bayou and was third in the GIII Commonwealth Turf in Kentucky, while half-sister Well Monied (Maria’s Mon) won the GII Honeymoon H. and was Grade I placed in the American and Del Mar Oaks. Economic Model’s full-sister Your Love, a $425,000 KEESEP yearling, has won half of her six career starts and was second for Pompa and Chad Brown in the 2017 Safety Kept S. at Laurel Park.

Queen of America is the dam of the 3-year-old gelding King Orb (Orb), a yearling full-brother to Economic Model and a colt by Runhappy foaled just two days ago.

Saturday, Gulfstream Park
HAL’S HOPE S.-GIII, $100,000, GP, 2-24, 4yo/up, 1m, 1:36.50, ft.
1–ECONOMIC MODEL, 119, h, 5, by Flatter
1st Dam: Queen of America, by Quiet American
2nd Dam: Our Dear Ruth, by Baldski
3rd Dam: Nany’s Appeal, by Valid Appeal
1ST GRADED STAKES WIN. ($150,000 Ylg ’14 KEESEP).
O-Klaravich Stables, Inc. & William H. Lawrence; B-Claiborne
Farm (KY); T-Chad C. Brown; J-Irad Ortiz, Jr. $60,760. Lifetime
Record: GISP, 14-5-3-2, $614,625. *Full to Your Love (Flatter),
SP, $179,200; half to Jimmy Simms (Lost Soldier), MSW &
GSP, $635,616; and Well Monied (Maria’s Mon), GSW &
MGISP, $393,729. Werk Nick Rating: A++. Click for the
eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree.2–Irish War Cry, 119, c, 4, Curlin–Irish Sovereign, by Polish
Numbers. O/B-Isabelle de Tomaso (NJ); T-H. Graham Motion.
$19,600.3–Tower of Texas, 121, g, 7, Street Sense–Rare Opportunity, by
Danzig Connection. ($195,000 Ylg ’12 KEEJAN; $90,000 RNA Ylg
’12 FTKOCT; $150,000 RNA 2yo ’13 OBSMAR). O-Thomas F Van
Meter II & Scott Dilworth; B-Anderson Farms (Ontario) Inc. &
Rod Ferguson (ON); T-Roger L. Attfield. $9,800.Margins: 1 3/4, 1, 4 1/4. Odds: 5.10, 1.90, 29.50.
Also Ran: Conquest Big E, Giuseppe the Great, Malagacy, Send It In. Scratched: Quijote.
Click for the chart, the PPs or the free catalogue-style pedigree. VIDEO, sponsored by Fasig-Tipton.