Arcadia, CA (SportsNetwork.com) - Longshot Majestic Harbor came from off the pace to win Saturday's $500,000 Gold Cup at Santa Anita and deny Game On Dude a third straight win in the race.
Trained by Sean McCarthy and ridden by Tyler Baze, Majestic Harbor was sent off as a 14-1 longshot in the seven-horse field. Game On Dude was the 4-5 favorite and Fury Kapcori the 7-2 second pick.
Game On Dude got an excellent start and was soon joined on the lead by Fury Kapcori. The second choice took the lead in the 1 1/4-mile stakes as the field went under the wire for the first time. Game On Dude was second, several lengths off the leader and Majestic Harbor was racing third off the rail.
Going into the far turn, Game On Dude drew even with Fury Kapcori as Majestic Harbor moved closer from the outside and 5-1 third choice Clubhouse Ride moved into contention along the rail.
Game On Dude had the lead on the final turn, but Majestic Harbor and Clubhouse Ride passed him coming into the stretch. Majestic Harbor sped past Clubhouse Ride at the top of the stretch and cruised to a 6 1/4-length victory over the 6-year-old.
The Gold Cup, formerly the Hollywood Gold Cup, is a Breeders' Cup "Win and You're In" race, giving Majestic Harbor a guaranteed spot in the $5 million Breeders' Cup Classic on Nov. 1 at Santa Anita.
Finishing third was Imperative followed by Game On Dude, Lideris, Fury Kapcori and Salto Del Indio.
The time for the Gold Cup at Santa Anita was 2:01.53 on a fast track.
"He's very special, really good horse," Baze said.
Owned by Gallant Stables, Majestic Harbor pocketed his largest check with the win. The $300,000 almost doubles the 6-year-old's career earnings. In 23 lifetime starts Majestic Harbor has six wins, six seconds and four thirds for $655,764.
Majestic Harbor was coming off a third-place finish behind Clubhouse Ride in the Californian at Santa Anita four weeks ago. He began the year with a second in the San Pasqual Stakes followed by a fourth in the San Antonio and a win in Santa Anita's Tokyo City Stakes.
Majestic Harbor returned $30.80, $10.60 and $5.40. Clubhouse Ride paid $5.60 and $4.00, and Imperative paid $4.00 to show.