United wins John Henry Turf Championship (G2) for second straight year
RSS Feeds Sunday, October 3, 2021

United got to the front when it mattered in Saturday’s $200,000 John Henry Turf Championship (G2) at Santa Anita Park, sticking his nose in front to win a three-horse photo.

The Eddie Woods training grad won this race last year as well and has amassed a very impressive record over 22 races, with seven graded stakes wins and more than $1.8 million in earnings.

Saturday’s win did not come easy. United was well off the pace early in the 1 ¼-mile contest and found himself 10 lengths in arrears with a half-mile to run. Jockey Flavien Prat had no choice but to go five-wide around horses at the top of the stretch. United gobbled up the ground in the final furlong to get the nod over pacesetter Acclimate, who was also a nose in front of Friar’s Road.

“I thought I’d be a little closer,” Prat said. “I got shuffled back when we crossed the dirt. I wanted to get a quiet spot and I gave up a few lengths.”

United covered the distance in 1:58.41 and earned a 99 Beyer Speed Figure.

United is owned by LNJ Foxwoods and trained by Richard Mandella. The 6-year-old son of Giant’s Causeway was bred in Kentucky by Rosemont Farm.