No foolin' around as High Finance wins Tom Fool(G2)
July 4th is a day known for fireworks. While most people will turn their eyes toward the sky tonight to watch "bombs bursting in air", High Finance put on his own fireworks show at Belmont Park winning the $200,000 Grade 2 Tom Fool Handicap. In a race filled with speed, High Finance skirmished for the early lead with odds-on favorite Commentator. As the leaders flew down the backstretch, Rondo joined the top pair to further contest the pace. High Finance's jockey John Velazquez backed High Finance a length off the lead as the first half-mile went in a mind blowing 43.4. High Finance maintained his position down on the rail through the turn then assumed command at the top of the stretch when Velazquez cut him loose. High Finance surged to a daylight advantage inside the eighth pole then easily held sway to the wire to win by nearly three-lengths. High Finance stopped the teletimer in 1:21.4 for the seven furlongs.
Trainer Rick Violette said, "There's not really too much to say after a race like that. He went eyeball to eyeball with some very fast horses and he didn't blink. I thought he got a great trip. He held his position but was still able to take back just a little bit heading into the turn. When John (Velazquez) asked him he opened up. He ran an amazing race."
Jockey John Velazquez said, "My horse ran his eyeballs out. We knew there was a lot of speed in the race. We couldn't let Commentator get out there by himself, but we hoped someone else might press him. When Rondo went up and got the lead I let my horse settle a little bit. I wanted to hold my position and save as much as I could for the stretch. When I asked my colt to go he gave me a nice burst. I just had to keep working on him and get to the wire first."
High Finance, a four-year-old son of Talk Is Money, will now take dead aim on the seven furlong Forego Handicap(G1) on September 1st at Saratoga. High Finance earned $120,000 for his Tom Fool victory pushing his career earnings to $295,850 in fourteen career starts.