Safety Martial wins
January may be one of the coldest months of the year, but Safety Martial proved once again that January is his favorite month winning at Philadelphia Park. Last January, Safety Martial scored the first of two straight wins, and he kicked off 2008 the same way, with a victory. Coming off of a disappointing sixth place finish in his last race, Safety Martial was sent off at 19/1 and looked to be in trouble early falling well back through the first half-mile. Safety Martial only had one horse beat after a half-mile. However, he picked up his feet nicely midway down the backstretch and began a sustained move. He continued advancing through the turn but then got nearly stopped at the quarter-pole by a tiring horse. Safety Martial was still fifth just outside the eighth pole, but jockey Carlos Cruz was finally able to shift Safety Martial out in midstretch and Safety Martial rallied furiously in the final yards to win by a head.
Trainer Lupe Preciado said, "That was probably the best race this horse ever ran. He showed more determination than I have ever seen. Carlos Cruz told me he was worried that he got too far back early. When he asked the horse to run he started to move, but then he got into trouble. I didn't think he would keep going, but he dug down when he got into the clear. I thought the last race might have been a throw out because he never ran a step two races back, and I thought he might have been a little shorter. He got a lot from that race, and he trained well. He ran a nice race."
Safety Martial should run back in late January.