Carotari, who had not seen the lead at any point of call in five starts since his wire-to-wire victory in the 2020 Silks Run Stakes, went back to doing what he does best on Saturday at Gulfstream. Carotari used his speed to successfully defend his title in the five-furlong Silks Run with a gate-to-wire, 1 1/4-length victory over 17-1 outsider Citrus Burst under clever handling by jockey Julien Leparoux.
Carotari, a gelded son of Artie Schiller trained by Brian Lynch is a graduate of the famed Hidden Brook Florida training center. He set a contested pace before holding on to register a game neck decision over Fig Jelly to win last year’s edition of the Silks Run. And there was little doubt Leparoux was intent on getting Carotari to the lead again on Saturday, hustling him between horses to stick his head in front before the end of the opening quarter-mile.
Carotari was prompted on the lead by The Connector, got a bit of a breather on the turn, shook clear upon settling into the stretch before maintaining a safe advantage when roused for the final furlong. Citrus Burst was forwardly placed from the outset, came wide with his bid into the stretch, but could not get to the winner. The Connector held on willingly to easily best the others, finishing 2 1/4 lengths in front of Mai Ty One On. Harry’s Ontheloose, a troubled Yes I Am Free, Kobe Fifty Two and Sovereign Warrior rounded out the order of finish.
Carotari completed the distance on a firm five-furlong course in 55.43 and paid $4.80.
“He’s such a cool little horse,” said Lynch, who trains Carotari for owner William Branch. “We gave him a bit of time off the end of summer last year hoping to have a good winter-spring campaign. He’s grown into a big strong gelding, carries good weight now and is a very competitive horse. The plan today was to put him right into the race. I thought he was the fastest horse in there and figured they’d have to catch him to beat him. He’s definitely the kind of horse who can rattle off some big fractions and keep fighting.”
-edited from drf.com