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Union Rags Wins US Gr1 Belmont Stakes
In the US, Phyllis Wyeth's home-bred Chadds Ford Stable colt Union Rags (Dixie Union-Tempo, by Gone West) saved ground around the home turn & stuck to the inside rail down the straight to snatch victory by neck in the final strides of the US$1 million Gr1 Belmont Stakes (12 furlongs) for 3YOs in front of 85,811 fans at Belmont Park in New York. Union Rags (ridden by John Velazquez for trainer Michael Matz) defeated front-running colt Paynter (Awesome Again-Tizso, by Cee's Tizzy) & fellow colt Atigun (Istan-Rimini Road, by Dynaformer). Union Rags (a US$145,000 yearling at the 2010 Fasig-Tipton August Sale & subsequently a US$390,000 2YO at the 2011 Fasig-Tipton February Sale) took his record to 5 wins (also including February's Gr2 Fountain Of Youth Stakes over 8.5 furlongs at Gulfstream Park, plus 2011's Gr1 Champagne Stakes over 8 furlongs at Belmont Park & Gr2 Saratoga Special Stakes over 6.5 furlongs at Saratoga) & 2 placings (in March's Gr1 Florida Derby over 9 furlongs at Gulfstream Park & 2011's Gr1 Breeders' Cup Juvenile over 8.5 furlongs at Churchill Downs) from 8 starts for US$1,798, 800 earnings.