Carrington Holding’s Boss Man proved the boss of Belmont Park’s $75,000 William Entenmann Memorial Novice Stakes when he set all the pace and valiantly turned back a challenge from Ice It to win by a half-length on Thursday.
Trained by Arch Kingsley Jr., Boss Man was given a boss ride by Michael Mitchell, who put him on the lead at the start of the 2 1/4-mile Entenmann Memorial and maintained a steady pace with Riverdee Stable’s Gibralfaro and Rosbrian Farm’s Detroit Blues right behind him.
When Sean McDermott made a modest move on Gibralfaro past the finish line the first time, Mitchell left out a notch and kept Boss Man with a lead of slightly more than a length.
After the final fence on Belmont’s backstretch, Mitchell asked Boss Man for his flat speed around Belmont’s turn as Gibralfaro faded from the picture.
DASH Stable’s Ice It, ridden for the first time by reigning champion jockey Darren Nagle, challenged from the outside in the stretch, and the Tapit gelding reached Boss Man’s saddle but could not get any closer as Boss Man maintained his advantage through the final strides under firm handling by Mitchell.
Detroit Blues, making his first start in more than two years, finished third, and Robert A. Kinsley’s No Wunder closed ground to finish fourth, a head in front of City Dreamer.
Sent to the starting gate as the 3.05-to-1 betting choice a few dollars ahead of No Wunder, Boss Man paid $8.10 to win after running the Entenmann distance in 4:12.34 on yielding turf.
The victory thrust Boss Man into the battle for the National Steeplechase Association’s 2018 championship for novices, or horses in their first seasons of competition over fences. A maiden winner on his home court, the Queen’s Cup Steeplechase of co-chairs Carrington and Bill Price outside Charlotte, Boss Man won at Saratoga on Aug. 1 and came back in 20 days to run a respectable third in Saratoga’s Michael G. Walsh Novice Stakes. He now has earned $109,500 this year from five starts.
An eight-year-old by the versatile sire English Channel, Florida-bred Boss Man was bred by the Kinsman Stable of George Steinbrenner, the horse owner and breeder best known as the owner of the New York Yankees and often referred to as “The Boss.” Boss Man was foaled approximately five months before Steinbrenner’s death on July 13, 2010.