Silverton Hill’s Darkwatch opened a sizable lead at the final fence in Aiken Fall’s $25,000 Budweiser Holiday Cup and then held off a resurgent Trippo to win the allowance race by three-quarters of a length on Saturday, Oct. 27. Arrakis checked in third, and Class Classic was fourth.
Dogwood Stable’s Trippo and Over Creek Stables’ Arrakis set the early pace while Darkwatch stalked the leaders under jockey Bernie Dalton. Darkwatch surged to the lead on the final turn and burst away from his competition at the final fence. Dalton eased up on Darkwatch in the stretch, and Trippo refused to give up under Willie McCarthy. Dalton kept a close eye on his competition, however, and asked Darkwatch for enough to seal the victory. Darkwatch ran the Budweiser Holiday Cup’s 2 1/4 miles in 4:31.60 on turf rated as good.
Trained by Leslie Young, Darkwatch secured his second straight victory. The four-year-old Royal Academy homebred had won a $10,000 maiden hurdle at the Virginia Fall meet in Middleburg on Oct. 6.