Darren Nagle’s magical season continued Saturday when he won Shawan Downs’ principal timber and hurdle races on a warm, sunny afternoon in suburban Baltimore.
The 30-year-old Irish-born jockey pulled a significant upset with another well-timed ride aboard Kiplin Hall’s Rodriguez in the $25,000 Brown Advisory Legacy Chase over timber. Always close to the pace after Class Indian surrendered a massive early lead, Rodriguez was overtaken by Armata Stables’ Cornhusker at the last fence of the 3 1/8-mile race.
But William Dowling-trained Rodriguez found another gear in the run-in of the right-handed course and won by a half-length. Worried Man finished third in a field of 10, and Straight to It was fourth. Rodriguez ran the distance in 6:51.20 on firm turf.
A 10-year-old High Chaparral gelding, Irish-bred Rodriguez scored his first win since a maiden timber win at the Virginia Fall meet last October.
A race earlier in the $25,000 Sodexo ratings handicap, Nagle put Welcome Here Farm’s Second Amendment on the lead early, and the homebred National Anthem gelding turned away all challengers while winning in 3:36.40.
Magalen O. Bryant’s Personal Start made a strong late bid and finished second, 1 1/5 lengths behind the winner, and Indy’s Legacy finished third.
Nagle entered the Shawan program with a two-race lead in the jockey standings after winning Thursday’s Lonesome Glory Handicap (Gr. 1) aboard All the Way Jose, and he opened another notch with the two wins. He now has 14 victories and a three-race bulge in the standings.
Sean McDermott retained second position with a win aboard Gil Johnston’s Hanno in a $25,000 maiden hurdle. Jack Doyle moved into sole possession of the third spot with two wins, aboard Beverly Steinman’s First Friday in a $20,000 maiden hurdle and on Hudson River Farms’ Aflutter in a $25,000 maiden hurdle. McDermott has 11 wins, and Doyle has 10.