Stay Thirsty tracked early pacesetter Shackleford through the opening six furlongs and the pulled away at the top of the stretch to win the 142nd running of the Grade 1 Travers Stakes at Saratoga. Rattlesnake Bridge finished 2nd, J W Blue 3rd, and Ruler On Ice 4th. Coil and Shackleford were well beaten.
With his win in the Travers, Stay Thirsty stamps himself as the leading contender for the title of champion three-year-old colt of 2011. That competition now turns to the Jockey Club Gold Cup and the Breeders' Cup Classic, races where the Travers winner and his three-year-old rivals will face the contingent of older males. Solid performances by Stay Thirsty in those two races could set him up to be named champion three-year-old AND Horse of the Year (depending on what happens with Havre de Grace and Blind Luck).
The other three-year-old contenders didn't help themselves too much today as Shackleford spit the bit at the top of the lane, Coil was a no-show, and Ruler On Ice could only round out the superfecta.
9-Stay Thirsty: 6.80, 4.20, 3.40
2-Rattlesnake Bridge: 10.80, 7.60
8-J W Blue: 11.40
$1 Exacta: 39.00
$1 Tri: 656.00
$0.10 Super: 511.85
$1 Double: 24.20
$1 Pick 3: 97.50
$0.50 Pick 4: 363.25