Hoppertunity and Tapiture exchanged multiple bumps down the middle of the Oaklawn Park homestretch before Hoppertunity pulled away inside the final furlong to cross the finish line a half length ahead in the Rebel Stakes. After an review of the incident by the stewards, no changes were made to the order of finish with Hoppertunity declared the winner of the G2-Rebel Stakes. Tapiture, winner of the Southwest Stakes last month at Oaklawn, held for second; Ride On Curlin completed the trifecta, whileStrong Mandate rounded out the top four. With his victory in the Rebel, Hoppertunity picked up 50 points towards a spot in the starting gate for the 2014 Kentucky Derby.
Strong Mandate set the early fractions over an Oaklawn course labeled "Wet/Fast", with and opening half and three-quarters in 24.06 and 47.97. At the top of the lane, Ride On Curlin made his move to the inside of Strong Mandate, while Tapiture and Hoppertunity swung to the outside to engage the leader. Tapiture and Hoppertunity bumped together hard with a little over a furlongs to go, while Strong Mandate and Ride On Curlin both drifted out into the stretch. The four-way battle to the wire began to sort itself out in the last 100 yards with Hoppertunity grinding past the Southwest winner, Tapiture.
Hoppertunity is a three-year-old colt by Any Given Saturday out of a Unaccounted For mare (Refugee), trained by Bob Baffert, and ridden by Mike Smith. Hoppertunity was a well-beaten seventh in the G2-Risen Star at the Fair Grounds back on February 22nd before his breakthrough victory in the Rebel.
Below are the payouts, fractions and internal splits for the Rebel Stakes:
|2-Ride On Curlin||$4.60|
|Base||Bet||Combo||Payout||Pays to -|