Awesome Speed Takes Tesio ‘Win and You’re In’ for Preakness Entry
Awesome speed did not cross the finish line first last Saturday, but a steward’s inquiry and race review resulted in a reversal order of finish, giving Awesome Speed the victory and the automatic bid into the 141st running of the Preakness Stakes on May 21.
Awesome Speed was the 3-5 favorite in the 1 1/8 mile Tesio Stakes at Laurel Park, Maryland’s local prep for the Preakness. With first time rider Jevian Toledo aboard, Awesome Speed finished a nose behind Governor Malibu after leading from the gate into deep stretch, but was awarded the victory following Governor Malibu’s disqualification to second for interference in the final sixteenth of a mile.
“It would have been a tough beat,” said trainer Alan Goldberg, who won the 2000 Tesio with Runspastum. “To be honest I was watching the TV and I didn’t see [Governor Malibu] get in but you could see it on the head-on [replay] pretty clearly. I think we probably would have won but when the horse hit him it made him change leads and he kind of lost his momentum.”
Bred by Allen Poindexter and Adena Springs, Awesome Speed is now three-for-three lifetime at Laurel, having broken his maiden last October prior to winning the James F. Lewis III Stakes in November.
Awesome Speed also won the Mucho Macho Man Stakes Jan. 2 at Gulfstream and finished fourth in the Fountain of Youth (G2) after being bumped hard and floated wide shortly after the start. The Tesio was his second start around two turns.
The Tesio was a ‘Win and You’re In’ for the Preakness, and Awesome Speed is now guaranteed a spot in the field and will save $30,000 in entry and starter fees.