“Bern Identity” wins the Tale of the Cat @ Saratoga
Bern Identity confirmed his affinity for both Saratoga and a wet racetrack, parlaying that combination into a popular 1 1/2-length victory over Mewannarose in Friday’s $100,000 Tale of the Cat Stakes.
Bern Identity won the Grade 2 Sanford and finished third in the Grade 2 Hopeful here as a 2-yearold in 2012. But he lost nearly his entire 3-year-old campaign and more than half of his 4-year-old season before finally returning to win an overnight stakes over a sloppy track at Monmouth Park earlier this month.
Bern Identity put his abundant speed to good use again in the six-furlong Tale of the Cat, sprinting right to the lead under Paco Lopez over a track that favored front-runners during the early stages of Friday’s card. Bern Identity set a reasonable pace, an opening quarter-mile in 22.55 seconds and a half-mile in 45.85, while stalked by Mewannarose from the outset, maintained a clear advantage when put to a vigorous hand ride by Lopez through midstretch, then was geared down a bit with the issue no longer in doubt nearing the wire.
Mewannarose proved no match for the winner but was easily second-best, finishing 6 1/2 lengths clear of Bahamian Squall. Traffic Light, Tenango, and Royal Currier completed the order of finish.
Bern Identity completed the distance in 1:10.05 over a sealed, muddy track and paid $5.40.
“We knew that he liked the mud, and a little bit of coming here is that he likes Saratoga; obviously, he won the Sanford here,” said Kelly Breen, who trains Bern Identity for owners George and Lori Hall. “He’s such a nice horse. I hope I get to showcase him to show his talents because he’s really a class act. On the plane ride home, I’m sure George and I will pick out a couple of races where he might go next.”