Majestic Harbor much the best in Alysheba

Profile Picture: James Scully

May 6th, 2016

A wire-to-wire victor in the Mineshaft (G3) two starts back, Majestic Harbor stalked the pace and traveled wide on both turns before rallying to easily win Friday’s $400,000 Alysheba (G2) at Churchill Downs. Owned by Gallant Stable and trained by Paul McGee, the 8-year-old horse scored by 2 ½ lengths with Corey Lanereie.

Winner of the 2014 Gold Cup at Santa Anita, Majestic Harbor registered his fourth stakes victory and increased his bankroll to $1,246,814 from a 41-10-8-6 record.

Cat Burglar sped forward at the start and established opening splits in :24.26 and :48.45 before coming under pressure on the far turn. Majestic Harbor was fifth after the opening half-mile and advanced into contention rounding the final bend.

Cat Burglar was still clinging to a narrow lead after three-quarters in 1:12.54, but Majestic Harbor blew by on the far outside after entering the stretch and widened his advantage through the final sixteenths of a mile, completing the 1 1/16-mile distance in 1:43.10.

Off as the 13-1 seventh choice among eight runners, the winner returned a $28.80 win mutuel.

Eagle rallied to be a non-threatening second, a neck better than Majestic Affair in third. Cat Burglar, Departing, Top Billing, Natchez and 2-1 favorite Noble Bird completed the order of finish. Face of Winner and Midnight Storm were scratched.

Majestic Harbor was exiting a troubled effort in the March 26 New Orleans H. (G2) in which he was steadied badly in the stretch. He was elevated one spot to fourth by the stewards after a disqualification.

Bred in Kentucky by Liberation Farm and Brandywine Farm, the bay son of Rockport Harbor sold for $20,000 at the 2009 Keeneland September sale. Majestic Harbor hails from the stakes-placed French Deputy mare Champagne Royale.

Photo courtesy of Churchill Downs/Coady Photography