Rainbows For Luck prevails in Legacy Chase steeplechase race at Shawan Downs
Johann Starr, right, ridden by Mark Watts, gallops a length in front of Slaney Rock, ridden by Paddy Young, after jumping a hurdle in the Volkswagen of Hunt Valley Conditional Claiming Hurdle race at the Legacy Chase at Shawan Downs on Saturday afternoon. (Photo by Jon Sham / September 29, 2012)
Rainbows for Luck proved them wrong, though, making a late move from the middle of the pack to cover the 17-jump course in 7:06 1/5 just ahead of Grinding Speed, Dakota Slew and Monte Bianco.
"Eddie told me he didn't think the horse was fit enough," said Petty, who hails from the steeplechase hotbed of Unionville, Pa. "He (Rainbows For Luck) never looked better in the paddock."
The four-year-old looked good in the race as well, leading after the first fence and never falling below fourth place in the eight-horse field.
"He was jumping insanely well," said Petty, who has also won with the horse at Morven Park in Virginia and Willowdale in Pennsylvania.
Touted before the race at even money by one of the betting lines, Rainbows for Luck proved the billing was accurate when he made his final move after Embarrassed fell at the 15th fence.
"To be honest, I think we were gaining on him anyway," Petty said. "The farther (Rainbows) went, the stronger and more aggressive he was."
Over a final jump that Petty said he "missed," meaning the fence was not smoothly cleared, he felt Grinding Speed behind him.
Unfortunately for the runner-up, Rainbows for Luck wasn't ready to yield the lead.
"It's like he said, 'Oh my God, there's a horse coming. We have to go,'" Petty said. "He grabbed the bridle and pulled me."
Foyle, which had as much as a seven-length lead at one point, fell to Straight To It in the $10,000 Kinsley Company Maiden Timber race that followed the Legacy Chase.