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Into Mischief runners 1-2 in inaugural St. Matthews S. at Churchill Downs

May 5, 2022

Top Gunner wins the 2022 St. Matthews S. at Churchill Downs – Coady photography

Top Gunner surged to the lead in with a quarter-mile to run then held off Tulane Tryst in the final furlong to give Into Mischief a 1-2 finish in the first running of the $160,000 St. Matthews S. Wednesday afternoon at Churchill Downs.

The victory was the first black type win for Top Gunner, who placed in the Stonerside Sprint S. at Sam Houston Park in January. The always-consistent 5-year-old sports a record of 5-3-3 in 15 outings and has earned $344,993 for 4 G Racing LLC.

With Quick Tempo rocketing to the lead out of the gate, Top Gunner pressed the leader through a very quick quarter mile of :21.56. The torrid pace began to take its toll on the front-runner, and Top Gunner took command just before turning for home.  He drifted out a bit in the final furlong, but held on to win by two lengths in a rapid 1:08.88 for the six furlongs on the fast track.

“We got out to a good break, and I knew [Quick Tempo] had early speed,” said winning rider Rey Gutierrez. Also, I wanted to keep my horse wide with the way the rail has seemed today — I didn’t want to get sunk in there.”

The winner was bred by Michael Talla and was the first foal to race out of Downton My Lady. Top Gunner is Into Mischief’s 10th stakes winner this year, the most for any North American sire.