Temple battles to victory in $150,000 Gio Ponti S.

November 30, 2019

Temple withstood the late charge of Kadar to win the $150,000 Gio Ponti S. Nov. 29 at Aqueduct, the first stakes victory for the 3-year-old son of Temple City.

Temple has steadily climbed the class ladder in 2019, with excellent results, winning or placing in seven of nine starts and earning $188,121. He is one of six stakes winners this year for Temple City, who has accounted for Grade 1 winners Annals of Time and Bolo during the term.

Temple was forwardly placed right from the outset of the 1 1/16-mile Gio Ponti. He was second for the first five furlongs, then took over the lead before entering the stretch. He had to dig in late, but held off Kadar to win by a nose in 1:44.32 on the “good” turf course.

“I was very happy where I was early on. He was doing things so easy. Kendrick [Carmouche], in front, his horse [Backtohisroots] was going so slow,” jockey Jorge Vargas, Jr. said. “He was drifting in and out. I was able to keep him in there. Mid-turn, I asked my horse a little bit, and he jumped on it right away. I was pretty comfortable going in. Mid-stretch, he wanted to hang on me a little bit, but the wire came just in time.”

Bred in Kentucky by Mark Toothaker and Dan White, Temple is the second foal out of the unraced Quiet American mare Desant.