Virginia-bred Charitable Man swept into contention with a five-wide bid on the turn, seized command with one furlong to run, and edged clear to win the $250,000 Futurity Stakes (G2) on Saturday at Belmont Park. Edward P. Evans bred Charitable Man in Virginia. The $200,000 Keeneland September yearling is out of the stakes-winning Saint Ballado mare Charitabledonation.

The Lemon Drop Kid colt held off game runner-up Flying Pegasus, who battled on the inside of the winner to deep stretch. Charitable Man crossed the finish line under a vigorous hand ride from Alan Garcia one length in front while covering seven furlongs in 1:24.30 on a track rated as good.

Charitable Man entered off a gate-to-wire 11 1/4-length debut victory at Saratoga Race Course on August 10.

He demonstrated the ability to rate in the Futurity and after his professional effort, Garcia gave him a strong endorsement.

“He wants to go longer,” Garcia said. “He’s going to the Kentucky Derby (G1).”

Garcia positioned Charitable Man off the pace, in sixth then fourth, as High Mesa set a solid tempo of :22.87 for the opening quarter and :46.97 for a half-mile while closely pressed by Kensei and Flying Pegasus.

Charitable Man advanced on the outside and loomed menacingly at the quarter pole. High Mesa and Kensei yielded in the stretch and left Flying Pegasus and Charitable Man to vie for supremacy. Charitable Man surged clear with one furlong to run to win his stakes debut.
Friesan Fire finished another 2 3/4 lengths back in third.

“We’re just very happy that one of them won, and Alan chose the right one,” trainer Kirian McLaughlin said. “Girolamo ran well, too. He kind of had trouble. Charitable Man is a very nice horse with very nice owners. Hopefully, he will have a very bright future. He was a little wide the whole way, which didn’t help him.”

While Girolamo will most likely be sent to Dubai, McLaughlin plans to run Charitable Man in $400,000 Champagne Stakes (G1) on October 4.

With the $150,000 winner’s share of the Futurity purse, Charitable Man increased his bankroll to $187,200. – Thoroughbred Times

Adam Coglianese/NYRA photo