From a Maryland Jockey Club release
Somraj Singh’s Never Stop Looking hadn’t won a race since last January but past performances were of little matter over the wet going in this race as he steered wide into the stretch and ran down his foes to win the $100,000 Fire Plug Stakes, the second of four $100,000 stakes races Saturday afternoon at Laurel Park.
Roimes Chirinos held the reins on the son of Langfuhr for trainer Claudio Gonzalez. Their stretch running heroics got them home a neck in front of Smash and Grab, with fast closer Cutty Shark another neck back in third. Bakken, the overwhelming 2-5 favorite sped to the lead but steadily faded to sixth.
“I told Claudio I wanted to ride this horse back because he tried hard and was real close to winning,” Chirinos said. “I knew this race was going to be tough with lots of speed but I have a lot of confidence in my horse. He picked it up nicely off the turn and ran hard to the finish.”
The win was the second on the card for Gonzalez, who won the recently completed Laurel Park fall training title.
“I told the jockey to wait and make one big run,” Gonzalez said. “This horse really needed his last race. I knew he’d like the wet track and today was his day. Coming into the race we were very worried about the three horse (Bakken) because he had run in the Breeders’ Cup Sprint.”
The winner paid $51 and topped a $288.20 exacta and $622.50 trifecta.