Runnin’toluvya third in return to action

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It was a long time between starts for millionaire Runnin’toluvya. Prior to Saturday’s seventh at Charles Town Races, the Fiber Sonde gelding, a millionaire, hadn’t run since December 11, 2020.

Making his first start in nearly 17 months, Runnin’toluvya turned in a solid performance, finishing third in a salty field of veteran West Virginia-breds in a $38,700 allowance contest.

Under jockey Christian Hiraldo, Runnin’toluvya was away alertly to press the pace of post-time favorite Social Chic, who himself had not made a start since winning the October 9 West Virginia Lottery Breeders’ Classic for trainer Jeff Runco.

Social Chic and Runnin’toluvya took turns sticking their heads in front through the opening half-mile in 47.17 seconds while Shameless Risk bided his time a couple of lengths back in third. Rounding the far turn, Shameless Risk, a Ronney Brown trainee ridden by Carlos Lopez, made a bold three-wide sweep to the front.

But in the lane, the John Casey-trained Candy Invasion, with Gerald Almodovar up, mounted a late rally to prevail by a nose over Shamless Risk, who held second, 2 ¼ lengths clear of the rest.

Meanwhile, Runnin’toluvya and Social Chic continued their battle all the way to the wire, with Runnin’toluvya nosing out his rival to earn third. It was a half-dozen lengths farther back to longshot Cayenne Creek, who finished fifth and last.

Candy Invasion paid $23.40 to win. Running time for the 6 ½ furlongs on a fast main track was 1:18.78. Candy Invasion, a four-year-old Normandy Invasion gelding, now has four wins from 22 starts with earnings of $138,356.

Runnin’toluvya is trained by Tim Grams for his and his wife Judy’s Grams Racing Stable. He was bred in West Virginia by Leslie Cromer. His ledger shows 15 wins from 27 career starts and earnings of over $1 million.

Runnin’toluvya mounted a 10-race win streak spanning 2018 and 2019. That included scores in the 2018 West Virginia Breeders’ Classic and 2019 Grade 2 Charles Town Classic.