SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. -- A. P. Indian stayed perfect on the year and completed a sweep of the major sprint stakes at Saratoga on Saturday by setting a stakes record in the Grade 1 Forego.
A. P. Indian has won all five of his starts this year and appears to still be improving. In addition to the $700,000 Forego and the Grade 1 Vanderbilt at Saratoga, A. P. Indian also has won the Belmont Sprint Championship, the Donald LeVine Memorial at Parx, and the Decathlon Stakes at Monmouth Park. He was elevated to first in the Decathlon when the winner was disqualified for interference.
A. P. Indian, a 6-year-old gelded son of Indian Charlie, is owned and was bred by Richard Masson's Green Lantern Stables and is based at Fair Hill with trainer Arnaud Delacour. His Grade 1 wins at Saratoga are the first of Delacour's career.
"He seems to be having a lot of fun," Delacour said.
A. P. Indian broke alertly from the outside gate in the 10-horse Forego under Joe Bravo, who reserved him off 16-1 shot Chief Lion early. A. P. Indian took the lead on the far turn, drew well clear in upper stretch, and then held the late-running Tamarkuz safe to win by 2-1/2 lengths.
A. P. Indian's final time of 1:20.99 for seven furlongs lowered the stakes record of 1:21.00 set by Emcee in 2012. The early fractions over the fast track were 22.83 seconds, 45.35, and 1:08.80.
A. P. Indian paid $4.20 to win as the favorite. Tamarkuz rallied to be second, 2-1/4 lengths ahead of third-place Stallwalkin' Dude.
Bravo said after the race that the scratch of Marking, who would have started from the outside post, benefited A. P. Indian.
"I was happy when I got to the jocks' room and saw the scratch," Bravo said. "It helps not to have a horse outside pushing you."
Delacour said races at Belmont Park and Keeneland would be considered for A. P. Indian, as would the Breeders' Cup Sprint. A. P. Indian earned a fees-paid berth in the Sprint as the Forego was a Win and You're In as part of the Breeders' Cup Challenge Series.
"He had a good break this winter at Mr. Masson's farm," Delacour said, "and I think that has helped him this year. He also seemed to turn a corner after his win at Belmont. He was quiet after that race, and it seemed like he knew something."
Three of A. P. Indian's five wins this year have come at seven furlongs.
"He has enough tactical speed to go six furlongs and enough stamina to go seven," Delacour said.