Under a heady ride from jockey Jose Ortiz, Paradise Farms Corp. and David Staudacher’s well-traveled Temple broke through with his first graded-stakes victory and gave trainer Mike Maker a piece of history in the March 5 $200,000 Mac Diarmida Stakes (G2T) at Gulfstream Park.
Temple was bred in Kentucky by Mark Toothaker and Dan White. The gelding is the second foal out of the unraced Quiet American mare Desant, who has a yearling colt by Coal Front. Initially offered at the Keeneland November sale, Temple is the 105th blacktype winner to graduate from a Legacy Bloodstock consignment.
Now a seven-time winner from 34 career starts, Temple had placed in three previous graded-stakes including a solid second in the W.L. McKnight Stakes (G3T) in his start before the Mac Diarmida. The Temple City gelding made Maker the first trainer ever to win the Mac Diarmida three times, having captured back-to-back editions with Zulu Alpha in 2019 and 2020.
Ortiz tipped Temple to the outside for a clear run and they took over the top spot rounding the far turn. With Abaan and Shamrocket giving chase, Temple quickly accelerated away from his foes through the lane, holding Shamrocket at bay a length under the wire. Temple’s stablemate, longshot Media Blitz , passed Abaan late for third.
“It went great. We were clear on the first turn and I was able to gather him up,” said Ortiz. “He was very relaxed the whole time. I had a good rhythm with him the whole way around there. At the three-eighths pole, I put him in the clear and he was there for me.”
The winning time for the 1 3/8-miles on a firm turf course was 2:15.30. No other race splits were recorded by Gulfstream Park for this race.
“He didn’t get away as good as he should have last time,” said Maker. “Got a wide trip. All that went to the wayside today and he got the job done. He’s as honest as the day is long. Very easy to train and shows up every race.”
The consistent gelding sports a record of 7-8-7 from 34 starts. He has bankrolled $598,563 after the Mac Diarmida.
– edited from www.bloodhorse.com