If you hear the words “couldn’t be doing any better” from a horse trainer in regards to his charge it’s likely nothing more than just trainer-speak. Like when you hear a football coach say regarding a player “he’s in the best shape of his career.” Girvin trainer Joe Sharp was heard talking up his charge all week long heading into the Betfair.com Haskell Invitational Stakes (G1).
Whether or not Girvin headed the words his trained was hurling at him, he did in fact come through with a photo finish win in the Haskell over McCracken. Even more impressive is that Girvin completed a last-to-first turnaround in the seven-horse field in what turned out to be one of the more exciting Haskell runs in recent memory.
“It feels great. It was the way it was supposed to be,” said a glowing Sharp. “It was a great team effort—the right horse, the right owners. … It means a lot. At the quarter pole it looked like he was kind of all in, and I didn’t know if he was going to make up the ground he needed to. At about the eighth pole, it looked like he had a shot.
“It’s one of those things, where my career seems to have been a whirlwind thus far but … everything seems to be falling into place.”
Girvin was sent into the race with odds of 9-1. The Haskell win also netted him an automatic entry into this year’s Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1). Girvin is now 4-2-0 in seven career starts, and has earned $1,574,400.