By Tod Marks
Gill Johnston’s State of Affair started fast and finished faster, romping by daylight under Tom Garner in Wednesday’s Saratoga allowance hurdle for non-winners of two.
Breaking swiftly in the 2 1/16-mile contest, the six-year-old son of Giant’s Causeway, trained by Todd Wyatt, was joined by Carrington Holdings’ Hurtgen Forest, with Jamie Bargary up, and the duo dueled back-and-forth, pulling far ahead of the rest of the six-horse field.
There was little change in position among the competitors as the race played out, with the field strung out by 20 to 30 lengths at one time or another. Turning for home on the final lap, Garner stepped on the gas and drew clear of Hurtgen Forest, who was eventually overtaken by Kiplin Hall’s Take Profit (Graham Watters), who had sat in third from the start.
Entering the stretch, Garner continued to rouse his mount, who pulled clear as much the best. The winner was sent off as 8-1, Take Profit was 7-1. Favored Baltimore Kid (Parker Hendriks) finished third as the 6-5 choice.
For State of Affair, it was the gelding’s first victory in four 2022 starts. He broke his maiden at Great Meadow in the fall of 2021, after beginning his career in the UK.
The replay of the Kiser can be watched here: https://www.nyra.com/saratoga/racing/replays
Full results can be found here: https://nationalsteeplechase.com/racing/