Navy Armed Guard took the lead in the stretch and held off the late bid of Cupid’s Claws to win the Listed All American Stakes by three-quarters of a length at Golden Gate Fields May 31.
It was the first Stakes victory for the hard-knocking gelding by Midshipman, who has finished in the money in 20 of his 31 career starts.
Breaking sharply from the gate, Navy Armed Guard was settled into third early, behind the leading duo of Zestful and Anyportinastorm. The six-year-old gelding continued to track that pair down the backstretch and into the far turn before ranging up on the leaders before they hit the top of the stretch.
Navy Armed Guard took the lead briefly before being challenged by Cupid’s Claws. Those two battled for several strides before Navy Armed Guard put his rival away, eventually crossing the wire three-quarters of a length in front.
Bred in Kentucky by George Pruett and Philip Coomer, Navy Armed Guard is out Black Java, a Stakes-placed daughter of Pine Bluff. Black Java has also produced Discreet Angel (by Discreet Cat), who was a champion at ages two and three in Puerto Rico.
Navy Armed Guard is the 43rd career Black Type winner for Midshipman, whose other top runners this year include the unbeaten Kentucky Juvenile Stakes winner Averly Jane; G2 Californian winner Royal Ship; Special Reserve, winner of the G3 Maryland Sprint Stakes; Stonestreet-owned and Wesley Ward-trained multiple Stakes winner Wink; Bara Lass Stakes winner Happy Sailor and Brig, winner of the Daryl E. Parker Memorial Stakes.
Midshipman is standing the 2021 breeding season at Jonabell Farm for $7,500 stands and nurses.