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Published on Mar 9, 2013
Verrazano lived up to his billing as a top Triple Crown contender with a solid three-length score over eight other sophomores in the $350,000 Tampa Bay Derby (gr. II) March 9 at Tampa Bay Downs.
The 3-year-old son of More Than Ready picked up 50 points on the Road to the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) and remained undefeated in three starts for Let's Go Stable, Michael B. Tabor, Susan Magnier, and Derrick Smith.
Verrazano, trained by Todd Pletcher, was the 2-5 heavy favorite despite having never raced at the 1 1/16-mile distance before, which he concluded in a final time of 1:43.96 while making his stakes debut. He answered every question asked of him in spite of bobbling slightly at the start under Hall of Fame jockey John Velazquez, who won four races at Tampa Bay on the day.