Florida-bred Bentornato repeated his victorious debut score with a four-and-a-quarter-length victory in the $65,000 Proud Man against seven other 2-year-olds at Gulfstream Park Saturday.
In winning the six-furlong test, the son of Bridlewood Farm stallion Valiant Minister also earned a $25,000 Florida-bred win bonus presented by the Florida Thoroughbred Breeders’ and Owners’ Association.
Ridden by Emisael Jaramillo from post three, Bentornato broke a step slow after being bumped at the start by Gentle Breeze to his inside as Big Effect bounced out to a quick lead from post six. Jaramillo hustled Bentornato to the front along the rail down the backstretch and had a half-length on Reaper to his outside through two furlongs in :21.93 on the fast track.
Bentornato momentarily quickened to a length advantage on Reaper into the far turn before 7-5 favorite Divieto made a big move while four-wide, Reaper advanced on the rail and Gentle Breeze moved into contention in the three-path through a half-mile in :45.15. But Bentornato pulled away from his rivals turning for home and drew off in the stretch to win in 1:10.28.