Annals of Time Sadlers Joy Sword Dancer 19 Spencer.jpg

Sadler's Joy (9) with jockey Jose Lezcano aboard and Annals of Time (7) with Javier Castellano up race side-by-side down the stretch in the Sword Dancer with Annals of Time to win by a neck Saturday at Saratoga Race Course.

SARATOGA SPRINGS – It’s been a long road back for Annals of Time. A Grade 1 winner (Hollywood Derby) in his fourth career start, the son of the Dynaformer stallion Temple City only made it to the races once over the next 30 months.

Annals of Time was finally ready to go again this spring. He showed promise finishing a close second in a one-mile allowance at Belmont on June 7, then won an 11-furlong third-level allowance here on July 24. On Saturday, the 6-year-old horse completed the long journey back with a wild off-the-pace charge that brought him a neck victory in the $850,000 Sword Dancer (G1).

“He’s a good horse,” said winning rider Javier Castellano. “I don’t know if I’ve seen a horse that, no matter if the pace is slow or fast, he always finishes really well. Some horses have to have pace in the race, but this horse doesn’t need one.”

Ya Primo made most of the running, taking the field under the wire the first time and leading around to the third and final turn. Channel Maker drew alongside midway around, and when the field turned the corner, nearly every horse appeared to be in contention.

Annals of Time, who had raced near the back for most of the race, started picking up horses on the final turn but still had a half-dozen to pass after straightening out. Widest of all, he put in a grinding run through the stretch, striding out late to get by a gritty Sadler’s Joy for the win.

“When he tipped out, I thought we had a good chance because he has a good, strong closing kick,” said winning trainer Chad Brown. “It’s been a real team effort. We finally have had an uninterrupted training schedule and campaign with him. He’s back to his old form, when he won the Hollywood Derby. He’s probably better now, so I’m just so grateful to have him back healthy.”

Six-year-old Sadler’s Joy, the 2017 Sword Dancer winner, closed well for the place. Channel Cat, who led briefly in mid-stretch, was two lengths back in third. They were followed in order by Channel Maker, Noble Thought, Pillar Mountain, Proven Reserves, Tiz Morning and Ya Primo.

Annals of Time, who races for Klaravich Stables and William H Lawrence, now has a 5-2-1 record from eight starts. His earnings stand at $860,300.

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