Diversify Provides Emotional Win in the Jockey Club Gold Cup

As Diversify rounded the final sweeping turn at Belmont Park in Saturday’s $750,000 Jockey Club Gold Cup (G1), Rodney Paine, perched on a platform above the finish line, started yelling.

“Come on, Big D!” he exhorted. “Dig in! Dig in, Big D!”

And dig in did the four-year-old son of Bellamy Road. Having led largely unchallenged for every step of the 10-furlong race after breaking from post 1, Diversify and Irad Ortiz Jr. had plenty left to hold off late bids by Pavel and Keen Ice to win by a length.

“Yes!” cried Paine, an exercise rider for trainer Rick Violette, and Diversify’s regular rider in the morning. “Yes!”

A box of tissue wouldn’t have been out of place in the Belmont winner’s circle: tears of joy filled Paine’s eyes, as well as those of Violette’s assistant Melissa Cohen and owner Ralph M. Evans, mixing with tears of relief, and of delayed emotion.

Continue reading at Brisnet.com

Diversify and Irad Ortiz Jr. NYRA/Adam Coglianese

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