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Game On Dude wins Charles Town Classic

CHARLES TOWN, W.Va. (AP) - Game On Dude won the $1.5 million Charles Town Classic, holding off Clubhouse Ride on the final turn for a half-length victory Saturday night at Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races.

Ridden by jockey Mike Smith for trainer Bob Baffert, the 6-year-old Game On Dude tracked the pace set by long-shot Percussion before taking over with a half-mile to go. The winner earned $1 million for a partnership that includes baseball Hall of Famer Joe Torre.

The winning time was 1:52.27. Ron the Greek finished a nose behind Clubhouse Ride in third. Clubhouse Ride has finished second to Game On Dude in three straight races.

``He's just a workhorse. He does everything. He's so straightforward,'' said Smith, a Hall of Fame jockey. ``He's so talented. He runs over everything. He had a bit of trouble handling the surface today. He was slipping on it especially around the turns. He's not used to those tighter turns.''

The winner paid $2.60, $2.20 and $2.20 as the 1-5 favorite.

Percussion was fourth, followed by 2012 Classic winner Caixa Eletronica and Isn't He Perfect.

``My heart was pumping,'' Torre said in the winner's circle. ``It's a helpless feeling because you can't do anything about it, just watch. Sort of the same thing when Mariano Rivera goes out to the mound. You put your hands in your pocket and hope for the best.''

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Mike Dempsey Mike covers the New York racing circuit (Aqueduct, Belmont Park, and Saratoga) year round as well as Keeneland, Churchill Downs, the Triple Crown, and the Breeders' Cup.
The 2015 Triple Crown saw Mike correctly predict American Pharoah to win both the Preakness Stakes and Belmont Stakes. Mike nailed the Exacta and Trifecta in the Belmont Stakes.

Mike had a solid 2014 Triple Crown race season, correctly picking the winning horse in 2 of 3 races. He selected I'll Have another to win The Preakness, and nailed Union Rags to win the Belmont Stakes as his top pick.

Mike also had past succes in the Kentucky Derby, winning with Animal Kingdom in 2011 and rode his top picks, Super Saver and Street Sense, to the finish line in 2010 and 2007 respectively.

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Jerry Sessa Jerry "Shots" Sessa has been involved in horse racing for over 30 years. He now brings his meticulous handicapping style to When Jerry posts picks you are getting his best bets...when you win, he wins.
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In the 2015 Belmont Stakes Jerry dominated races 8-11 by hitting a $4,400 Pick 4, 3 Daily Doubles, 2 Pick 3's and calling American Pharoah as the first Triple Crown winner in 36 years.

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