Double Crown Lights Up Tote Board With Kelso Upset

Courtesy of the BloodHorse
MSW DOUBLE CROWN was started at the Aiken Training Track by Cary Frommer

Double Crown rallies past Baby Yoda to win the Kelso Handicap at Aqueduct Racetrack
Double Crown rallies past Baby Yoda to win the Kelso Handicap at Aqueduct RacetrackCoglianese Photos

In addition to being a Thoroughbred owner and trainer, Norman “Lynn” Cash builds and repairs homes, specializing in roofing. “Not a shingle mistake,” is the motto of his company, Built Wright Homes.

His 5-year-old gelding Double Crown , who he owns with Lola Cash, also was mistake-free Oct. 29, running down heavily favored Baby Yoda  to post a 42-1 upset in the $300,000 Kelso Handicap (G2) at the Belmont at the Big A meet at Aqueduct Racetrack.

“It’s a first graded stakes win for the boss, Mr. Cash, who is a great guy to work for,” said assistant trainer Jay Libertini. “He had a death in the family, so he couldn’t be here. We all love Mr. Cash and his family, and we’re excited for him.”

Though Double Crown surprised bettors with his fifth-to-first rally, in which he defeated Baby Yoda by 1 3/4 lengths, the victory wasn’t entirely out of the blue. He won the Carry Back Stakes and Roar Stakes as a 3-year-old in 2020, when he was also graded placed, and this year, since being claimed for $40,000 by Cash at Churchill Downs in June, had recorded one win in seven pre-Kelso starts and managed a stakes placing. Still, he had been just 2-for-17 in 2021-22 coming into the race.

The Bourbon Courage   gelding put it all together Saturday, running a mile on a fast track in 1:37.16 under J. D. Acosta, successfully rallying from behind slow splits of :24.32 and :48.60 set by Empty Tomb .


Baby Yoda, who pressed the pace three wide under Javier Castellano before taking command coming into the lane, appeared to fatigue late. He finished 8 1/4 lengths in front of Shackqueenking  in third. Empty Tomb faded to fourth.

“I saw Javier stay wide and he had the best horse,” Acosta said. “So, when he made the move, I was able to follow him down the stretch and then put him on the outside. I felt like I had plenty of horse and I thought I was going to win.

“At the eighth pole, I thought I was going to get it. I looked back, and I was hoping no one else was going to catch us, and when I asked my horse, he took off, and he was strong.”

Bred in Maryland by Dr. and Mrs. Thomas Bowman and Rebecca Davis, Double Crown ($86.50) is the lone stakes winner out of the five-time winning Two Punch  mare Two Columbus . The dam has produced seven foals, with five starters from six of racing age and three winners. Her youngest foal is a yearling colt by Madefromlucky  .


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