Longshot and former claimer S’maverlous won for fun in his very first stakes attempt in Saturday’s $400,000 New Orleans Handicap (GII) at Fair Grounds.
The Mike Maker-trained son of Tiz Wonderful, who had earned his living wearing a tag for most of his career, carried jockey Jose Lezcano to victory by two lengths and stopped the clock in 1:50.06 for the nine-furlong fast main track test.
Runner-up Jessica’s Star was disqualified and placed fifth for interference with Majestic Harbor just inside the sixteenth pole, while International star finished another half-length back in third.
International Star, also trained by Maker, officially was awarded second-place honors at odds of 13-1, while fourth-place finisher and 2-1 favorite Eagle was bumped up to third.
Six-year-old S’marverlous was claimed by Maker out of a winning effort for $32,000 at Belmont Park in September. He started several times for Maker before Gata Racing Stables took ownership earlier this year.
At odds of 20-1, S’maverlous paid $42.40, $15.60, and $6.40. International Star was good for $4.20 and $3.20 while Eagle returned $3. The exact was good for $192.80 and the trifecta paid $380.20.