Wise Dan, America's Horse Of The Year in 2012, made a successful return to action on Friday.
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Charlie Lopresti's charge had beaten subsequent Dubai World Cup winner Animal Kingdom on his final start of 2012 when winning the Breeders' Cup Mile in November.
Sent off a short-priced favourite for the Grade One Maker's 46 Mile at Keeneland, he recorded a straightforward enough victory by a length having been kept clear of trouble.
"I didn't have him totally cranked up today," Lopresti told www.drf.com. "He's just got that desire to win."
After breaking from the outside stall in a field of five older turf horses, Wise Dan raced wide before taking command approaching the furlong pole.
He quickly spurted clear before being kept up to his work by Jose Lezcano to hold off Data Link, the defending Maker's 46 champion.