The first stakes race on Saturday was the $250,000 Bernard Baruch Handicap (G2), a 1 1/16 mile Mellon turf test for older horses. Monmouth Stakes (G2) winner Data Link was sent off as the 11-10 favorite in the field of 6 over 9-5 second choice Dominus, making his turf debut after winning an allowance last out, and 7-1 third choice Guys Reward, fourth in the Fourstardave (G2) after winning the Firecracker Handicap (G2).
Jockey Julien Leparoux sent Dominus to the lead first time past the stands and he set easy fractions of 24.29, 48.63, and 1:12.26 while as many as 2 1/2 lengths in front of Guys Reward stalking him second. In the stretch, Dominus opened up by 2 lengths as Guys Reward tired, through 1 mile in 1:34.49. Data Link, who settled in third for the first 7/8, gained late but Dominus cruised past the post 1 1/4 lengths clear in a time of 1:40.32 over the firm course. It was another 1 1/4 lengths back to late-running 8-1 Sky Blazer third.