The $250,000 Gotham Stakes (G3), contested at 1 1/16 miles on the Aqueduct inner track, is the main local prep for the Wood Memorial, the major Kentucky Derby prep race in New York. Mr. Fantasy, undefeated in two starts against New York-bred company and making his stakes debut for trainer Kiaran McLaughlin, was sent off as the 2-1 favorite in the field of 9 over 3-1 second choice I Want Revenge, shipping in from California where the son of Stephen Got Even was second in the CashCall Futurity and then third in the Robert B. Lewis last time out. Imperial Council, winner of his last two starts and making his stakes debut, was the 4-1 third choice for trainer Shug McGaughey.
Jockey Alan Garcia sent Mr. Fantasy to the lead and down on the rail to save ground around both turns, while Joe Talamo aboard I Want Revenge moved up to press the pace to his outside, through fractions of 23.76, 48.45, and 1:12.69. Turning for home, Talamo asked I Want Revenge for run, and he quickly shot to the front opening a 2 length lead in mid-stretch. Imperial Council, who was 8th early, put in a strong rally down the center of the track but was left with too much ground to make up, as I Want Revenge cruised under the line 8 1/2 lengths in front, completing the trip in 1:42.65 over the track rated fast. It was just a head back from Imperial Council to favorite and pacesetter Mr. Fantasy in third.