Two-Year-Old Thoroughbreds to Watch: Team Picks
Two-Year-Old Thoroughbreds to Watch: Team Picks– While the return of racing at Del Mar is an exciting event in horse racing’s schedule, keeping an eye on the season’s juveniles always proves to be quite thrilling itself. Thanks to the Lady and the Track team, here are a few two-year-olds that might just be special enough to warrant watching!
Smart Strike – Teeming, by Storm Cat
Kari’s One to Watch
Treasuring is a full sister to Grade I winner Streaming and is in training right now at Santa Anita. She should be making her debut at the Del Mar meet, and she has worked nine times since May. Interestingly enough, her second dam is the “blue hen” broodmare Better Than Honour, the dam of Belmont Stakes winners Jazil and Rags to Riches. Treasuring’s turned in her last work from the gate in the handy time of :48 and change, so she looks ready!
Pure Prize – Sharaiji Blossom, by Saint Ballado
Kari’s One to Watch
I’m putting Dotharki Queen on my radar after her impressive win last weekend. She is by sire Pure Prize who is an especially reliable source for fast, early maturing two-year-olds and has been Storm Cat’s leading active juvenile sire for the past two seasons. Her dam is Sharaiji Blossom, by Saint Ballado, who only raced twice with a win and a third-place finish for Godolphin over in Europe. Dotharki Queen is both owned and trained by Kenneth McPeek. She won a $29,000 maiden special weight at Ellis Park on Sunday, July 12, 2015, going a mile on the turf. Although she broke a step slow, she simply powered through the field, making a wide run on the second turn and drawing off in a hand ride to win by seven lengths. I’m guessing they will point to Saratoga for her next start. She’s on my radar.
Magna Graduate – Kimberlite, by Mineshaft
Reinier’s One to Watch
When he debuted at Belmont Park on June 28, what looked most striking on paper for Magna Light was his purchase price. Simply put, Magna Graduate is not an in-demand sire, yet this colt was a $110,000 purchase. In the paddock before the race, NYRA analyst Maggie Wolfendale praised the colt and selected him as her “Paddock Pick.” Magna Light did not disappoint, drawing away by over four lengths in a two-year-old maiden sprint. Magna Light’s second sire Honor Grades is a sibling of the excellent route influence A.P. Indy, and on the bottom side, Mineshaft and Unbridled show up, both top-class routers in their careers. With that kind of pedigree, the sky is the limit going forward.
Malibu Moon – Quanah County, by Valid Expectations
Casey’s One to Watch
Malibu Moon has a reputation for siring excellent fillies, and by the looks of this filly, who won her debut going five furlongs for trainer Todd Pletcher, she will be no different. This filly was bought by StarLadies Racing at the 2014 Keeneland November Sale for $250,000. Turning her into an excellent filly will be tough, but Todd Pletcher knows the secrets to do so. Her workouts have been consistent and strong. Bred to be fast over the traditional dirt surface, this filly has every reason to improve and stretch out in distance.
Speightstown – Ez Indy, by A.P. Indy
Jessica’s One to Watch
Piaf won her debut quite impressively, taking the Gulfstream five-furlong two-year-old event by 2-3/4 lengths in front-running fashion. She did not break from the gate particularly well, but her early speed, no doubt due to her speedy sire Speightstown, helped propel her to the front of the pack where she remained with little urging. The fact that Speightstown is her sire indicates she should run her best races over short distances, but the influence of A.P. Indy as her broodmare sire may provide a little extra stamina, perhaps enough for her to handle a mile. It will be interesting to see whether trainer Ralph Nicks sticks to the sprints or stretches her out in her next start.