10/25/2011 6:32PM

Keeneland Babies for October 28

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Welcome to Keeneland Babies! I'll analyze every juvenile contest at the meet.

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Friday, October 28, 2011

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Race 5
1 1/8 Miles (Turf)
2-year-olds
Purse $50,000

Analysis:
O'PRADO AGAIN may not have a sudden burst of speed, but his sustained rally may serve him well at this nine-furlong distance.  Nineteen days ago, O'Prado Again looked to be outpaced on the far turn, but came with a steady run to finish third despite being bumped twice in upper stretch.  This would be his third start of the form cycle and he's improved thus far with each and every start.  A $350,000 yearling out of an unplaced half-sister to multiple stakes-winning sprinter Freddie Frisson (7-24, 283K, 0-1 on turf, dam of multiple juvenile Grade 1 winner First Samurai) and Grade 3 sprint winner Sky Blue Pink (7-17, 300K, 0-1 on turf), O'Prado Again can factor if he breaks in from the also-eligible list.
HOGUE finished two lengths behind O'Prado Again in that October 9 maiden heat, but he was side-swiped at the start and raced in behind horses in upper stretch.  He rallied nicely along the inside to complete the superfecta and galloped out nicely after the race. The $100,000 yearling can't afford to break poorly for the third straight start, but may have a bit of ability and seems to be moving forward.
OPTIONALITY stretches out following two synthetic sprints for trainer Tom Proctor.  He raced against the grain of speed-favoring tracks in both of those races and can certainly improve moving to turf while switching to Julien Leparoux.  A $225,000 yearling that resold for $240,000 in May, Optionality is by More Than Ready (57-400, 14%, with first-time turf runners).  The dam was Grade 3-placed on dirt at two (2-5, 70K, 1-2 at two) and this is her first starter.  The dam is a half-sister to stakes-placed juvenile Fortunate Halo (4-23, 67K, 2-9 at two, 0-2 on turf).
ROCK HARDER didn't have an easy time of it in his career debut at Belmont on September 17.  He saved ground for most of the way, but was in behind horses on the final turn.  He remained bottled up until midstretch, but split rivals with a solid run to finish fourth.  He may not have appreciated pressing the pace in his most recent start on October 8 and may be more patiently handled this time around by Robby Albarado.  A half-brother to Grade 2-placed turf performer Close Ally (3-9, 193K, 1-7 on turf), Rock Harder is out of the multiple stakes-placed French turf runner Abundance.  A $70,000 yearling buyback, he has some ability and shouldn't be discounted.
ST MOOSE, mired on the also eligible list, was a $20,000 yearling that resold for $50,000 in April.  He raced wide from a tough outside post in his career debut going two turns on grass at Saratoga and simply didn't have enough pace to attack in his most recent start on polytrack.  A half-brother to stakes-winner Chopper Won (4-17, 149K, 3-16 on turf) out of stakes-winner Lady Reiko (7-26, 303K, 1-1 at two, 4-15 on turf), St. Moose can improve, but a combination of poor post and uncertain pace setup works against him.
DON'S BIRTHDAY draws cozily down inside, but he has yet to make an impact in his career.  Nine furlongs could be pushing it and he finished well behind Hogue two back at Kentucky Downs.
MANX raced evenly in his first start with blinkers, finishing ahead of next-out winner Self Destruct (57 Beyer in $20,000 maiden claimer on dirt at Monmouth).  By turf champion English Channel out of a turf-placed half-sister to Remsen winner Saarland, it may be too early to give up on him. 
MAGELLAN finished behind Hogue at Kentucky Downs and must better his 40 Beyer top. 
FIRST MINISTER wheels back in less than two weeks while adding blinkers for Charles Lopresti. He was given a tough two-turn task in his career debut and a poor start made the race even more difficult.  By Tale of the Cat (44-432, 10%, with first-time turf runners), First Minister is the first starter out of a route-placed mare (0-4, 3K).  The third dam is multiple stakes-winner Viva Sec (10-35, 307K).  Tough post.
GOLD POLICY has lost ground from the stretch call to the wire in all three of his starts in New Jersey.  By Giacomo (2-24, 8%, with first-time turfers), Gold Policy is the first starter out of the stakes-placed dam (3-16, 51K, 0-6 at two, 1-6 on turf). Must show greater stamina.
N. B. A. MONEY, a $195,000 yearling buyback, is by Mr. Greeley (33-420, 9%, with first-turf runners).  The dam was a Grade 1 winner (7-28, 642K, 0-1 at two) and she has foaled three turf runners that failed to win on that surface.  A half-brother to stakes-winner French Dip (3-16, 148K, 0-1 on turf), N. B. A. MONEY adds Lasix for a barn that does much better second-out than with firsters. 
SWAGGABOY didn't do much at long odds in his career debut going six furlongs on dirt at Monmouth and now must stretch out a daunting three-eighths in only his second start.  By Stevie Wonderboy (0-5 with first-turfers), Swaggaboy is out of an unraced mare that produced one unsuccessful turf performer.  The dam is a half-sister to Travers winner Carr de Naskra (7-18, 831K) and multiple stakes-winner Under Orders (11-53, 241K, 2-3 at two, 1-10 on turf, first-turf winner).
DUZY JASKO took some money for his debut run over polytrack, but the son of Tapit (15-149, 10%, with first-turf runners) was beaten double-digit lengths.  The unplaced dam (0-1 on turf) has foaled one turf winner (first-turf winner) from three sod starters.  Duzy Jasko is also a half-brother to stakes-winning router Gems and Gold (2-22, 35K).  The second dam is juvenile Grade 3 sprint winner Weekend Delight (16-43, 460K, 5-9 at two, 0-2 on turf).
MR SUPERNOVA was eased in his debut after being sent away at 62-1 odds.  The son of Aldebaran (11-94, 12%, with first-turf runners) is out of a stakes-winning sprinter (4-13, 123K) that has foaled one turf winner from three grassy performers. Adds Lasix for tough spot.

Selections:
1. O'Prado Again
2. Hogue
3. Optionality

The Play:
O'Prado Again to Win at 2-1 odds or greater

*If O'Prado Again scratches, then Hogue to Win at 2-1 odds or greater.

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Race 10
6 Furlongs (Polytrack)
Maiden Claiming ($50,000)
2-year-olds
Purse $20,000

Analysis:

THUNDER HARBOR finished "on even terms with Hammers Terror, good workout for both," according to the "Keeneland Clocker Report" for October 7.  That colt won a maiden special weight here on October 20 with a 78 Beyer.  He is by Rockport Harbor (11-112, 10%, with juvenile debut runners).  The dam was unplaced from one sprint start and has foaled six winners from as many runners (1-3 with 2yos, 5-6 with sprinters).  Thunder Harbor is a half-brother to juvenile stakes-placed sprinter City Chatter (1-10, 36K, 1-5 at two, 1-9 sprinting). The dam is a half-sister to stakes-placed Capp Ice (7-31, 65K, 0-8 sprinting), multiple stakes-winning sprinter Capp It Off (9-18, 213K, 1-1 at two, 9-18 sprinting), stakes-winner Capp the Power (8-32, 168K, 0-2 at two, 4-22 sprinting), multiple stakes-winner Say Capp (9-37, 287K, 1-7 sprinting) and multiple stakes-placed Twilight Prince (9-56, 244K, 0-5 at two, 6-44 sprinting). A $15,000 yearling buyback that was also bought back for $12,000 in May, Thunder Harbor makes his debut for trainer Michael Stidham (3-15, 20%, $1.61 ROI) over the past five years with juvenile debut runners in synthetic maiden claiming sprints (0-3 at Keeneland).

TIEMPO LIBRE is by Tale of the Cat (75-404, 19%, with juvenile debut runners).  The unraced dam has foaled two winners from six runners (0-2 with 2yos, 0-5 in main track sprints).  Tiempo Libre is a half-brother to Grade 3 route winner Patience Game (2-10, 152K, 0-3 sprinting), stakes-winner Star Queen (5-25, 158K, 0-1 at two, 0-1 in main track sprints) and stakes-placed juvenile Forest Grinder (0-7, 14K, 0-4 at two, 0-1 sprinting).  The dam is a half-sister to multiple juvenile stakes-winning turfer Comet Shine (3-14, 202K, 3-6 at two, 0-1 sprinting), multiple Grade 2-placed turfer Sky Colony (5-37, 294K) and stakes-winner Misty Mission (2-3, 194K).  Trainer Ian Wilkes is 0-3 over the past five years with juvenile debut runners in synthetic maiden claiming sprints (0-1 at Keeneland) and doesn't have good overall numbers with first-time starters. 

PATRIOTIC DREAM adds Lasix and drops out of the maiden special weight ranks.  The dam, a $12,000 yearling, was a turf winner (9-65, 102K, 0-1 at two, 0-2 sprinting) and she has foaled two winners from four runners (0-2 with 2yos, 0-4 with sprinters).  The dam is a half-sister to stakes-placed Smart Sable (8-48, 54K, 1-5 at two, 5-26 sprinting).  Not sure if he's been facing any killers at Presque Isle Downs, and it's possible he wants a bit more ground, but his numbers put him on par with the top contenders.

PISGAH STATION drops out of the special weights for the first time and should appreciate turning back in distance for trainer Rusty Arnold.  The dam, a $58,000 yearling, was a multiple stakes-winner (4-11, 232K, 1-3 at two, 3-6 in main track sprints) and she has foaled 2 winners from 3 runners.  Pisgah Station is a half-brother to stakes-placed router Derivative (4-13, 133K, 0-4 at two, 2-7 sprinting).  The dam is a half-sister to multiple Grade 3 winner Purely Cozzene (6-22, 541K, 2-6 at two, 1-3 sprinting) and juvenile stakes-placed sprinter Forestry Prince (5-15, 78K, 1-3 at two, 5-13 sprinting). Ran a solid second in career debut sprinting at Arlington (winner of that race returned to finish fourth in the Arlington-Washington Futurity with an 80 Beyer while the third-finisher came back to graduate with a 64).  He was match for Scatter a Star last time and that won came right back to take an entry-level allowance over the Hawthorne turf with a 71 Beyer.  Seems like a good fit here.

COLBERT gets class relief after racing in special weights at Ellis, Saratoga and Arlington.  The unraced dam has foaled two winners from four runners (1-4 with 2yos, 0-3 with sprinters).  The third dam is multiple Grade/Group 1 turf winner Dahlia. Finished ahead of next-out winner Adena's Chance ($40,000 maiden claimer with 54 Beyer) in most recent outing and should be running late under Julien Leparoux. 

ISLE OF SKYE, unraced since tiring as the favorite in a 4 1/2-furlong sprint here during the spring meet (finished ahead of next-out 57-Beyer graduate Green Mouse), is out of an unplaced mare ($300,000 yearling went 0-3) that has foaled two winners from three runners (0-1 with 2yos, 1-2 with sprinters).  The dam is a half-sister to juvenile stakes-winning sprinter Cape Royale (2-24, 136K, 1-2 at two, 2-12 sprinting), Grade 3 sprint winner Sir Hutch (5-19, 195K, 5-18 sprinting), stakes-winner Klondike Strike (7-25, 224K, 0-2 at two, 4-18 sprinting) and multiple Grade 1 sprint winner Kalookan Queen (11-25, 1.0M, 11-25 sprinting). Was outworked by Politically Correct, according to the "Keeneland Clocker Report" for October 21.  That one is a juvenile colt that finished second in a maiden special weight here on October 26 with a 71 Beyer.  Don't be surprised if this one shows good early zip for juvenile guru Wesley Ward.

DEVOTED WILDCAT, unraced since finishing an even fifth in a 2 1/2-furlong dash at Gulfstream in April, is out of an unraced mare that has foaled 2 winners from 3 runners (1-3 with 2yos, 1-3 with sprinters).  The dam is a half-sister to stakes-placed performer Hole in the Head (3-21, 112K, 1-4 at two, 2-10 sprinting) and multiple Grade 3 winner Joint Effort (6-18, 791K, 2-8 at two, 4-11 sprinting). A $29,000 yearling buyback, Devoted Wildcat exits a race that produced six horses that hit the board next-out (62 Beyer top).  He must break alertly from the inside draw.

DREAMSCUTSHORT was outworked by Paroled, according to the "Keeneland Clocker Report" for October 13.  That gelding finished seventh in his debut, with a 45 Beyer, in a maiden special weight at Keeneland on October 22.  He is by Belong to Me (35-325, 11%, with juvenile debut runners).  The dam was a winner (3-27, 116K) and this is her first starter.  The dam is a half-sister to multiple stakes-placed Red Reef (3-26, 112K, 2-4 at two, 0-2 sprinting), German Group 1 turf winner Kaieteur and stakes-placed router Whenthetimeisright (4-30, 178K, 2-6 sprinting). Trainer Phillip Sims is 3-12 (25%, $6.03 ROI) over the past five years with juvenile debut runners in synthetic maiden claiming sprints (2-9, 22%, $4.53 ROI at Keeneland).

READY FOR RAY, a $32,000 yearling that sold for half that amount in April, is by More Than Ready (34-327, 10%, with juvenile debut runners).  The dam was a stakes-winning sprinter (6-25, 312K, 0-1 at two, 6-24 in main track sprints) and has foaled 4 winners from 4 runners (1-2 with 2yos, 4-4 with sprinters).  This is the female family of juvenile Grade 3 winner Cosmic Tiger (6-21, 182K, 5-8 at two, 4-12 sprinting).  Trainer Gerald Bennett is 0-4 over the past five years with juvenile debut runners in synthetic maiden claiming sprints.

WHO DAT FANS is by Brahms (10-132, 8%, with juvenile debut runners).  The dam was a multiple stakes-placed sprinter (5-23, 133K, 1-4 at two, 5-23 sprinting) and she has foaled 0 winners from 1 runner (0-0 with 2yos, 0-1 with sprinters).  The dam is a half-sister to Grade 1-placed router I'm Influential (4-9, 112K, 3-5 sprinting) and is a full sister to stakes-winner Racing for Riches (8-31, 156K, 5-21 in main track sprints). Trainer Merrill Scherer is 2-13 (15%, $1.10 ROI) over the past five years with juvenile debut runners in synthetic maiden claiming sprints (0-2 at Keeneland).

AEGISADVANTAGE, a $35,000 yearling buyback, shoed good speed in his debut at Ellis Park before faltering badly in the lane.  That was a live maiden special weight as four horses returned from that race to win (including next-out Grade 3 Arlington-Washington Futurity winner Shared Property).  The dam was a sprint winner (2-11, 22K, 2-7 sprinting) and has foaled 10 winners from 13 runners (3-6 with 2yos, 5-10 with sprinters).  Aegisadvantage is a half-brother to stakes-winner Tip the Scale (9-26, 129K, 0-4 sprinting) and Grade 2 turf winner Eleusis (6-10, 165K).  The dam is a half-sister to multiple Grade 1 route winner Peaks and Valleys (9-16, 1.5M, 3-4 at two, 4-6 sprinting) and multiple stakes-winner Alternate (6-23, 550K, 1-2 sprinting).  Should be close early and can't be taken lightly.

MAORI was eased going nine furlongs against tougher competition at Saratoga (two of the three runners to return from that race came back to crack the trifecta next out; 71 Beyer top) and has only finished ahead of one other horse in his short career.  A $17,000 yearling buyback, Maori is out of an unraced dam that has foaled 1 winner from 3 runners (0-1 with 2yos, 0-2 with sprinters).  The dam is a half-sister to juvenile Grade 2 winner Dubleo (7-13, 422K, 6-9 at two, 2-4 sprinting).  The gray colt turns all the way back in distance and could be outsprinted early.

Selections:
1. Thunder Harbor
2. Tiempo Libre
3. Patriotic Dream

The Play:
Thunder Harbor to Win and Place at 6-1 odds or greater