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Keeneland Babies for October 8
Welcome to Keeneland Babies! I'll analyze every juvenile contest at the meet.
Saturday, October 8, 2011
7 Furlongs (Polytrack)
Maiden Special Weight
HARMONY HILLS is the first starter by the sire Gaddis, an unraced half-brother to multiple Grade 3 turf winner Keertana and turf stakes-winner Snow Top Mountain. Harmony Hills was outsprinted in the early going of her career debut on grass at Kentucky Downs, but finished evenly for third and was flattered when the runner-up returned to graduate a week later with a 61 Beyer. The winner of that heat, Ready to Unleash, came back to finish second over polytrack here yesterday afternoon. Harmony Hills' form looks remarkably similar to that of trainer Ken McPeek's Myroslaw, a gelding that finished second in the debut at Kentucky Downs going six furlongs in 2008 before scoring 18 days later at seven panels at Keeneland. According to the "Keeneland Clocker Report" for October 1, Harmony Hills was outworked by Santonio d'Oro, an unraced juvenile.
BREEZE SHOW, by Giant's Causeway (18-202, 9% with juvenile debut runners), was a $45,000 RNA earlier this year after selling for that amount as a yearling. The dam went 1-16 in Japan (won maiden at two) and has foaled one winner from three runners (0-2 with juveniles). The second dam is multiple Group 1 turf winner Kooyanga. The Giant's Causeway - Seeking the Gold breeding 'nick' has produced Grade 1 winners Swift Temper, Internallyflawless and Carriage Trail. The latter won the Spinster over the Keeneland polytrack. Trainer Andrew McKeever is 0-23 over the past two years with debut runners. Breeze Show is a price stab.
TAPAJO, a half-sister to juvenile stakes-placed sprinter Spooked (16-1-2-4, 50K), is by Tapit (78-496, 16% with juvenile runners). A $65,000 yearling that resold for $70,000 earlier this year, Tapajo was working nicely leading up to her debut at Saratoga and ran an even third at this trip. The fourth-finisher returned to graduate with a 67 Beyer. Trainer Steve Asmussen is 0-9 over the past five years with second-time juveniles switching from dirt to synthetics in maiden special weight sprints.
INNY MINNIE broke well, but was rated to the pocket position in her career debut sprinting on the grass at Saratoga. She eased out at the top of the stretch and finished evenly despite switching leads more than once in the lane. In her second-start, she battled hard with a longshot in the early going. After she put that foe away, she didn't have anything left to contain Todd Pletcher's Sweet Cat. Inny Minnie, by Hard Spun (13-61, 21% with juveniles), is a half-sister to juvenile stakes-winner Welcome Inn (12-3-3-2, 177K) and juvenile Group 2 turf winner Montgomery's Arch. Inny Minnie figures to show good speed under the hot-riding Julien Leparoux and looms a strong contender.
CAL DELA CASA gave a "good work, good gallop-out in 58/2," according to the "Keeneland Clocker Report" for October 3. In her most recent start, Cal Dela Casa finished fourth behind Colormesaichi, an 18-1 longshot that returned to finish fourth in the Sorority Stakes at Monmouth with a 51 Beyer before running fourth in the Grade 3 Tempted with a 55 Beyer at Belmont. The sire is 36-207 (17%) with juvenile performers.
DO THE CHARLESTON is by Master Command (6-55, 11%) out of Grade 3-placed juvenile Sisti's Pride (10-1-1-2, 70K). She broke poorly from the inside in her career debut at Hoosier, but rallied belatedly for fourth, finishing ahead of two next-out graduates. The winner of that race, Taxi Dancer, returned to run second in the $100,000 Maryland Million Lassie at Laurel with a 54 Beyer. Do the Charleston can move forward with normal second-out improvement, but must deal with the intimidating inside post once again.
GAME FAIR is by Quiet American (20-365, 5% with juvenile debut runners) and is the first starter out of Grade 1 route winner Passing Shot (27-6-6-5, 633K). The second dam is Grade 3 winner Aucilla (34-9-2-9, 311K). The workouts fail to entice, however, and this filly may do better with added maturity and distance. Trainer Graham Motion sent out juvenile debut winner Rampaige (2-1 odds) last fall going seven furlongs at Keeneland.
TRUE BLUE JULIE, by Bluegrass Cat (38-276, 14% with juvenile runners) out of multiple stakes-placed Julie Truly (36-4-4-9, 114K), finished second in her most recent start on dirt at Hoosier Park. The winner of that race returned to run second in an entry-level optional claimer with a 79 Beyer.
CLEAR DANGER, a $70,000 RNA as a yearling, is out of stakes-winner Present Danger (24-4-3-9, 209K). She broke poorly in her lone start to date, a maiden special weight over the Arlington polytrack. Of the 10 horses to run back from that August 21 race, only one cracked the trifecta next-out (best Beyer of the 10 was a 50).
CALL ME NANCY, a $12,000 yearling that became a $100,000 RNA earlier this year, is by Political Force (5-40, 13% with juveniles). She is a half-sister to juvenile Grade 2 winner Dancinginherdreams (5-2-2-0, 216K, won impressively at Keeneland). She ran into And Why Not (next-out third in the Grade 1 Spinaway before finishing sixth in the Alcibiades here yesterday) at Saratoga and didn't have an easy trip. Perhaps she can improve with the addition of Lasix.
SATURDAY'S MIRACLE is a three-quarter sister to stakes-winner Spin Master (17-5-2-3, 229K). She showed speed in her first synthetic start, but may face some early pressure from horses like Inny Minnie here. The winner of that September 6 heat at Presque Isle returned to finish fifth in the Presque Isle Downs Debutante with a 60 Beyer.
1. Harmony Hills
2. Breeze Show
Harmony Hills - Breeze Show Exacta
Harmony Hills - Tapajo Exacta
7 Furlongs (Polytrack)
Maiden Special Weight
TRADING PAINT, a $65,000 RNA as a yearling, was purchased for $175,000 earlier this season. By a sire that is 132-741 (18%) with juvenile performers, Trading Paint hails from the female family of Breeders' Cup Sprint winner Desert Stormer. On paper, Trading Paint's form looks virtually identical to that of Seven Lively Sins, an Al Stall-trained juvenile that won second-out at Keeneland yesterday after placing in his career debut at Saratoga. Trading Paint may not be the biggest filly in the fight, but she should have gained valuable experience from her debut, a race in which she was in and among horses on the backstretch. She advanced while three wide on the turn and ran on well to the wire, finishing second to a promising Bill Mott-trained runner named Refining. The fourth-place finisher from that race, Newbie, returned to graduate at Belmont with a 67 Beyer. Trading Paint projects for a solid stalking trip under Shane Sellers and should be prominent when the field swings into the stretch.
INDYNIABLE is by the great A.P. Indy (45-385, 12% with juvenile debut runners) and is the first starter out of multiple stakes-winning router Maizelle (by Seeking the Gold, 7-4-3-0, 158K). The second dam is multiple stakes-winner Corona Lite (11-6-1-2, 246K). The A.P. Indy - Seeking the Gold breeding 'nick" has produced Canadian juvenile filly champion Catch the Thrill. Trainer Christophe Clement is 0-4 over the past five years with juvenile debut runners in synthetic maiden special weight sprints.
ANNACLONE, an $8,500 yearling that resold for $105,000 in May, is a half-sister to stakes-winning sprinter Stroll By (17-3-3-4, 42K) by a sire that is 62-417 (15%) with juvenile performers. Annaclone finished only three lengths behind Grace Hall in her career debut on dirt at Delaware and that foe returned to win the Grade 1 Spinaway at Saratoga with an 85 Beyer Speed Figure. In Annaclone's second start, she had the misfortune to run into runaway winner Broadways Alibi. This is the female family of multiple graded winners Region and Announce. Over the past five years, trainer Michael Stidham is 0-7 with juveniles going dirt to synthetic.
TWITTER PIE, a $45,000 RNA as a yearling, is by Harlan's Holiday (90-542, 17% with juvenile runners) out of stakes-placed Bird Chatter (17-6-5-0, 92K). She'll add Lasix for her second start after chasing next-out winner Holiday Soiree (80 Beyer in entry-level optional claimer at Hoosier and is entered in the Grade 1 Frizette at Belmont over the weekend).
JAZIL'S SONG, by first-crop sire Jazil (Belmont Stakes winner, 0-11 with juveniles), was a $19,000 RNA as a yearling. She doesn’t have much early speed, but made up late ground in all three of her races. Jazil's Song exits a heat that produced next-out winner Songs and Sonnets (58 Beyer in maiden special weight on turf at Arlington). Expect another late flurry, but Jazil's Song may be best played on the bottom of exotic wagers.
CYPRESS POND is by Lemon Drop Kid (19-183, 10% with juvenile debut runners) out of a sprint-winning Deputy Minister mare (9-2-0-1, 57K, juvenile debut winner) that has foaled four winners from six runners (1-3 with juveniles). Cypress Pond is a half-sister to Grade 3-placed turf performer Clear Pond (10-2-0-1, 74K). The dam is a half-sister to Grade 1 route winner Talinum (22-6-7-4, 737K) and Grade 1-placed turf runner Gharam. The Lemon Drop Kid - Deputy Minister breeding 'nick' has produced multiple stakes-winner Lemon Drop Mom. According to the "Keeneland Clocker Report" for October 2, Cypress Pond was outworked by Magical Moment, although neither runner was being urged. Magical Moment is a juvenile, trained by Rusty Arnold, with a 49 Beyer on turf. Over the last six months, Arnold is 2-5 (40%, $11.16 ROI) with juvenile debut runners in synthetic maiden special weight sprints.
MISS RUUD, by Van Nistelrooy (38-348, 11% with juvenile runners), just missed in her career debut at 5 1/2 furlongs on grass at Ellis Park. She finished directly ahead of Ready to Unleash, a filly that returned to graduate on grass at Kentucky Downs with a 64 Beyer before finishing second in her polytrack debut here yesterday. Like uncoupled stablemate Twitter Pie, Miss Ruud will add Lasix for her second outing.
COASTING, by Smart Strike (150-846, 17% with juvenile runners) out of Grade 2 winner Cat Cay (25-8-4-7, 488K), failed to do much running after a poor start in her career debut around two turns over Saratoga sod. The winner of that race returned to finish last of 12 in the Grade 3 Natalma. She may appreciate turning back in distance and switching to the main track while attracting Garrett Gomez, but is saddled with a tough inside post.
GRACE LIKE RAIN raced evenly after a poor start in her career debut at the Spa and may not have appreciate the sloppy conditions presented to her for her subsequent outing on August 21. By a sire that is 214-1416 (15%) with juvenile runners, Grace Like Rain is out of stakes-winning sprinter Graziella (22-4-4-3, 126K).
BRAVE FLEET pressed the pace throughout in her career debut at Hoosier on September 16. She is by Afleet Alex (36-278, 13% with juveniles) and projects for a good outside stalking journey under Kent Desormeaux.
ROYAL FURY is by Langfuhr (35-374, 9% with juvenile debut runners) out of a dam that won her lone lifetime start (on grass at Del Mar with 84 Beyer). That dam foaled a prior starter that didn't win and didn't race at two. The second dam is stakes-winning turf runner Society's Dream. Royal Fury's frequent workmate, trainer Paul McGee's juvenile Pandering, finished second in his career debut on September 30 with a 32 Beyer in a $25,000 maiden claimer. McGee is 0-26 over the past three years with juvenile debut runners.
1. Trading Paint
Trading Paint - Indyniable Exacta
Trading Paint - Annaclone Exacta
1 1/16 Miles (Polytrack)
Dixiana Breeders' Futurity (G1)
LUCKY CHAPPY, by Breeders' Cup Turf winner High Chaparral out of juvenile Group 3 turf winner Germane (10-1-1-3, 46K, won at seven furlongs), is a half-sister to multiple stakes-placed turf performer Granted (15-3-3-5, 55K, all wins at one mile racing overseas). He'll stretch out in distance for his North American, and synthetic, debut as he makes his first start for the powerful Team Valor Stables and may find a nice spot in midpack under the great Ramon Dominguez. Lucky Chappy has been training steadily since being imported from Italy and foreign runners have performed well in past runnings of the Breeders' Futurity (Square Eddie shipped in from England to win this race in 2008).
TAKE CHARGE INDY, an $80,000 Keeneland September yearling RNA, is by Belmont Stakes and Breeders' Cup Classic winner A.P. Indy out of multiple Grade 1 winner Take Charge Lady (22-11-7-0, 2.2M). After pressing the pace to win his debut at six furlongs over two next-out graduates, Take Charge Lady made the front turning for home in the Grade 3 Arlington-Washington Futurity contested over a one-turn mile on September 10. He was outfinished that afternoon, but adds blinkers for trainer Pat Byrne, who won this race in 1997 with Favorite Trick. Take Charge Indy may be closer to the pace this afternoon and has a ton of upside potential.
MAJESTIC CITY finished ahead of Creative Cause in the recent Del Mar Futurity at seven furlongs and was flattered when that one came back to win the Grade 1 Norfolk with an 84 Beyer Speed Figure. He was getting tired in that race, however, drifting out during the closing stages and must be considered questionable at this route distance (by seven-furlong Hopeful winner City Zip out of a sprint-winning Meadowlake mare). Majestic City handles polytrack and owns excellent Beyer Speed Figures. He looms a strong pace presence in this spot, but must prove his stamina.
SHARED PROPERTY, a perfect 2-2 for 31% YTD trainer Tom Amoss, is by the promising first-crop sire Scat Daddy out of multiple stakes-winner Yoursmineours (15-5-2-4, 143K). He's overcome some adverse circumstances to win both lifetime starts and outfinished Take Charge Indy with a strong late surge in the Arlington-Washington Futurity. This will be his first start around two turns, but he's done nothing wrong and must be considered a prime contender under Leandro Goncalves.
PERSONAL INTEREST, a full brother to juvenile stakes-placed sprinter Dust and Diamonds (3-2-0-1, 57K), is mired on the also-eligible list after setting the pace in his two-turn debut at Calder on September 17. He faltered in the late stages of that race, however, is still a maiden after three starts, hasn't gained ground from the stretch call to the wire in any of his races, and would break from a poor post position if he gets to play. The distance may be a bit far for him.
MOTOR CITY, a half-brother to stakes-winning turf sprinter Satulagi (18-2-2-2, 85K), was up and on the pace in his first two sprint outings at Ellis Park. Thus, it was somewhat surprising to see him rally from twelfth when stretched out for the first time in the Arlington-Washington Futurity. He did make up some ground in the stretch, has enough pedigree to see out this trip, and may be more forwardly-placed this time around.
OPTIMIZER pulled off a 27-1 shocker in his career debut at this distance on grass at Saratoga and was flattered when the eighth-place finisher, Sabercat, returned to win two in a row on dirt (including the Garden State Stakes at Monmouth with a 75 Beyer). In his initial start against winners, Optimizer raced greenly on his left lead in the stretch, but almost overcame State of Play's pace advantage. It wouldn't be surprising if this colt successfully translates his good turf form to the polytrack surface.
MUSICAL FLAIR rallied from off the pace to win the Fasig-Tipton Dash, a five-furlong turf event at Calder on August 27 (the runner-up from that race came back to finish second, with a 63 Beyer, in a $40,000 starter allowance on dirt). He draws a good inside post position for his two-turn debut, but must stretch out 3 1/2 furlongs and has no racing experience on polytrack. According to the "Keeneland Clocker Report" for October 5, Musical Flair "finished full of run, E Valentino could not keep up."
DULLAHAN is still a maiden, but the half-brother to Kentucky Derby hero Mine That Bird (18-5-2-2, 2.2M) has improved since being stretched out around two turns by trainer Dale Romans. He hasn't shown a strong stretch punch in either one of his two grass races, but seems to be moving the right way and has enough tactical speed to work out a good midpack trip under Kent Desormeaux.
SPACE RACE, a half-brother to Grade 3-placed router Bear's Rocket (25-5-8-2, 266K), was a runaway debut winner going two turns over the Delaware dirt track on September 10. It looks like this colt has some ability to go along with his tactical speed, but switching surfaces is a question mark and one must wonder what he beat in the debut. Trainer Michael Matz has sent out live juveniles all season (6-20, 30%, $7.58 ROI over the past 90 days with 2-year-old runners).
GUNG HO improved his Beyer 22 points when winning the $150,000 Sunday Silence Stakes at one mile on turf (both the ninth- and eleventh-place runners from that start came back to win). He looked solid and professional in that race and projects for a closing trip here under the ever-patient Julien Leparoux. Gung Ho is a full brother to stakes-placed router Kitten's Dancer (6-1-1-0, 20K). His trainer, Michael Maker, has been on an absolute tear of late (21-59, 36%, $2.44 ROI over the last 30 days).
OUR ENTOURAGE, by Street Cry out of Grade 1 turf winner Sand Springs (27-9-4-2, 1.2M), is a half-brother to French stakes-winning turfer Mellon Martini (7-2-1-0, 81K, scored at ten furlongs overseas). The Todd Pletcher-trained colt was working very well leading up to his debut at Saratoga, but had the misfortune to face the very impressive Fire On Ice when second going six furlongs on August 27. Pletcher switched Our Entourage to grass, and stretched him out in distance, for his second start and he responded with a pace-pressing triumph. Please note that Pletcher is 1-38 (3%, $0.11 ROI) over the past five years when running a first-time synthetic performer in a graded stakes.
Although E VALENTINO won his first two starts sprinting, he hasn't shown the same zest since being stretched out in distance and he was no match for Gung Ho in the Sunday Silence Stakes. He did have some trouble in that event, but must improve by leaps and bounds to upset the field here.
ANCIL, another maiden facing winners, earned stakes-placed status when second in the Chenery going 5 1/2 furlongs on grass at Colonial Downs. He finished third behind the promising Fantastic Song at Saratoga on August 20 and that one returned to run third in the Grade 3 Pilgrim Stakes at Belmont with a 71 Beyer.
FIRE ALARM rallied from off the pace to win his career debut over the Tapeta surface at Presque Isle Downs on September 2, but the Beyer came back a light 49. He boasts a stout pedigree, but would break from a tough post if he gets in from the also-eligible list.
CURFEW TOWER was well-beaten in two starts against entry-level optional claimers and hasn't gained late ground since his career debut at 4 1/2 furlongs. Third in the Chenery behind Ancil, his best Beyer stands at 61, and that pales in comparison to the numbers earned by the top contenders.
1. Lucky Chappy
2. Take Charge Indy
3. Majestic City
Lucky Chappy to Win and Place at 9-2 odds or greater.