02/15/2016 12:50PM

Two mares shine for Godolphin

Kenny Martin/Coglianese Photos
Penwith wins the Grade 2 Royal Delta Stakes at Gulfstream on Saturday.

Perennial leading owner and breeder Godolphin, once again an Eclipse Award finalist under the Darley banner in 2015, has picked up right where it left off. On Saturday, the operation sent out two blue-blooded homebreds to capture their first graded events, with Penwith taking the Grade 2 Royal Delta Stakes at Gulfstream Park and Dancing House upsetting the Grade 2 Barbara Fritchie Stakes at Laurel. Both mares returned from long layoffs last month and appear to be in the best form of their careers.

Penwith, by Darley sire Bernardini, knocked at the door in graded company in her first two seasons of racing, finishing third in the Grade 2 Demoiselle Stakes as a juvenile and third in the following year’s Grade 2 Indiana Oaks. Coming back off a layoff of nearly a year, she won an optional claimer by two lengths last month at Gulfstream to prepare for the Royal Delta.

Penwith is out of Composure, a Grade 2-winning juvenile who was also multiple Grade 1-placed. The daughter of Touch Gold finished a game second to champion Storm Flag Flying in the 2002 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies. Darley purchased the mare for $3.6 million at the 2003 Keeneland November breeding stock sale, and she produced Grade 1-placed Tranquil Manner and Centring prior to Penwith. Both of those runners are by A.P. Indy, the sire of Bernardini.

Dancing House, by leading sire Tapit, was graded-stakes-placed on dirt and turf as a juvenile, finishing third in the Grade 1 Spinaway Stakes and the Grade 3 Miss Grillo Stakes. She won both of her starts last year in optional-claiming company before going to the sidelines. Off a nine-month layoff, she was second in the Interborough Stakes against champion La Verdad last month before posting this breakthrough victory.

Dancing House is the first stakes horse out of the multiple Grade 1-winning Slewvescent mare Tout Charmant, making her from the family of champion sprinter Artax.