Updated on 09/17/2011 6:52PM

Wilko purchase pays off a little early

Wilko, under a jubilant Frankie Dettori, soars by the leaders in deep stretch to win the Juvenile - and pay this Cup's biggest price, $58.60.

GRAND PRAIRIE, Texas - J. Paul Reddam bought a majority interest in Wilko with an eye more on the future than the present. The future is now.

After outfinishing a trio of North America's top 2-year-old colts to win Saturday's $1.5 million by three-quarters of a length at Lone Star Park, Wilko may try to strengthen his case to earn an Eclipse Award as North America's top 2-year-old by running in the Grade 1 Hollywood Futurity on Dec. 18.

Sixteen of the previous 20 Juvenile winners were crowned champion. But Wilko had a mediocre 2-for-10 record in Europe and was a most unlikely Juvenile winner at odds of 28-1. Afleet Alex, a multiple stakes winner who had trouble while second in the Juvenile, and Declan's Moon, the Del Mar Futurity winner who skipped the Breeders' Cup to target the Hollywood Prevue on Nov. 20 and perhaps the Hollywood Futurity, are also in the running for championship honors.

As was the plan when Reddam purchased a 75 percent interest in the colt in early October, Wilko on Sunday was shipped to Southern California, where he took up residence in trainer Craig Dollase's Hollywood Park barn.

Dollase said he and Reddam have discussed the possibility of running Wilko in the Hollywood Futurity.

"It's in the back of our minds," Dollase said Monday from Southern California. "We might need to do a little more. We'll do right by the horse obviously. He's not lacking for being a tough guy. He's really a durable little horse; I can see that by being around him."

The last Juvenile winner to run after the Breeders' Cup in his 2-year-old year was Brocco in 1993. Brocco's Juvenile victory made him 3 for 3, and he went on to finish second to Valiant Nature in the Hollywood Futurity. Dehere, a four-time stakes winner before finishing eighth in the Juvenile, was crowned champion 2-year-old.

In Saturday's Juvenile, Wilko broke sharply and stalked the pacesetting Twice Unbridled, but appeared to be dropping back around the far turn. Even jockey Frankie Dettori thought he was going to finish fourth after Consolidator, Afleet Alex, and Sun King were in front of him at the quarter pole.

But Dettori noted that trio "didn't go anywhere," so Dettori swung Wilko four wide and felt the colt gaining momentum in the stretch.

"He started to pick up and I knew I was going to win," Dettori said.

Afleet Alex, who bobbled at the break, finished second, a neck ahead of Sun King. Consolidator, Roman Ruler, Proud Accolade, Twice Unbridled, and Scandinavia completed the order of finish.

Wilko covered the 1 1/16 miles in 1:42.09, which was slower than Sweet Catomine's winning time [1:41.65] in the Juvenile Fillies earlier on the card.

Reddam, a California-based businessman, purchased a majority interest in Wilko from England-based Susan Roy after the colt finished third in the Group 2 Royal Lodge Stakes on Sept. 25. He had a record of 2-2-4 from 10 starts

"I liked the fact the horse did not have much of a turn of foot, he just kept coming and coming, and he demonstrated that today - his tenacity," Reddam said. "He just wants to stay and go and go and go."

Jeremy Noseda trained Wilko in England and thought the colt would take to the dirt being a son of Breeders' Cup Classic winner Awesome Again. But, even Noseda wasn't confident Wilko could win the race.

"I thought we could get a piece of it, I never in my wildest dreams thought we could get the whole lot," Noseda said.

Afleet Alex, who won the Sanford and Hopeful at Saratoga, returned to Delaware Park on Monday and is not expected to race again this year. He will winter at Oaklawn Park. Trainer Tim Ritchey believes Afleet Alex should be crowned champion 2-year-old.

"No other 2-year-old has done what he has done," Ritchey said. "He showed up every race. He won one Grade 1, finished a game second with trouble in in two other Grade 1's, and won [the Grade 2 Sanford], in which he broke a 34-year-old track record and ran faster than Secretariat in the race."

According to trainer Nick Zito, Sun King came out of the Juvenile with a little shin problem. "He didn't buck," Zito said. "We'll send him to Kentucky and fire the shin."