JEFF SIEGEL’S EAST COAST BLACK BOOK
(For the week of April 20-24)
DEAR ELAINE (April 23rd, 8th race, Kee) – Showed some promise in a pair of starts last fall as a two-year-old and confirmed that ability in this very impressive sophomore debut vs. maiden special weight foes in a rapid extended main track sprint. Settled just off the pace in a good stalking position outside, moved closer on the turn to press the leaders, then took complete control when set down for the drive and drew clear in sharp style to be much best like a filly who can win again soon. Daughter of Broken Vow should have no trouble stretching out, so good trainer Charlie Lo Presti has some options. Sophomore filly should be seen again next month at Churchill Downs.
EOL (April 23rd, 7th race, GP) – Debuting son of Harlan’s Holiday probably didn’t have a whole lot behind him when graduating at first asking by 11 ½ lengths in this maiden special weight six furlong sprint, but he did it the right way and seems sure to climb the ladder for Pletcher. Though his final clocking for the seven furlong trip wasn’t fancy (1:24.22), the final furlong furlong (:12.23) really caught our eye and gives strong indication that this $475,000 Keeneland yearling purchase will stretch out nicely. Will clean up in South Florida if kept on this circuit, though he could just as easily take his act to New York.
HALF IRISH (April 24th, 5th race. GP) – First timer by the top Australian stallion Lonhro could not have been more impressive winning a nine furlong maiden special weight turf event and looks to be a sophomore filly with stakes potential. Established the pace in hand while displaying a lovely, athletic stride, kicked clear when straightened for home and left her rivals easily to record a 5 ½ length score while blazing the final furlong in 11 1/5 seconds. Clearly has much potential, so we’ll assume she’ll be headed to Clement’s main string at Belmont Park. Has a superior turn of foot but should run all day.
LADY AURELIA (April 21st, 3rd race, Kee) – Speedy butterball demolished her outclassed rivals as expected in her racing debut (she was 30 cents on the dollar) for juvenile trainer deluxe Wesley Ward, quickly establishing the pace in hand and then lengthening in the lane, scoring by more than seven lengths without really being asked. Daughter of Scat Daddy is the quickest baby we’ve seen so far and should be an ideal candidate for a trip to Royal Ascot in June. Bred to love turf and we suspect her British rivals won’t know which way she went.
PRIVATE CLIENT (April 23rd, 5th race, Kee) – Though she finished a distant second (beaten nine lengths) in her debut, this daughter of Kitten’s Joy has the look of a nice prospect and should be hard to deny next time out for trainer Thomas Proctor. Was taken well off the pace while saving ground in some traffic, remained blocked into the lane, then got clear and finished with good energy though much too late to make any impression on runaway winner Try Your Luck. Acts like she’ll enjoy more ground and figures to be tighter and sharper the next time she’s led over.