INSTAGRAND (c, Into Mischief—Assets of War, by Lawyer Ron)
‘TDN Rising Star’. O-OXO Equine LLC. B-Stoneway Farm (KY). T-Jerry Hollendorfer. Sales History: $190,000 Ylg ’17 FTKJUL; $1,200,000 2yo ’18 FTFMAR. Lifetime Record: GSW, 2-2-0-0, $144,000.
Jan. 8 TDN Top 12 Ranking: 7
Last Start: 1st, GII Best Pal S., DMR, Aug. 11
Next Start: Uncommitted
Equineline PPs. KY Derby Points: 0.
Although his dossier of workouts continues to expand–six published drills since Dec. 30, including a :59 five-eighths (2/35) at Santa Anita on Friday–the heavy-with-intrigue tale of Instagrand remains largely unchanged (at least publicly) since the unorthodox decision to back off from training last September. Owner Larry Best reportedly wanted a more robust sophomore season out of his $1.2 million FTFMAR investment after this Into Mischief colt won his debut and the GII Best Pal S. by a combined 20 1/4 lengths, but no commitment has been announced for Instagrand’s 2019 coming-out party. We can speculate, though: Instagrand is nominated to Saturday’s seven-furlong GII San Vicente S. (entries close Thursday). There appear to be no suitable dirt allowance races for 3-year-olds in the current Santa Anita condition book that runs through Feb. 18. The Feb. 16 Risen Star S. at Fair Grounds is worth mentioning (because the Best-owned, Jerry Hollendorfer-trained Instilled Regard shipped for that race last year), and Instagrand got an early-bird nomination to the Risen Star by virtue of being an early nominee to the GII Louisiana Derby. Figuring out where and when this two-race sensation might pop up in the entries could end up being more of a challenge than handicapping his chances of winning when he does finally race.