3rd-SA, $55,359, Msw, 1-13, 3yo, 5 1/2f, 1:04.40, ft.
NERO (c, 3, Pioneerof the Nile–Ocean Goddess, by Stormy Atlantic) was beaten as the 1-2 favorite by a nose at Del Mar Aug. 27 behind next-out stakes winner Beautiful Shot (Trappe Shot). The even-money favorite raced to the outside of stablemate Curly’s Rocket (Into Mischief) through a quick opening quarter in :22.07. Those two were still head and head, but felt the on-coming Core Beliefs (Quality Road) right behind them turning for home. They continued to battle, while holding off that challenge, all the way to the wire with Nero getting his nose down first for the graduation. Nero was a $950,000 yearling purchase at the Fasig-Tipton Saratoga sale. He is a half to Ocean Knight, GSW, $390,000. Their dam also has a juvenile colt by Medaglia d’Oro and a yearling filly by Curlin. Lifetime Record: 2-1-1-0, $44,400. Click for the Equibase.com chart or VIDEO, sponsored by Fasig-Tipton.
O-M. Tabor, M. Magnier, D. Smith & Stonestreet Stables LLC; B-Thor-Bred Stables, LLC (KY); T-Bob Baffert.