Feb. 27 Insights: Pricey Curlin Half to Hawkbill Debuts at Gulfstream

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Coastal Defense in the ring at Keeneland September | Keeneland

4th-GP, $50K, Msw, 4yo/up, 6 1/2f, 2:31 p.m. ET

Albaugh Family Stables, which will start likely GII Fasig-Tipton Fountain of Youth S. favorite Dennis’ Moment (Tiznow) this Saturday at Gulfstream, also has action Thursday in Hallandale Beach, as they debut the expensive and well-related COASTAL DEFENSE (Curlin) in the day’s fourth event. Owned in partnership with Helen K. Groves Revocable Trust, the chestnut hammered for $800,000 at Keeneland September in 2017 and is a half-brother to MG1SW Hawkbill (Kitten’s Joy), as well as the Albaughs’ GISW Free Drop Billy (Union Rags). Out of GSP Trensa (Giant’s Causeway), Coastal Defense’s second dam is GISW Serape (Fappiano), while third dam Mochila (In Reality) was a SW who placed in three Grade Is herself. Trained–like Dennis’ Moment and Free Drop Billy–by Dale Romans, he shows a light but quick worktab, recording three local bullet breezes, including a half-mile in :47 4/5 (1/13) Jan. 22 (XBTV video).

Drawn the rail, his two most intriguing rivals are parked next door, with Godolphin’s Unshaken (Tapit) occupying the two post and Christine and Phil Hatfield’s Groundbreaking (Tapit) in the three-hole. The former, who was a debut fourth as the favorite last April at Keeneland, is a half to GSW/MGISP Penwith (Bernardini), MGISP Centring (A.P. Indy) and GISP Tranquil Manner (A.P. Indy) out of MGISW Composure (Touch Gold). Returning as a new gelding, the bay has been working swiftly for Kiaran McLaughlin at Palm Meadows, most recently going a half-mile in :48 1/5 (8/32) Feb. 18. The latter, who opens his account here for the Ian Wilkes barn, is a half to MGISW Palace (City Zip) and drilled a five-furlong bullet in 1:01 2/5 (1/10) from the gate Feb. 11 at Palm Meadows. TJCIS PPs @JBiancaTDN

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