Gun Runner Colt Takes it to Them 'Early' in Withers

Early Voting | Janet Garaguso

Early Voting (Gun Runner) was hammered into 6-5 favoritism off a strong local debut win while facing much more seasoned rivals in Saturday's GIII Withers S. at the Big A and ran to the money with a dominating score.

Hesitant to get into the starting gate for the 1 1/8-miles affair offering 10 GI Kentucky Derby points to the winner, he had his mind on business once they sprung the latches. Hustled to the front by Jose Ortiz from his outside draw from post nine for this two-turn debut in the mud, Early Voting quickly cleared the field and it was pretty much over from there. The Klaravich Stables colorbearer led comfortably through sharp fractions of :23.57 and :48.04, gave them the slip rounding the far turn and was in a race of his own down the stretch to win by 4 1/2 lengths while becoming the fifth graded stakes winner for last year's champion freshman sire.

Longshot Un Ojo (Laoban) rallied from last of 11 to complete the exacta.

Early Voting, a $200,000 KEESEP graduate, previously dueled free to win on debut as the 4-5 favorite with a 76 Beyer Speed Figure going a one-turn mile at Aqueduct Dec. 18.

“He showed some speed in his first race, so we were pretty confident that he would stretch out even further to a mile and an eighth,” said Dan Stupp, assistant to winning trainer Chad Brown.

“He broke well and Jose [Ortiz] did the rest from there. I was confident in the mile and an eighth. He's out of a Tiznow mare, so he's bred to run all day. We were very confident in the distance.”

Stupp continued, “He's a horse that's going to progress with each race. Each race is going to propel him, and we've seen that in the morning with him. He was very impressive in his works. Especially, in his last two works leading up to this. He's an exciting horse and I was really ready to see him run today. I think he'll move forward nicely in his 3-year-old year.”

Pedigree Notes:

Wunderkind Gun Runner, the runaway leading first-crop sire based at Three Chimneys, kickstarted 2022 the same way he ended 2021, with progeny performances in major races that leave one wondering what might be ahead for sire sensation. Approximately an hour after his sophomore filly Radio Days finished a close second in the GIII Forward Gal S. Saturday, his Early Voting did one better in the Withers. Additionally, his McLaren Vale was second in last week's GII San Vicente S., his Pappacap was recently third in the GIII Lecomte S., and his GISWs Echo Zulu and Gunite have yet to make their 2022 debuts. Overall, Gun Runner has eight black-type winners, with a remarkable five of them graded winners.

Early Voting was bred to be a racehorse. His unraced dam–a $1.75-million KEESEP yearling in 2013–is a full-sister to 2017 GII Blue Grass S. winner and MGISP Irap (Tiznow), as well as a half-sister to champion racehorse and leading sire Speightstown (Gone West). They're all out of Canadian champion Silken Cat and trace back to 1950 Broodmare of the Year Hildene (Bubbling Over), Silken Cat's fifth dam. Amour d'Ete has a 2-year-old full-sister to Early Voting, a yearling filly by Constitution, and was bred back to Volatile, all matings done by Three Chimneys. Amour d'Ete's pensioned sire, Tiznow, is the broodmare sire of 52 black-type winners, including 2020 Classic winner Tiz the Law (Constitution).

Saturday, Aqueduct
WITHERS S.-GIII, $250,000, Aqueduct, 2-5, 3yo, 1 1/8m, 1:55.90, my.
1–EARLY VOTING, 118, c, 3, by Gun Runner
                1st Dam: Amour d'Ete, by Tiznow
                2nd Dam: Silken Cat, by Storm Cat
                3rd Dam: Silken Doll, by Chieftain
Ylg '20 KEESEP). O-Klaravich Stables, Inc.; B-Three Chimneys
Farm, LLC (KY); T-Chad C. Brown; J-Jose L. Ortiz. $137,500.
Lifetime Record: 2-2-0-0, $181,500. Werk Nick Rating: C. Click
for the eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree.
2–Un Ojo, 118, g, 3, Laoban–Risk a Chance, by A.P. Indy.
1ST GRADED BLACK TYPE. O-Cypress Creek Equine;
B-Southern Equine Stables, LLC (NY); T-Anthony W. Dutrow.
3–Gilded Age, 118, c, 3, Medaglia d'Oro–Angela Renee, by
($600,000 Ylg '20 KEESEP). O-Grandview Equine and Don
Alberto Stable; B-Don Alberto Corporation (KY); T-William I.
Mott. $30,000.
Margins: 4HF, HD, 1 3/4. Odds: 1.30, 28.25, 6.80.
Also Ran: Grantham, Noneedtoworry, Smarten Up, Courvoisier, Cooke Creek, Mr Jefferson, Unbridled Bomber, Constitutionlawyer. Click for the chart, the PPs or the free catalogue-style pedigree. VIDEO, sponsored by TVG.


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