Nyquist Filly Romps in Spinaway

Vequist (Nyquist) suffered a nose defeat when debuting going 4 1/2 furlongs at Parx, but found no equals when stepped up into the GI Spinaway S. Sunday at Saratoga, pressing a fast pace and romping clear impressively in the stretch to break her maiden in the first Grade I race of the year for juveniles.

Unveiled as a tepid favorite July 29 in Bensalem for owner/breeder Swilcan Stables, the bay chased a wire to wire winner throughout and just missed when taking a final dive at her foe nearing the finish, finishing 8 1/2 lengths clear for of a next-out winner in third.

Off as the narrow fourth choice behind even-money 'TDN Rising Star' Beautiful Memories (Hard Spun), Vequist broke a step slowly, but quickly moved up to track frontrunning Esplanade (Daredevil) through a :22.41 quarter. The chalk, who was pulled up in her previous effort, again began to hit the breaks before the three-eighths pole, and Vequist and Esplanade separated themselves from the rest approaching the lane. Taking over at the top of the stretch, Vequist edged clear into the final furlong and poured it on from there, cruising under the line a dominant victress under Luis Saez.

The win was the second raid of a Saratoga Grade I for Thomas McGrath's Swilcan Stables and trainer Butch Reid, who upset the GI Alfred G. Vanderbilt H. with Poseidon's Warrior (Speightstown) in 2012.

“It was more about the morning training than it was her first race,” said Reid of running Vequist as a maiden in the Spinaway. “We breezed her out of the gate one time and she was only supposed to go a half-mile but she went in :48 and just kept going 1:01, 1:13 and 1:26. Even though we ran her in that 4 1/2-furlong race, it was more just getting a race under her belt. She was going to be looking for longer things down the road. You don't expect to win a Grade I with a maiden, but I knew the distance wasn't a problem.”

“The plan today was to try and follow the speed,” said Saez. “There was a lot of speed in the race so I wanted to break from there and find a good spot. Everything went so well, we broke and we were right there. When we got to the three-eighths I had a lot of horse and when we came to the stretch she took off.”

Pedigree Notes:

Vequist plants the Grade I flag early for her freshman sire (by Uncle Mo), just the eighth horse to win the GI Kentucky Derby while undefeated and first champion 2-year-old to win it since Seattle Slew in 1977. She is the Darley resident's fifth winner and second black-type winner, following Soaring Free S. hero Gretzky the Great. The first black-type performer out of 2014 GII Black-Eyed Susan S. runner-up Vero Amore, she has a yearling Astern (Aus) half-sister and a weanling half-sister by Daredevil. Vero Amore, a $15,000 purchase by Reid as juvenile in 2013, was bred to Accelerate this spring.

Sunday, Saratoga
SPINAWAY S.-GI, $250,000, Saratoga, 9-6, 2yo, f, 7f, 1:22.29, ft.
1–VEQUIST, 118, f, 2, by Nyquist#tot">Nyquist
                1st Dam: Vero Amore (GSP, $252,255), by Mineshaft
                2nd Dam: Summers Edge, by The Cliff's Edge
                3rd Dam: Miss Summer Reign, by Summer Squall
   WIN. ($120,000 RNA Ylg '19 KEESEP). O-Gary Barber, Wachtel
Stable & Swilcan Stable LLC; B-Swilcan Stables (KY); T-Robert E.
Reid, Jr.; J-Luis Saez. $137,500. Lifetime Record: 2-1-1-0,
$145,500. Werk Nick Rating: A+++. *Triple Plus*. Click for the  
strong>eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree
2–Esplanande, 122, f, 2, by Daredevil
                1st Dam: Southern Silence, by Dixie Union
                2nd Dam: Silence Dogood, by Grand Slam
                3rd Dam: Crystal Vous, by Crystal Water
O-WinStar Farm LLC, Timothy E. Hamm & Michael J. Lewis;
B-Blazing Meadows Farm LLC & WinStar Farm, LLC (OH);
T-Timothy E. Hamm. $50,000.
3–Lady Lilly, 120, f, 2, by Nyquist#tot">Nyquist
                1st Dam: Miss Inclined, by Pulpit
                2nd Dam: Seoul, by Deputy Minister
                3rd Dam: Nomo Robbery, by No Robbery
($280,000 Ylg '19 KEESEP). O-Phoenix Thoroughbred III;
B-Mueller Thoroughbred Stable, Ltd. (KY); T-Steven M.
Asmussen. $30,000.
Margins: 9HF, 1HF, 11 1/4. Odds: 6.60, 6.60, 7.30.
Also Ran: Irish Constitution, Guana Cay, Beautiful Memories.
Click for the Equibase.com chart, the TJCIS.com PPs or the free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree. VIDEO, sponsored by Fasig-Tipton.

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