Sadler 'Excited' About Debut of Flightline's Half-Brother

Eagles Flight | Christie DeBernardis

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There are three graded stakes races on Monday's card at Santa Anita, but the most anticipated race of the day may be the eighth, a $54,000 maiden race run at six furlongs. That's because it features the debut of Eagles Flight (Curlin) a 3-year-old half-brother to Flightline (Tapit).

Like Flightline, Eagles Flight is trained by John Sadler.

“I am excited,” Sadler said. “We've been working closely with him and he's showing good run and he's worked well in company. We've got 48 hours to go and we're anxious to get him out there and see it happen.”

Like Flightline, Eagles Flight was bred by Jane Lyon's Summer Wind Equine and was originally entered in the 2022 Keeneland September sale. But Lyon changed her mind, withdrew the horse from the sale and decided to campaign him herself. Hronis Racing LLC, which also owned a part of Flightline, has since come aboard as a co-owner.

Sadler said the reason the horse did not run earlier is that there were some small problems that needed to be addressed.

“He had some immaturity issues last year at two,” Sadler said. “He also had a little shin problem. We had to wait for that to resolve itself. Now he's trained up for his 3-year-old start.”

Eagles Flight had his first published workout on Mar. 27 and has been working steadily since. In his most recent work, on May 19, he breezed five furlongs in 58.80. Sadler has been impressed.

“We're looking forward to getting started on Monday,” he said. “The pedigree speaks for itself. There are no secrets there. He's a good-looking prospect and we're expecting a good race from him first time out. He drew inside with the two post, so he's got to get away cleanly. He had good training the last five, six weeks with no interruptions. There was some weather issues earlier in the meet, but he's good to go.”

When asked to compare Eagles Flight to Flightline, Sadler wouldn't bite.

“He looks like a good prospect,” he said. “But I don't really do the comparison thing because obviously that wouldn't be fair to any horse. He looks like he can run and we can't wait for Monday. I wish it was tomorrow.”

In town to ride in the three stakes, Flavien Prat has the call on Eagles Flight. He also rode Flightline.

Outside of Flightline, the dam Feathered (Indian Charlie) has not had a lot of success. There is the 5-year-old Voron (Pioneerof the Nile) who has been sent to Russia. Next in line was a full brother Olivier (Tapit), who did not hit the board in three starts and was returned to Summer Wind last month, where he will live out his days.

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