Saturday's Insights: Freshly Minted Sophomores Debut


Champion Runhappy's half-brother debuts Saturday | Coady

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8th-GP, $50K, Msw, 3yo, 1 1/16mT, post time: 3:42 p.m. EDT
PRAYER BOOK (Uncle Mo) gets the new year and his career started for seven-time Eclipse-winning trainer Todd Pletcher. Stonestreet bred the half-brother to champion and triple Grade I winner Runhappy (Super Saver), then sold him for a $500,000 hammer price at Keeneland September and stayed in to race the now 3-year-old in partnership with Harrell Ventures LLC. Stonestreet had purchased his dam for $1.6 million in 2015 just after Runhappy won the GI Breeders' Cup Sprint. Prayer Book will have to get by Steadfast Stable's Listowel Lad (Sky Mesa), another firster who is out of a GI Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup S. winner in Bit of Whimsy (Distorted Humor). The mare has already thrown two black-type winners from four starters, including GSW & GISP Caroline Thomas (Giant's Causeway). Listowel Lad debuts for Barclay Tagg, who just lost stable star Tiz the Law (Constitution) to retirement. Flanagan Racing's Please the Pharoah (American Pharoah) gets another shot here after a no-impact debut Nov. 14. The $320,000 OBS March buy (:21 1/5) is a half to English champion Certify (Elusive Quality) and to additional Grade I winner Cry and Catch Me (Street Cry {Ire}).


10th-FG, $50K, Msw, 3yo, 6f, post time: 7:21 EDT
Some well-bred first-time starters, including a pair of Godolphin homebreds, make their debuts in this loaded Fair Grounds maiden. The first Godolphin runner is the Mike Stidham-trained and cleverly named GERSHWIN (Distorted Humor), who is out of the operation's five-time Grade I winner Music Note (A.P. Indy). The mare is a half to another musically named multiple winner at the top level in Musical Chimes (In Excess {Ire}) and produced the 2020 GII Jim Dandy S. winner and GI Jockey Club Gold Cup runner-up in Mystic Guide (Ghostzapper). The Brad Cox trainee Colonel Bowman (Curlin) is Godolphin's other entrant. The colt looks to become the sixth winner out of GI Ballerina S. winner Dubai Escapade (Awesome Again), who is a half to GISW Madcap Escapade (Hennessy), the dam of GISW Mi Sueno (Pulpit). Cox also sends Jerry Marks Stables LLC's $180,000 Keeneland September buy Donzi (Distorted Humor), whose dam is a full-sister to GI Oak Leaf S. victress Rigoletta (Concerto), who in turn produced GI Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile winner Battle of Midway (Smart Strike).

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