Second Chances: Nautilus

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In this continuing series, TDN’s Senior Editor Steve Sherack catches up with the connections of promising maidens to keep on your radar.

Nautilus (c, 2, by Cairo Prince–Pantanal, by Congrats) has every right to move forward with a race under his belt following a better-than-it-looked fourth on debut behind a blowout ‘TDN Rising Star’ performance from Cazadero (Street Sense) at Churchill Downs May 29.

Drawn on the fence in that five-furlong affair, the $130,000 OBS March breezer (:10) was quickly outsprinted while under a ride and raced in tight quarters heading into the far turn. With his work cut out for him as they turned for home, he ran on nicely with late interest once steered into the clear on the outside by John Velazquez to finish a length behind the third-place finisher.

Cazadero, a dominating 8 3/4-length winner, earned a very strong 81 Beyer Speed Figure. Nautilus received a 50.

Trained by Brad Cox, Nautilus is campaigned in partnership by Kent Spellman and Sol Kumin’s Madaket Stables, LLC.

“We knew he wanted longer, but thought he would get a lot of out of the race,” Kumin said. “It was a tough post for a 2-year-old with not a lot of speed and I thought he got a good education. We’ll run him back June 27 at Churchill Downs going longer and he should be tough. Brad Cox likes him.”

The gray is named after The Nautilus, a restaurant located in Nantucket, Massachusetts. Kumin is also an investor in the eatery.

“The owners of the restaurant all watched the race and are excited about the horse,” Kumin added.

Nautilus, bred in Kentucky by Haymarket Farm LLC, RNA’d for $50,000 as a KEENOV weanling. He brought $75,000 from King’s Equine as a KEESEP yearling and $130,000 from BSW Bloodstock at OBSMAR.

Nautilus is a half-brother to last year’s GI Woody Stephens S. third-place finisher Borracho (Uncle Mo) and the promising $425,000 OBSMAR graduate and unlucky 3-year-old maiden of two starts Union Maiden (Union Rags), who was featured in this same column Feb. 27.

Previous standouts featured in ‘Second Chances’ include: MGISW and ‘TDN Rising Star’ Paradise Woods (Union Rags), GSW Backyard Heaven (Tizway), MSW and ‘TDN Rising Star’ Gidu (Ire) (Frankel {GB}), the highly regarded GII San Felipe S. runner-up Honor A. P. (Honor Code) and GII Fasig-Tipton Fountain of Youth S. runner-up Candy Tycoon (Twirling Candy).

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