By Brian DiDonato
Hronis Racing, Siena Farm, Summer Wind Equine, West Point Thoroughbreds and Woodford Racing's Flightline (Tapit) turned in one of the more impressive debut performances in recent memory Saturday at Santa Anita to stamp himself as a no brainer 'TDN Rising Star'. Pounded down to 4-5 favoritism into the face of two Bob Baffert firsters, a $650,000 Simon Callaghan trainee and a MyRacehorse runner, the John Sadler pupil and $1-million Fasig-Tipton Saratoga grad broke perhaps a half-step slowly but quickly rushed up through horses to set a pressured pace from the rail. He began to widen his advantage after a :21.59 opening quarter, got the half in :44.42 while already some seven or eight lengths clear, and cantered to the wire from there to romp by a geared-down 13 1/4 lengths while stopping the clock in a sharp 1:08.75. Baffert runner Brutto (Nyquist) was best of the rest.
It was a productive day for seven-figure Saratoga graduates co-owned by West Point Thoroughbreds, Woodford Racing and Siena Farm. The overlapping connections also celebrated a debut win Saturday at Belmont with $1.5-million FTSAUG co-topper First Captain (Curlin). Flightline was the co-third-priciest purchase at that boutique auction.
Jane Lyon's Summer Wind purchased dam Feathered (Indian Charlie) for $2.35 million in foal to War Front at the 2016 Keeneland November sale. The 2015 GIII Edgewood S. winner, who was also a MGISP juvenile, is a granddaughter of MGISW Finder's Fee (Storm Cat). Her now 2-year-old Pioneerof the Nile colt sold for $100,000 at Fasig-Tipton October and was subsequently sent to Russia. Feathered has a yearling colt by Tapit named Failsafe and a foal colt by Curlin.
7th-Santa Anita, $62,000, Msw, 4-24, 3yo/up, 6f, 1:08.75, ft, 13 1/4 lengths.
FLIGHTLINE, c, 3, Tapit
1st Dam: Feathered (GSW & MGISP, $577,474), by Indian Charlie
2nd Dam: Receipt, by Dynaformer
3rd Dam: Finder's Fee, by Storm Cat
Sales history: $1,000,000 Ylg '19 FTSAUG. Lifetime Record: 1-1-0-0, $36,600. Click for the Equibase.com chart, the free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree or the VIDEO, sponsored by TVG.
O-Hronis Racing LLC, Siena Farm LLC, Summer Wind Equine, West Point Thoroughbreds & Woodford Racing LLC; B-Summer Wind Equine LLC (KY); T-John W. Sadler.