West Coast Stables' Tahoma (c, 2, Justify–Madera Dancer, by Rahy) became the first winner for his Triple Crown-winning sire with a two-length victory at Santa Anita Sunday. The chestnut colt, sent off the 4-5 favorite, tracked the pacesetters four wide through an opening quarter in :22.21. Still four wide, he rolled up to take a narrow advantage at the top of the lane, completed the half-mile in :47.01 and drew away inside the final sixteenth for a facile victory. Salta (Carpe Diem) was second and Eagles Landing (Competitive Edge) was third.
“We had high expectations and we feel this colt has a lot of upside,” said Leandro Mora, assistant to winning trainer Doug O'Neill. “We train these babies pretty much like Brian Mayberry used to when I worked for him 30 years ago. We do not over-train a horse for these type of races. This colt has a lot of ability and I feel really confident about his future.”
Tahoma, a $160,000 Keeneland September yearling purchase by bloodstock agent Dennis O'Neill, is a half-brother to graded stakes winner Legends of War (Scat Daddy).
“Dennis bought this horse and he has the eye of an eagle,” Mara said. “He provides us with so many nice horses. Doug is on his way back from Maryland, but he's on his phone and he knows we won.”
Doug O'Neill trained Legends of War to a win in the 2019 GIII Franklin-Simpson S. at Kentucky Downs.
Madera Dancer produced a colt by Nyquist this year.
2nd-Santa Anita, $68,902, Msw, 5-22, 2yo, 4 1/2f, :53.89, ft, 2 lengths.
TAHOMA (c, 2, Justify–Madera Dancer, by Rahy) $160,000 Ylg '21 KEESEP. Click for the Equibase.com chart or VIDEO, sponsored by TVG. Lifetime Record: 1-1-0-0, $40,200.
O-West Coast Stables, LLC; B-Hunter Valley Farm, Fergus Galvin & Golden Vale Farm (KY); T-Doug F. O'Neill. *1/2 to Legends of War (Scat Daddy), GSW-USA, GSP-Eng, $491,240.