Juddmonte's Elite Power (Curlin) showed a new dimension and continued his ascension while punching his ticket to the GI Breeders' Cup Sprint in Saturday's 'Win and You're In' GII Vosburgh S. at Belmont at the Big A.
Heavily favored at 1-2 to win his fourth straight over just four rivals in this belated stakes debut, Elite Power broke on top and conceded the early lead to longshot Jalen Journey (With Distinction). He took a narrow advantage near the three-eighths marker, began to sneak away under confident handling in the stretch and was hand-ridden to a facile victory. It was 5 3/4 lengths back to Eastern Bay (E Dubai) in second.
Off the board in a pair of attempts at three, the chestnut has been perfect since kicking off the 2022 season with a third-place finish at Churchill May 7. A nine-length maiden winner beneath the Twin Spires June 5, he added two more victories in come-from-behind fashion, capturing a first-level allowance going a mile in Louisville June 30 and an optional claimer going six furlongs at Saratoga last time Sept. 3. He earned a co-career high 97 Beyer in the latter.
“He broke and he was closer than normal and that didn't seem to bother him,” winning trainer Bill Mott said. “He was fine where he was at. They went the first half in [:47.68], but you go to a race like the Breeders' Cup and they'll go :44. He's a good closer. If he gets a good, fast pace in front of him, he can close going six or seven [furlongs].”
Mott continued, “It gives you a lot of options that he can go from six [furlongs] to a mile throughout the course of the year. All things being equal, he'll probably race next year and have another race this year. I'll see what [Juddmonte general manager] Garrett O'Rourke wants to do. I'm sure he has some thoughts and ideas. It is nice to win a 'Win And You're In” and all your fees are paid.”
Elite Power, a $900,000 KEESEP graduate, becomes the 91st stakes/49th graded winner for leading sire Curlin. He is bred on the same Curlin/Vindication cross as GI Preakness S. winner Exaggerator. Elite Power's dam Broadway's Alibi, a MGSW & GI Kentucky Oaks runner-up and Robsham homebred, brought $2.15 million from Alpha Delta Stables while in foal to Smart Strike at the 2013 KEENOV sale. Elite Power's fourth dam is champion 2-year-old filly and GI Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies heroine Eliza (Mt. Livermore). This is also the family of GISW and young sire Dialed In (Mineshaft).
Saturday, Belmont at The Big A
VOSBURGH S.-GII, $242,500, Belmont The Big A, 10-8, 3yo/up, 7f, 1:23.98, ft.
1–ELITE POWER, 120, c, 4, by Curlin
1st Dam: Broadway's Alibi (MGSW & GISP, $521,500),
2nd Dam: Broadway Gold, by Seeking the Gold
3rd Dam: Miss Doolittle, by Storm Cat
1ST BLACK TYPE WIN, 1ST GRADED STAKES WIN. ($900,000
Ylg '19 KEESEP). O-Juddmonte; B-Alpha Delta Stables, LLC (KY);
T-William I. Mott; J-Jose Lezcano. $137,500. Lifetime Record:
7-4-0-1, $365,711. Werk Nick Rating: A+++ * Triple Plus*.
Click for eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree. Click for the
free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree.
2–Eastern Bay, 120, g, 8, E Dubai–Chrusciki, by Polish Numbers.
O-Norman Lynn & Lola Cash; B-Nancy Lee Farms (MD);
T-Norman L. Cash. $50,000.
3–Drafted, 122, g, 8, Field Commission–Keep the Profit, by Darn
That Alarm. ($19,000 RNA Ylg '15 OBSAUG; $35,000 2yo '16
OBSMAR; 40,000 3yo '17 DUBSEP). O-Dublin Fjord Stables LLC,
Racepoint Stables, Kevin Hilbert & Thomas O'Keefe; B-John
Foster, Barbara Hooker & Field Commission Partnership (FL);
T-David P. Duggan. $30,000.
Margins: 5 3/4, 5, HF. Odds: 0.50, 9.10, 5.60.
Also Ran: Southern District, Jalen Journey. Click for the Equibase.com chart, the TJCIS.com PPs. VIDEO, sponsored by TVG.