<For HORSEMAN’S DIGEST #4>
Two-Year-Olds Loaded for Second Half
by Jojie Panlilio
Five months from now, all the arguments will be settled. We will know who the best two-year-old in the country is. He or she will have just won the Juvenile Championship run in December and would have shown good form going into the race.
Although the above statement is cut-and-dried, getting there is an entirely different matter. The first half of the 2007 season provided a lot of clues and few answers. Through the end of June, sprinters have ruled the two-year-old stakes races run so far. That is understandable since the races were run at the sprint distance of 900 and 1000 meters. Although to me sprint races could be an indicator of ability, I believe that there is still a deep talent pool of two-year-olds loading up for their campaigns in the last two quarters of the year.
Having said that, let’s take a look at the current two-year-olds that already showed talent and prowess to win early on.
He’s the Man: A very fast two-year-old by El Raggaas. Won the 2nd leg of the Juvenile Stakes. Would be interesting to see how he does once the distance goes beyond the sprint.
Tabako: Winner of the 1st lef of the Juvenile Stakes. Looks like the real deal if he remains healthy. By Mr. Sutter, he will definitely improve as he matures.
Security Queen: Her style of running indicates that she loves sprinting. Also has the conformation to indicate that this would suit her. A daughter of Minsk, she would probably be more suited to shorter distance races.
Acuris: Showed talent early on. Although a winner already at sprint distances, this son of Treasure Cay would improve as the distance gets longer. Look for this colt to be mixing it up with the big boys later in the year.
Santo Santito: Already a winner, this colt would only improve in time and as the distance gets longer. This is true for most sons and daughters of Conquistarose.
Black Mamba: A half-brother to Real Spicy, this is another colt that can only improve as he matures. His speed is influenced by his sire Principality. As with Real Spicy, distance and time will only make this colt better.
Copper Head: A daughter of Rum Tum Tiger, she showed ability in winning her sprint races early on. Runners by Rum Tum Tiger always interest me as they come from one of the most prolific lines in thoroughbred racing. Copper Head is only once removed from the great Storm Cat who at last count was standing for a stud fee of U$500,000 (P25 million). Will blood really tell in this one?
Treasure Hunter: A colt that has showed brilliant speed in his workouts and has also won at sprint distances. Interesting pedigree as he is by Treasure Cay from the dam Halo Landing. Definitely a Canlubang-influenced cross. But since he’s already a winner this early, I will be looking for this colt to join more stakes races later in the year.
These two-year-olds are just a few of the runners that have shown early talent and are loading up for the second half of the season. The next few weeks would be a very busy one for the Maiden Two-Year-Old Races as the bulk of the juvenile crop are still to make their maiden debut. Will we have another Juggernaut this year? Only the next few months will answer that question.
Personally, I think the best is yet to come in the two-year-old division. The talent pool is really deep with what I have seen at the track. I am looking forward to seeing more sons and daughters of Baseball Champ, Rum Tum Tiger, Lochrae, and Amerigo get to the races.
Truly and amazingly, we have come a long way in our breeding industry, and it will only get better! ***
Photo: Jojie Panlilio Photo: Jojie Panlilio is a noted horseowner and trainer. (10 June 2007, SLLP)