Horses to Watch August 11 – by Rod Young Turfdom
YANA (August 5): Four year old filly for Richard Baltas ran another one of her strong races
Wednesday, in a first level allowance condition at a flat mile on the main track. Off at 15/1 in a nine
horse field, she went right to the lead from the get go, set moderate fractions though being pressed most
of the way, found another gear at the top of the lane, then gave it up late to the 2/5 favorite. This Cal bred
has already won that allowance condition and she is knocking on the door with this one. She can go short
or long and has won on the turf and the dirt. That type of versatility gives Baltas lots of options to knock
out this condition.
MRAZEK (August 5): Two year old colt for Doug O’Neill drew the rail for the third consecutive sprint
on Wednesday in the $100k Graduation stakes for Cal breds. Off at 3/5 in a six horse field, he once again
took all the worst of it from the inside, yet he responded down the lane as he usually does, and pulled
away to a two length victory. This son of Square Eddie is as game as they come, and he now has 2 wins
and two seconds from 4 career starts, all being stuck down on the inside. O’Neill can run him back in the
I’m Smokin stakes on Sept. 4 against Cal Breds, where he will be odds on, or save him for closing day
against “open” company in the Grade 1 Del Mar Futurity. Either race he is the one to beat.
SHRINKING VIOLET (August 7): Five year old mare for Wesley Ward shipped West and got the
money once again in the 5 furlong Daisycutter stakes on the grass Friday. Off at 9/5 and the second
choice in the wagering, she broke well and settled in fifth about 4 lengths back of the leaders, made a
huge move turning for home on the outside, and cruised to a 5 length win that was very easily done. This
was her 8th victory in just 19 trips to the post and her third straight when shipping to the West Coast.
This is one for the “stable watch” as she will probably ship back to Keeneland and get ready for the
Breeders Cup but wherever she runs next, she will be tough.
YOUNG BRIAN (August 8): Two year old colt for Phil D’Amato lived up to the hype with a
scintillating debut in Saturday’s third, a six and half furlong sprint on the main. Opening at 1/5 off strong
drills, and staying there through much of the wagering, he went off at 6/5 and dismantled this group,
winning off by eight and a half lengths. He stumbled at the start from the one hole, rushed up to the
leaders by the half mile pole, then still had plenty left to draw off with a final quarter in 24.39. It was the
most impressive performance by any two year old this year, and he will probably be favored in the Del
Mar Futurity on closing day, and rightfully so.
CHIROPRACTOR (August 8) Three year old gelding for Tom Proctor, shipped West and made his
California debut on Saturday in a first allowance condition for 3 year olds at a mile on the turf. Off at 8/1
in a full field, he was void of any speed early and near the back of the pack into the clubhouse turn, a
good dozen lengths off the pace. They were going fast early and the speed came back to the stretch
runners by the top of the lane, and he exploded late to just miss by a half at the wire. He had been gelded
since his last start and he has the right style to do well on the grass in California. Proctor is as good as
they come with grass runners and he will find the winner’s circle shortly. Tab and follow.