Zipse’s Kentucky Derby Daily – Day 69
When a horse wins a graded stakes race by more than seven lengths in only his second lifetime start, you tend to take notice, and it was hard to miss the grey lightning bolt that scorched the Gulfstream earth yesterday. The colt in question is named Flashpoint, and he looked like a big threat from the beginning before easily cruising by 3-5 favorite Travelin Man and rolling to an emphatic 7 ¼ length victory in the Grade 2 Hutcheson Stakes.
Yesterday’s win followed an easy debut victory last month in an Aqueduct maiden. While the maiden win was strong, Flashpoint took things to a whole new level in the Hutcheson. Ridden by Cornelio Velazquez, the Richard Dutrow trainee finished the seven furlongs in 1:22 on a track that was playing slower than it had most of the meet. Sent off as the near 7-1 third choice, Flashpoint stalked the favorite early in fractions of :22 and :44 2/5, before dispatching his foe coming out of the turn. From there he continued to pour it on all the way to the wire, leaving a promising field of sophomore colts in his rearview mirror.
A Beyer comparison between the two graded stakes yesterday at Gulfstream helps illustrate just how well Flashpoint ran yesterday. Soldat, in his relatively easy win in the Fountain of Youth, earned a 96 while Flashpoint received a 102 in the Hutcheson.
Bred in Florida, Flashpoint is by first crop sire and excellent sprinter Pomeroy and is out the Two Punch mare Two Punch Lil, herself a multiple stakes winner. What does the future hold for this flashy grey son of Pomeroy?
The way he won his first two starts certainly will generate deserved excitement. He gives every indication of a grade one type horse, but with his heavy sprint breeding it will be interesting to see if his connections contract Kentucky Derby fever. After the race, Dutrow, a lightning rod for controversy, mentioned that the nine furlong and million dollar Florida Derby is likely to be his next start. While it might be a good race to test Flashpoint around two-turns, I genuinely hope that it does not lead to a Kentucky Derby run. This horse is bred to excel in shorter races. If they want to point for something big, how about taking on older horses in the Met Mile? His chances would be much better than at 1 ¼ miles at Churchill Downs.
[Where does Flashpoint deserve to rank on the HRN Community 2011 Kentucky Derby Contenders?]