Race of the Week 2017

HRN Original Blog:
Zipse At The Track

Big Week for Stars of Tomorrow

Looking for a new horse to start following on the 2012 Kentucky Derby Trail? Try these four recent maiden winning colts on for size…

Wednesday, November 9 - 8th race at Churchill Downs - Hierro (Hard Spun-Brief Bliss, by Navarone) A troubled fifth in a Saratoga maiden race won by Champagne runner-up Alpha, and then second by less than a length while running on the worst part of the track over a sloppy Belmont strip in his first two races, the good looking chestnut would make no mistake about his talent in his third start. Sweeping into the lead as the field hit the Churchill stretch, the Stonestreet owned and Steve Asmussen trained youngster drew clear as rider Julien Leparoux did only enough to stay on his back. Final time for Hierro in the 5 ¼ length score was 1:23.65 for the seven furlongs. A Kentucky bred son of hot first-crop sire Hard Spun, Hierro was purchased for $350,000 at the Ocala March two-year-olds in training sale.

Friday, November 11 – 8th race at Churchill Downs - Ever So Lucky (Indian Charlie-Bally Storm, by Summer Squall) I liked this one so much, I wrote about him yesterday. Bet down to odds of 4-5, the good looking bay colt broke a half-step slowly before pulling rider Julien Leparoux right to the lead. Laying down solid early fractions of :22.76 and :46.03 while facing brief pressure from three different runners, he began to lengthen his lead approaching the stretch. Wearing the familiar green and white silks of Augustin Stable, Ever So Lucky leveled off opened up a commanding four length advantage at the eighth pole. From there, the $600,000 juvenile buy was confidently ridden and under wraps as he hit the wire 3 ¼ lengths clear while running the 6 ½ panels in 1:17.42 for trainer Jonathan Sheppard.

Saturday, November 12 – 7th race at Aqueduct - Consortium (Bernardini-Marietta, by Machiavellian) Out of possibly the best young sire in America, this bay colt appears to be another Darley homebred with big talent. Sent off at 13-1 for his debut, he broke well, but fell back to fifth through fast early fractions. Moving smoothly, Consortium quickly menaced from the outside before taking over early in the stretch. From there, he easily coasted home, under only mild encouragement from rider Alan Garcia, to score by 4 ¾ lengths completing the 6 ½ furlongs in 1:17.10. Trained by Kiaran McLaughlin, Consortium is the first foal of Marietta, who won both the Iowa and Arlington Oaks back in 2007.
Sunday, November 13 – 4th race at Hollywood Park - Empire Way (Empire Maker-Delta Princess, by A.P. Indy) When you’re a regally bred full brother to the soon to be champion Royal Delta, there is not much secrecy on the occasion of your career debut. Despite that, Empire Way was sent off at 5-2, as he was not the only highly regarded first timer in this California maiden. Content to drop back early, the dark bay was still in last through a half mile in :46.61. Swung wide turning for home, he inhaled the field, including a game Holy Candy, to win by a measured half length. Making the initial outing all the more impressive was the way the Heinz Steinmann owned, and Mike Harrington trained youngster was ridden, as Joel Rosario never lifted his whip in route to the victory. The $250,000 February purchase covered 6 1/2 furlongs in 1:17.93.


[How high will these four climb on HRN's 2012 Kentucky Derby Contender's list?]


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Older Comments about Big Week for Stars of Tomorrow...

Impressive 2yo Winners here, but still haven't seen anybody better or impressive as Hansen yet. Next Please...
Loved Ever So Lucky and Empire Way. I think next year will be the year of the letter 'E,' as I mentioned in a blog I wrote. That could be overly sentimental, but there are some good 2-year olds whose names start with 'E' (Eblouissante and Exfactor being two of the other ones).
Pleased to see the recognition of Consortium. Was at Aqueduct on Saturday, and it would not surprise me at all if I saw next year's Derby winner.
Empire Way looked good, although I was concerned that he was wearing front bandages only.

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Meet Brian Zipse 

Brian has been a passionate fan of horse racing his entire life. Taken to the races at a very young age, he has been lucky enough to see all the greats in person from Secretariat, Forego, and Ruffian through Rachel Alexandra, Zenyatta, and American Pharoah. Before coming to the Nation, Brian displayed his love for the sport through the development of his horse racing website, which quickly became one of the most popular blogs in the game. 

The Editor of Horse Racing Nation from 2010-2017, Brian authored a daily column as Zipse at the Track, or ZATT for short, and added his editorial flare to the overall content of the website. Now a Senior Writer for HRN, Brian continues to contribute his thoughts on racing, as well as co-hosting the popular racing show, HorseCenter. A big supporter of thoroughbred aftercare, he serves as the President of The Exceller Fund.

Brian's work has also been published on several leading industry sites. He has consulted for leading contest site Derby Wars, is both a Hall of Fame and NTRA poll voter, and is a Vox Populi committee member. 

A horse owner and graduate of DePaul University, Brian lives just outside of Louisville with his wife Candice and daughter Kendra.


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