Prospect Watch: Asmussen has Saratoga newcomers to know

By Keeler Johnson, Special to HRN
July 18, 2019 11:31am

Each week during the Saratoga and Del Mar seasons, Keeler Johnson's Prospect Watch highlights well-bred, well-connected and pricy 2-year-olds of note in the entries at Saratoga and Del Mar.

Friday, July 19

Saratoga Race 5: Maiden Special Weight (6 furlongs)

#6 Finite

Bred by Winchell Thoroughbreds and conditioned by Steve Asmussen, Finite brings a classy pedigree to her debut. A daughter of Munnings, Finite’s dam is the two-time stakes winner Remit, who has already produced the successful Winchell/Asmussen runner Reride, winner of the 2018 Mine That Bird Derby. Finite sold for $200,000 as a 2-year-old in training, but Winchell Thoroughbreds retained a share, which is looking like a smart move because Finite has posted an eye-catching series of workouts leading up to this race. She’s bred to win early and should be ready to roll on Friday.

Saturday, July 20

Del Mar Race 7: Maiden Special Weight (5 furlongs)

#3 One Fast Bro

Owned by Ruis Racing and trained by Shelbe Ruis, this son of 2011 Haskell Invitational (G1) winner Coil is a half-brother to One Fast Broad (winner of two stakes races as a juvenile) and Awesome Return (who broke his maiden at two before winning three stakes events at age 3). On July 15, One Fast Bro turned in a solid workout from the Del Mar starting gate, traveling a half mile in :48 1/5, the second-fastest time of the morning. With his solid pedigree and appealing work tab, One Fast Bro could be ready to strike on Saturday.

Saratoga Race 6: Maiden Special Weight (5 ½ furlongs on turf)

#2 Sharing

As a daughter of 2010 Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf winner Shared Account, Sharing is the type of filly who figures to thrive once she stretches out in distance. Then again, if she’s inherited any speed from her sire Speightstown — a champion sprinter and winner of the 2004 Breeders’ Cup Sprint — maybe Sharing will turn out to be versatile when it comes to distance preferences. Purchased for $350,000 as a yearling, Sharing is trained by Graham Motion, who conditioned Animal Kingdom to win the 2011 Kentucky Derby.

Saratoga Race 7: Maiden Special Weight (6 furlongs)

#5 American Butterfly

American Butterfly is a regally bred son of American Pharoah out of the War Front mare Gracie’s Butterfly, making him an exciting prospect from a pedigree perspective. At the OBS April sale of 2-year-olds in training, American Butterfly fell short of his reserve when bidding stalled at $390,000 — a hefty price, actually — and has since made his way to the barn of Hall of Fame trainer D. Wayne Lukas.

Lukas rarely wins with first-time starters, so American Butterfly might not bring his A-game on Saturday. But he’s posted a few solid workouts in preparation for his debut, and American Pharoah’s first foals have been hot this year. At the very least, American Butterfly could be one to watch down the road.

#6 Basin

Basin ran too good to lose in his debut at Churchill Downs last month, gaining three lengths in the final furlong to fall a nose short of catching the victorious By Your Side. The form of this effort received a significant boost when By Your Side came back to impressively win the Sanford Stakes (G3) on opening day at Saratoga.

Another from the Asmussen barn, Basin is a well-bred son of Liam’s Map out of the Johannesburg mare Appenzell, making him a half-brother to Rise Up, who won three stakes races (including the Grade 3 Delta Downs Jackpot Stakes) as a juvenile in 2013. Saturday’s maiden special weight is packed with promising colts, including a few well-bred first-time starters, but it’s going to take a big effort for anyone to upset Basin.


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