Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Del Mar Futurity Racing Roundup

The final day of the Summer meet at Del Mar Racetrack will feature the Grade One $250,000 Del Mar Futurity Stakes for two-year-old Thoroughbreds with Creative Cause heading the field of eight colts entered in the race as the prohibitive 9-5 morning line favorite.

Trained by Mike Harrington, Creative Cause is undefeated in two starts and comes into the race with a 1¾-length victory in the Best Pal Stakes (G2) at Del Mar on August 7.

Prior to that effort, Creative Cause cruised to an easy 4¾-length win in his maiden debut at Hollywood Park on July 16 and earned a top 107 Brisnet Speed Figure for that performance.

I believe that Creative Cause is the deserving favorite and that he will like the stretch out to 7-furlongs.

Giant’s Causeway, the sire of Creative Cause, was undefeated in three starts as a two-year-old in Europe including a 2-length win in both the 7-furlong Futurity Stakes (Group 3) and the 7-furlong Prix de la Salamandre (Group 1).

Storm Cat, the grandsire of Creative Cause, is well known for siring precocious two-year-olds and he is the grandsire of Georgie Boy – winner of the 2007 Del Mar Futurity Stakes (G1). Storm Cat is also the damsire of 2006 Futurity winner Horse Greeley.

Dream Of Summer, the dam of Creative Cause, was a multiple graded stakes winner who was competitive in sprint and route races up to 8½-furlongs and earned over $1 million during her racing career.

Majestic City is the 5-2 morning line second choice and in three starts he also undefeated.

Trained by Peter Miller, Majestic City has earned all of his victories at Hollywood Park and he comes into the race with a 2¼-length win in the Hollywood Juvenile Championship Stakes (G3) on July 17. Prior to that, Majestic City won the Willard L. Proctor Memorial Stakes by 3½-lengths on June 12 and he earned a 104 speed figure in his maiden debut win on May 21.

City Zip, the sire of Majestic City, was a precious two-year-old winner of the Hopeful Stakes (G1), Saratoga Special Stakes (G2), Sanford Stakes (G2) and Tremont Stakes (G3) and he is well known for getting precocious two-year-olds.

City Zip is ranked 12th on the Thoroughbred Times Juvenile Sire
List with seven winners in 16 starters for a 44% strike rate.

Majestic City is a descendant of the
Mr. Prospector sire line and that line has produced five five Futurity winners since 1990: Lookin At Lucky (2009), Midshipman (2008), Horse Greeley (2006), Souvenir Copy (1997) and On Target (1994).

Hall of Fame Trainer Bob Baffert has won the Futurity a record nine times and he will send Drill (7-2) and Gun Boat (8-1) to the post. Of the two, I like Drill the most.

Drill is stepping up in class and comes into the race off a maiden win at Del Mar on August 13. The time of 1:16.56 for the 6½-furlongs was pretty decent and a sharp bullet work out on September 3 may indicate that Drill in ready for a career best.

Lawyer Ron, the sire of Drill, won three races in 10 starts as a two-year-old including a 10-length romp in an one mile, 70-yard allowance race at Louisiana Downs and an 8½-length romp in the one mile Diamond Joe Stakes at Evangeline Downs.

The dam and grand dam of Drill were not that productive on the racetrack, but the third dam Water Dance won the Twilight Tear Stakes and placed in the Long Look Handicap (G2), Beaugay Handicap, Hannah Dustin Handicap and Miss Liberty Handicap.

Luiana, the fourth dam of Drill, was a Reine-de-Course producer of seven winners including Prayers'N Promises, winner of the Matron Stakes (G1) and Spinaway Stakes (G1), as well as the Preakness Stakes (G1) and Belmont Stakes (G1) winner Little Current.

Banquet Bell, the fifth dam of Drill, was a Matriarch of the Turf and the dam Chateaugay, winner of the Kentucky Derby (G1) and Belmont Stakes (G1).

If Drill repeats the form of his last race, he should be competitive.

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