2YO Maiden Special Weight ‘Picks, Plays and Pontification’ – Keeneland, 04/27/2023

April 26, 2023

Keeneland, Race 2 – Wednesday, April 27, 2023

By 2YO EdgeMan

KEE1:042723 – 5 1/2f on the Lawn.  ‘Only’ ten entrants for this first turf race of the meet for Open 2YO maidens.  Luis Mendez sends out the only filly to face the boys and Mr. Ward has two entered.  First-Crop Sire (1CS) – Vino Rosso – has his first runner to try the lawn.  This will be fun, so let’s take a look….

#2 – Early Munny (12/1) – This Munning’s colt makes the second start of his young career after running a very dull 8th place in the first race at Keeneland this meet.  He sold for $60,000 as a short yearling last year, which was higher than only 13 of the 91 Munning’s yearlings that sold in 2022 as a yearling.  But again, remember he sold in January vs the summer.  His dam was 5/37 in her racing years, earning north of $150,000.  He has one ½ sibling that was 8 for 31 and brought home $224,000 and another ½ that won as a 2YO FTS at Finger Lakes.  John A. Hancock has given him one work since his afternoon effort on 4/7/23, a pretty average 4f move last Saturday from the gate here at KEE – 49.6 seconds (17/30).  Gerardo Corrales gets the return riding engagement.

#7 – Calhoun (6/1) – Conditioner Phil Antonacci sends out his first runner in a KEE spring 2YO event going back at least five years in the form of this Uncle Mo colt who didn’t sell for as much as most other yearlings from his sire did last year – $115K (76/95).  Mom won twice on the track in 14 tries and banked $121K.  She threw a 3YO ½ bro to Calhoun who is 1 for 2 on the racetrack with $42,000 of earnings, winning last month at GP in his second try while scoring an 85 EBSF.  TrueNicks likes the mating that produced this colt giving it an ‘A’ rating.  This guy has had six workouts down at Payson Park and all have been at 3f.  His next to last – on 4/8/23 – earned a bullet, traveling in 36 seconds flat (1/8).  Terrific young jockey – Tyler Gaffalione – gets tapped to be the saddle man.

#8 – Candymaker (8/5) – The first of two Ward entries is by Twirling Candy, as you may have guessed from the name.  Ed and Susie Orr committed to this guy at that last Keeneland September yearling sale for $175,000 (22nd most for his sire’s 82 yearlings that sold at public auction last year).  His dam by Giant’s Causeway could only manage one victory in five attempts with earnings of $27,000.  This colt has one sibling, a half brother who is three years old, but he’s unraced.  This guy also gets a TrueNicks rating of ‘A’ and has been strong in the morning having had six total workouts, all at 3f – his first three were on the synthetic at Turfway Park and his most recent three were here at Keeneland.  He boasts three bullets – his first drill at TP and his last two at KEE which were blazed in 35 flat (1/18) on 4/11/23 and 34.8 (1/17) six days later.  ‘The Maestro’ goes back to his main juvenile reinsman this meet – Joel Rosario.

#9 – Laugh Now (30/1) – This dude is by Spendthrift Farm’s 1CS Vino Rosso who makes his debut for trainer John Ennis.  He hammered down for $20,000 as a yearling – 110th most of the massive 128 of his sire’s yearlings that sold in 2022.  His Tiznow dam only won once in four races earning a meager $13,000.  He has one half-brother who is unraced.  Ennis has breezed him four times, the first at 3f and the last three at four panels.  His most recent move was quite good – 48.8 seconds – 2nd fastest of 22 four furlong works on 4/18/23 at KEE.  Tyler Heard will saddle up.

#10 – Fandom (5/2) – The other Wesley Ward colt was bred in Great Britain and will break from the outside gate for the ownership of Stonestreet Stables, LLC.  This guy sold at Goffs as a yearling and the winning bid converted to nearly $196,000 (six highest from 79 Showcasing yearling’s sold last year).  His mom never raced and he also has a half bro that has not competed.  WW has pumped seven morning drills into him, with the last four going over the KEE dirt.  His most recent was less than a week ago – on 4/22/23 – which was finished in 36 flat (1/8); and three back – on 4/9/23 – he blazed the 3f in 35.6 (1/18).  A pretty decent jockey that you may be familiar with (pun intended) – Irad Ortiz, Jr. – will get the leg up.

Pick – #9 Laugh Now – We are sticking to our guns and not picking a Ward runner (that would just be no fun at all – and to quote the ‘Pick 6 King’ – Jon Stettin – ‘Cash fewer tickets, but win more money’).  Gotta be transparent – this one may be a bit of a sentimental pick, but I do think Ennis is likely to nail one of these this meet and there is only one more race tomorrow.  I also like Laugh Now’s most recent breeze and it still left him nine days to recharge the batteries before today’s race.  30/1 M/L? – yes sir, I’ll take a little slice of that, please.

Can’t believe that we are down to our last event at this Spring Meet here at Keeneland tomorrow – it does go as fast as the horses run.  That one will also be contested over the grass, but the gals will take center stage.  Come back to this website soon for our world famous ‘Picks, Plays and Pontification’ for that affair and also don’t forget our post-race pieces – ‘Sum Up and Learnings’.  Don’t be shy – identify as an Edgie – you know that you are one of us.  Thank you for everyone for all of your support!

@jonathanstettin is that your money that has Alpha Team into 11/10 Jon?! 9/2 in . spot intl just disappeared, still holding 3/1.

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