No future plans have been confirmed for recent maiden winners Lake Avenue and Hemlock, who both graduated over the main track at Aqueduct for Godolphin and Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott.
On Thursday afternoon, the well-bred juvenile filly Lake Avenue bested a short field of four, gliding home over a fast main track by 12 ¾ lengths under jockey Junior Alvarado.
A chestnut daughter of Tapit out of dual Grade 1 winner Seventh Street, Lake Avenue was second in her first effort, where she was run down by Power Move, who ran second next out in the Tempted.
“She was highly regarded from day one. Physically, she looks great. She comes from a very nice family,” said Jimmy Bell, the President of Godolphin’s USA division. “Bill has been patient with her all along. She got run down by a very nice horse of [Hall of Fame trainer] Shug [McGaughey’s] first out. This time she controlled the race from the get-go. She still has some hurdles to cross but so far she’s done nothing wrong. No immediate plans with her, we’ll just see how she comes out of it. We’re not in any hurry.”
Godolphin, Mott and Alvarado teamed up once more on Saturday afternoon when Hemlock graduated at fourth asking when shortening up to six furlongs at Aqueduct, defeating a field of eight colts and geldings by three-quarters of a length.
The Into Mischief bay was favored in his career debut in an off-the-turf maiden event at Saratoga which was won by eventual Skidmore winner Another Miracle. Bell said the cut back in distance was to his liking after finishing a distant fifth at Belmont Park on October 2.
“Hemlock’s first effort was a good one. When we stretched him out to seven eighths, I’m not sure if it was the distance or the track, possibly a little of both, but he spun his wheels a bit,” Bell said. “Cutting back to three-quarters was a good spot and it gave him some more experience under his belt.”
Godolphin and Mott have been met with collaborative success with young horses this season. At the end of October, Mott saddled Godolphin’s Antionette to a second-out win at Belmont Park. The daughter of Hard Spun breezed over the Belmont training track on Sunday morning completing a half-mile journey in 50.12 seconds according to Equibase.
“He trained Elusive Quality who sported Darley’s maroon and white silks,” Bell said of Mott. “He’s always had a great rapport with Sheikh Mohammed and we’re beginning to spread out horses here, there and yonder. Three of the 2-year-olds we gave to Mott have ran and they’ve all been winners so we’re very pleased.”