Tapit Trice scores allowance win by eight lengths. (Coglianese Photo)
“The further he goes, the better he’ll get.” Three-year-old Pletcher trainee is stakes-bound after impressive win. Derby prep a possibility.
David Joseph/Gulfstream Park
HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. – Whisper Hill Farm LLC’s Tapit Trice stamped himself as a 3-year-old to watch Saturday at Gulfstream Park, where the son off Tapit scored an impressive eight-length victory in a mile optional claiming allowance on the undercard of the $250,000 Holy Bull (G3).
“He’s a colt we’ve had high hopes for all along,” Hall of Fame trainer Todd Pletcher said. “He improved from his first to second start and improved again today. The exciting thing about him is the further he goes, the better he’ll get.”
Tapit Trice broke somewhat slowly from his No. 1 post position before being angled to the outside by jockey Luis Saez. The long-striding gray colt raced mid-pack while four-wide along the backstretch before being asked for some run leaving the backstretch. Tapit Trice responded with a sustained run to overtake stablemate Shesterkin, the 4-5 favorite ridden by Irad Ortiz, in mid-stretch and drew off to score comfortably.
Tapit Trice ran a mile in 1:36.44 while looking very much like a colt with a big future.
“Everything’s in play. It’ll be a stake [next]. We’ll huddle up and talk it over,” Pletcher said.
Tapit Trice debuted with a third-place finish in a mile maiden special weight race at Aqueduct Nov. 6 before graduating there at a mile over slop Dec. 17.
Tapit Trice was bought at the 2021 Keeneland September sale for $1.3 million.
Pletcher-trained Shesterkin finished second, four lengths ahead of Live is Life. Pletcher also finished one-two in the $175,000 Sweetest Chant with Cairo Consort and Alpha Bella.
Editor’s Note: Tapit Trice definitely outclassed that field. Pletcher has some plans for this colt because he’s had five four-furlong breezes and a race this year! Tapit Trice won twice at a mile on dirt. Does Pletcher stretch him to 1-1/16 miles in the Fountain of Youth on March 4th or the Tampa Bay Derby March 11th and go for big Derby points? “The further he goes, the better he’ll get,” says Todd Pletcher. We may have a sleeper awaiting the Kentucky Derby Leaderboard.