June 24, 2015
It’s been a blockbuster June for 3yos by CURLIN, who saw a pair of sophomore daughters win big-name races and son Keen Ice place third in the G1 Belmont S.
On the Belmont undercard, the exciting up-and-comer Curalina ran what was widely considered one of the best races of the day—behind a Triple Crown performance, of course—in the G1 Acorn S. Backed at 7-1 odds coming off maiden and allowance victories, the Eclipse Thoroughbreds-owned filly was shuffled back to last after a tangled start, and looked against it in a competitive 12-horse field. But she immediately began picking off rivals with a strong four-wide run on the backstretch and put herself in the mix by the turn. Improbably after her initial rally, Curlina put in a second powerful run at the top of the lane and, after a stretch-long battle, got up to win by a neck.
“She’s a filly we’d had high hopes for for a long time,” trainer Todd Pletcher said. “We felt like she was one of our best two-year-old fillies last year.”
Two weeks later, CURLIN’s 3yo daughter Stellar Wind—fourth as the favorite in the G1 Kentucky Oaks after a less-than-ideal trip—bounced back in the G2 Summertime Oaks at Santa Anita June 20. The prohibitive 2-5 choice raced wide throughout and gamely prevailed after a determined stretch drive. Another daughter of CURLIN, Conquest Curlgirl, ran third.
“Stellar Wind got the job done and she felt great,” said winning rider Victor Espinoza.
Earlier in the year, Stellar Wind solidified her status as one of the nation’s best 3yo fillies with a win in the G1 Santa Anita Oaks.
CURLIN’s son Keen Ice always gives a good account of himself, and the G1 Kentucky Derby seventh got a deserved Classic placing when he completed the trifecta in American Pharoah’s Belmont. Keen Ice also placed in the G2 Remsen S. and G2 Risen Star S.
On the Canadian Classic scene, meanwhile, the G2 Peter Pan S. and G3 Illinois Derby runner-up Conquest Curlinate just ran out of real estate when a fast-closing second in the $150,000 Plate Trial S. at Woodbine. The Mark Casse-trained colt will be among the favorites for the $1 million Queen’s Plate July 5.
With four graded winners and two Grade 1 winners on the Year, CURLIN is currently ranked #9 on General Sires List.