Saturday, August 28, 2010

Two more in the win column: Nos. 22 and 23

A debuting colt and a filly who finally broke through became maiden winners Nos. 22 and 23 for my sales tip Class of 2010.

Jitalian and Grand Giana, both purchased at May's Fasig-Tipton Midlantic Sale of 2-year-olds in Training, cleared their maiden hurdles in Friday action. The former stalked the pace and closed to score by three parts of a length in a maiden special weight at Finger Lakes. The latter, who ran both in maiden special weights and for a tag in three prior starts without hitting the board, wired the field by six lengths for a $10,000 claiming price at Charles Town.

Ridden by Omar Camejo, Jitalian (Defrere-Sandy Lass, by Line in the Sand) was trained for his maiden win by Karl Grusmark. The horse was bred in New York by Aaron Schroeder, and is owned by David Cramer. Jitalian, who earned $10,560 in his first start, was purchased for just $7,000 as Hip 314 at EASMAY.

Jitalian covered five and a half furlongs in 1:07.58.

My assessment of the horse tabbed him as a "Priority 1" in a list of 48 horses for a buyer seeking a bargain runner among the horses catalogued at EASMAY. He only worked 11.1, "but was by far one of the taller horses on the grounds, with a lot of filling out to do." Jitalian has a winning full sibling who earned more than $80,000, but two other full siblings include a 10-race maiden and one that broke down in its fourth start.

As I'm traveling (will be at Saratoga for the Travers in a few hours) I don't have the catalog page in front of me to give details of why I liked this one enough to label him a top priority, considering the "mixed" nature of his sibling quality and the relatively slow breeze. But, it could be suggested that he justified his Priority 1 status by winning first-out.

Grand Giana (Grand Reward-Giana, by Exclusive Era) earned $9,000 for her win, and has now banked $11,000 after being a $10,000 purchase at EASMAY, where I also labeled her a Priority 1 horse. She was bought at the sale by John E. Salzman Sr., and is trained by Tim Salzman. J.D. Acosta was her rider Friday, and she covered five furlongs in 54.16.

I valued Hip 157 highly not just because her sophomore sire already had 34 winners and her stakes-placed dam had produced seven winners from 10 to race. Nor because she has a pair of stakes-placed siblings, including a Group 3 horse on turf in the U.K. Rather I think she has a lot of up-side.

"She wasn't a tall girl," I wrote in detailing how I reached my selections for the buyer, "but she was only a week past her actual second birthday, and despite only 60 days in training managed a 10.4 breeze. I think John Salzman made out like a bandit ..."

Hard to justify the "bandit" comment just now, with Grand Giana winning for $10K, the price at which she was purchased. But I think she's potentially a better horse than that. With a sire who ran successfully on grass and some turf performance on the dam's side, I think this filly should get at least a couple of shots on the lawn somewhere, and perhaps on a synthetic track.

Meanwhile, you can follow along with the successes of my 187 sales picks at the end of this prior post.

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