The North American spring racing season provides us with the opportunity to witness a number of promising debutantes take to the track for the very first time. Many of the top stables opt to unleash their two-year-olds once the warmer weather arrives, and although some of these young thoroughbreds tend to run a little green during the early stages, there are always a handful of newcomers who put in an extremely eye-catching performance. We take a look at three recent arrivals who have displayed the kind of promise which suggests that it won’t be long until they’re competing in Grade I events on a regular basis.
Daniel Pita’s Florida-bred filly made her debut at the beginning of May in a $65,000 maiden special weight at Gulfstream Park. The trainer doesn’t have many winners at the track, and following the disappointment of Blame the Storm in the opener, the two-year-old’s impressive performance proved to be just the tonic for the Venezuelan horseman. Under Luis Saez, she took up a spot on the rail, before drawing clear of the field and finishing four lengths ahead of Michael Yates’ Briella.
Having been sold as a yearling for just $30,000, the speedster appears to be a good value purchase for Manuel Pita. Despite being challenged around the turn, the two-year-old found more, and may be tested over further in the future. Prior to her debut, she has posted some impressive bullet drills, and fans are understandably excited to see her return to the track in the coming months.
Saez is currently operating at around 22% at Gulfstream Park, and proved to be the perfect partner for Princess Secret on this occasion. He scored a hat-trick on the night, and bettors who regularly check Paddy Power’s horse racing results across the world page will already be familiar with the Panamanian’s superb record at the Florida track. He also has a decent strike rate when teaming up with the Pita barn, and is likely to back aboard the Khozan filly when she returns to the track.
The juvenile season began in surprising fashion as the unfancied Quinoa Tifah upset the odds to come out on top at Gulfstream Park. Positioned in eight, the two-year broke well and kept tabs on the pacesetters before edging past the well-backed Lime. Wesley Ward’s odds-on shot was tiring towards the end of the four-and-a-half furlong dash, whereas the daughter of Gemologist appeared to have plenty left in the tank.
The filly is an impressive-looking thoroughbred, and her athletic build suggests that she has the potential to be a real threat over long trips in the future. Juan Alvarado’s charge has posted some impressive works, and although the original plan was to showcase her talents later in the season, Arindel Farm made a last-minute decision to send her to the track in mid-April instead. Their confidence paid off, and the $65,000 maiden winner certainly looks the type to follow up.
The constitution is one of the hottest sites around, and the former Florida Derby-winner has foaled a number of exciting two-year-olds over the last couple of seasons. Todd Pletcher’s Hyperfocus is one of the second crops and looks a truly outstanding prospect. The two-year-old pressed the pace throughout and despite showing some signs of inexperience around the turn, he still managed to outpace Breakthrough in the closing stages.
With his sire having chased home Triple Crown winner American Pharoah, there should be plenty more to come from this majestic performer.
As the season continues, there will be plenty more debutantes who are victorious at the first time of asking. However, there have already been a number of notable performers turned out in Florida and racing fans can expect to see plenty more of Princess Secret, Quinoa Tifah and Hyperfocus in 2020.