The results of two Grade 1 races on Monday proved that owner Reddam Racing and trainer Doug O'Neill have two talented 2-year-olds in their barn this year.
Just a few hours after the pair sent Ralis out to victory in the Hopeful Stakes at Saratoga, their colt Nyquist pulled away impressively to win the $300,000 Del Mar Futurity Monday on closing day at Del Mar.
Tracking the early pace with Mario Guttierez in the irons, Nyquist took the lead on the far turn and drew away confidently, crossing the wire well in front to remain unbeaten in three career starts.
Swipe closed for second, and Blameitonthelaw finished third. Final time was 1:23.28 for seven furlongs.
Nyquist, named for Gustav Nyquist, a native of Sweden who plays right wing for the Detroit Red Wings of the National Hockey League, was bred in Kentucky by Summerhill Farm. He is by Uncle Mo out of Seeking Gabrielle (Forestry). Nyquist went through the auction ring three times, ultimately selling for $400,000 to agent Dennis O'Neill at the Fasig-Tipton Florida March sale of 2-year-olds in training, with Niall Brennan, agent, the consignor.
Post-Race Quotes From Del Mar Media Office:
MARIO GUTIERREZ (Nyquist, winner) – “Any other track in the country – if I run a :44 half like that – I'm well in front. But here they were all coming at me. I used him early, but then I didn't have to use him at all. He just coasted home. He's a nice colt, really nice. Can I compare him to I'll Have Another (on whom he won the Kentucky Derby and Preakness in 2012)? No, not really, different horses. Remember, I rode 'Another' as a 3-year-old. This one is only a 2-year-old.”
KENT DESORMEAUX (Swipe, second) – “The winner was just too good. My horse is still learning. He's getting there. But compliments to the winners on an impressive performance.”
TYLER BAZE (Blameitonthelaw, third) – “Good race for him. He needs some seasoning. He'll be a good one.”
DOUG O'NEILL (Nyquist, winner) – “I thought we had the perfect trip and Mario (Gutierrez) did a great job. This is a super horse and, like any great athlete, it's a matter of staying healthy and if he stays that way he'll do some big things.”
FRACTIONS: :22.41 :44.54 1:09.80 1:23.28
The stake win was the fifth of the meet for rider Gutierrez, but his first in the Futurity. He now has 10 stakes wins at Del Mar.
The stakes win was the fifth of the meet for trainer O'Neill and his second (Stevie Wonderboy, 2005) in the Futurity. He now has 31 stakes wins at Del Mar.
The winner is owned by Reddam Racing, the nom de course of J. Paul Reddam of Laguna Beach, Calif.
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