The Kentucky Juvenile Stakes attracted and assortment of nine colts, fillies and geldings.  The precocious two-year-olds will travel five furlongs over the Churchill Downs dirt course. All except one of the entrants have raced.  There’s some quality in the field and we may see some of these babies competing in other stakes races this summer and fall.



Just how fast was the Keeneland dirt on April 21?  Hey Mike set a new track record for 4 ½ furlongs in :51.36 in the opener. Two races later, Lady Aurelia lowered the record to :50.85.


LadyAThe slight favorite at 8-5 morning odds is Lady Aurelia (Scat Daddy – D’ Wildcat Speed, by Forest Wildcat).  Galloped clear of the field by 7 ½ lengths in her debut.  The filly’s dam D’ Wildcat Speed was Champion Imported Three-Year-Old Filly in Puerto Rico and showed her class by winning the Rampart (G2) at 1 1/8 miles.  Lady Aurelia owns the highest early and late pace speed figures in the field. What will she do for an encore?




Hey Mike (Cape Blanco (IRE) – Nina Fever, by Borrego) was slightly out-shown by the filly. However, he tracked the pace before getting up to win by a half-length.  The colt is a half-brother to last year’s Frizette (G1) heroine Nickname, who is entered in the Eight Belles Stakes (G2) on the Kentucky Oaks undercard.



When you think of early season juveniles, who is the first trainer that comes to mind?  Wesley Ward, of course.  The baby specialist has a 51%-win rate with two-year-olds. He entered a trio of fillies in the race, including Lady Aurelia. They have a good shot of completing a Ward sweep of the Kentucky Juvenile Stakes.


The Ward-trained Silvertoni (Tapit – Somasach, by Johannesburg) captured her Keeneland debut by two lengths. Precocity and class runs in the pretty gray filly’s female family.  Her dam was Group 3 placed in Ireland as a two-year-old. Her second dam Easy Now captured the Astarita Stakes (G2) at two and was a multiple Grade One winner at three. Oh, and she’s a half-sister to the legendary Easy Goer, who was a Two-Year-Old Champ. Expect to see Silvertoni develop into a very nice two and three-year-old.


Ward’s third entrant is Con Te Partiro (Scat Daddy – Temple Street, by Street Cry (IRE)) naturally won her debut at Keeneland too, getting 4 ½ furlongs in :52 flat, defeating her rivals by 5 ½ lengths. Her older half-brother Donworth is a stakes winner at 1 1/16 miles. Their dam placed in the Humana Distaff (G1). Con Te Partiro has solid Claiborne Farm bloodlines. She has 5×5 Rasmussen Factor breeding (inbred to a blue hen within five generations) to Narrate, the third dam of Johannesburg (Scat Daddy’s daddy) and she’s also the second dam of Pulpit (the third damsire of Con Te Partiro).  The filly has the pedigree to love stretching out.


The first starter for Freshman Sire Stay Thirsty is making his debut in the Kentucky Juvenile Stakes. Thirstforlife (Stay Thirsty – Promenade Girl, by Carson City), The colt is a three-quarter brother to Cavorting (Bernardini), the multiple stakes winner who captured the Adirondack Stakes as a two-year-old, and the Test (G1) at three.  Their dam was also a precocious runner, winning her debut and multiple stakes. Thirstforlife draws the tricky post 1.


Cold Snack Thirty (Backtalk – Passeporta, by Rockport Harbor) ships in from Gulfstream Park, where he captured his 4 ½ furlong debut in a dueling :52.  He has little blacktype in his distaff line, but he earned nice speed figures and could surprise at a price. Cold Snack Thirty goes out for the first time for trainer Tevis McCauley. The conditioner’s 0-19 record in listed races isn’t that great, but when McCauley wins that first one, it should pay.


Bluegrass Gem (Gemologist – Song of the Saints, by Saint Ballado) was his Freshmen Sire’s first starter. The colt made a four-wide move to get up for second place in a 4 ½ furlong maiden race at Keeneland. He’s bred to go longer, so it was a good effort.  His dam is stakes-placed and Bluegrass Gem’s second dam Prospector’s Song is a veteran stakes winner and juvenile stakes-placed.  The colt will be competitive with more distance and he could hit the board.


Cold Hearted Pearl (Parading – Sessile, by Forestry) was wide in her debut and finished a fading fourth, beaten by over seven lengths just last week.  She receives first time Lasix. The Helmbrecht barn is 12% with first time Lasix and their second-time starters win at 12%.  This is a tough place for her second start.


Rapa Iti (Discreet Cat – Extra Mousse, by Posse) was squeezed at the start of his debut, but rushed up to grab the lead briefly.  From there, he retreated to finish last, beaten 18 lengths.  He owns the lowest late pace speed figure in the field.



Lady Aurelia looks like the class and speed here. Hey Mike can track the speed and take over if the filly falters. The Ward stablemates Silvertoni and Con Te Partiro also figure.  Thirstforlife goes out for Mark Casse off of a bullet breeze.


#4  LADY AURELIA (8-5)

#9  HEY MIKE (5-2)

#3  CON TE PARTIRO (8-1)