VERRAZANO SOLD AS RACING/STALLION PROSPECT
With the deal for Verrazano to continue the next phase of his career for new connections complete, it’s a good time to reflect on a career that saw the Let’s Go color-bearer establish himself as the most spectacular three-year-old of his crop.
A $250,000 yearling, Verrazano owns a pedigree that had auspicious connections to previous Let’s Go stars, as he is by More Than Ready, who sired Let’s Go’s classic and Breeders’ Cup placed Ready’s Echo, out of Enchanted Rock, the dam of El Padrino.
Making his debut on January 1, Verrazano, immediately stamped himself as a horse to watch, taking a Gulfstream Park maiden over 6½ furlongs by 7¾ lengths in 1:16.2, after speeding through three-quarters in 1:09.4. Returning in a one mile allowance, Verrazano tallied by a remarkable 16¼ lengths running a 105 Beyer Speed figure.
Making his stakes debut in the Tampa Bay Derby (gr. II), Verrazano took command after a half-mile and dominated thereafter, recording a facile three lengths victory over a field that included grade one winner Java’s War, graded winners Honorable Dillon and Falling Sky, stakes winners Dynamic Sky and Purple Egg.
The Wood Memorial Stakes (gr. I) saw Verrazano tackle another formidable undefeated runner in Vyjack, winner of three straight stakes, including the Jerome Stakes (gr. III) and Gotham Stakes (gr. II). Taking command after the six furlong mark, Verrazano repelled Vyjack’s challenge, then held the late-closing Normandy Invasion at bay without ever being fully extended. The performance catapulted Verrazano to a position among them contender for Kentucky Derby (gr. I) favoritism. The bay duly made the trip to the twin towers, but a combination of the wet-track and near-suicidal fractions ended hopes of classic glory.
Six weeks later, Verrazano returned in the Pegasus Stakes (gr. II), leading throughout to deliver a 9¼ length drubbing to a field that included the Preakness Stakes (gr. I) second, Itsmyluckday. That effort, however, was merely a prologue to what turned out of be one of the performances of 2013. In the $1,000,000 Haskell Invitational Stakes, Verrazano tracked the early pace of the Preakness Stakes (gr. I) hero Oxbow, before putting that classic winning rival away just before the turn for home. Three lengths clear at the head of the stretch, and despite running on an extraordinary deep and tiring, Verrazano actually accelerated through the last furlong before crossing the line 9¾ lengths clear of the runner-up, the grade one winning Power Broker. In addition to Oxbow and Power Broker, Verrazano’s defeated opponents included the Kentucky Derby (gr. I) second Golden Soul. The visual impression created by Verrazano’s remarkable effort in the Haskell was confirmed by speedfigure of 116 awarded by the Beyer Organization.
There is no doubt that Verrazano was feeling the effects of his exertions when he failed to fire in the Travers Stakes (gr. I), but despite that factor, and the fact that an extremely demanding season saw him make ten starts in 11 months, Verrazano still saw out the year with highly-creditable efforts against older horses with a fourth in the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile (gr. I) – after a very rough trip – and Cigar Mile Handicap (gr. I).
In his ten starts representing Let’s Go, Verrazano won six times, capturing four graded stakes and two grade one contests. At season’s end, his Beyer Speed figure remained as the fastest by any three-year-old in 2013, and the fastest by a horse of that age since Uncle Mo.
||Coral Eclipse S. (G1)
||Queen Anne S. (G1)
||Lockinge S. (G1)
||Cigar Mile H. (G1)
|| Santa Anita
||Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile (G1)
||Travers S. (G1)
||Haskell Invitational S. (G1)
||Pegasus S. (G3)
Verrazano Wins at Gulfstream Park
3-year-old colt Verrazano draws off in the stretch to win maiden special weight race by 7 3/4 lengths at Gulfstream Park on January 1st.
Verrazano Romps in the Haskell (G1)
Verrazano and jockey John Velazquez win the Haskell Invitational S. (G1) by a record 9 3/4 lengths at Monmouth Park
Verrazano Wins at Gulfstream Park
3-year-old colt Verrazano wins allowance race by daylight at Gulfstream Park on February 2nd.
Verrazano Wins Wood Memorial S. (G1)
As the post time 4-5 favorite, Verrazano captured the Wood Memorial S. (G1) by three quarters of a length at Aqueduct on Saturday, April 6th to remain undefeated and atop the 3-year-old national rankings.
Verrazano Wins Pegasus S. (G3)
Verrazano rolled home an easy 9 1/4 length winner in the Pegasus S. (G3) at Monmouth Park.
Verrazano Wins Tampa Bay Derby (G2)
3-year-old colt Verrazano (More Than Ready) remains unbeaten winning the Tampa Bay Derby (G2)