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Big Apple Babies

Big Apple Babies is a series that takes a glance at the pedigrees and sales histories of select 2-year-olds who are making their debuts in maiden special weight races at Aqueduct Racetrack, Belmont Park, or Saratoga Race Course. Many of history’s best horses have commenced their careers in New York, and Big Apple Babies will help fans find the stars of tomorrow as they head postward for the first time.


Race 3, 2-year-old Fillies, 5 ½ furlongs, 2:04 p.m.

Jon Forbes


Forbes’ Firsters for Friday, July 19, 2013


Race 3, 2-year-old Fillies, 5 ½ furlongs, 2:04 p.m.

CRYSTALROCKET (dark bay or brown filly, A. P. Warrior—Queen of Millbrook, by Distinctive Pro) is out of a mare who a pair of stakes for New York-bred fillies: the Lady Finger for 2-year-olds and the New York Oaks for 3-year-olds. Four of Queen of Milbrook’s five foals to race have won, including nine-time winning sprinter Reine Des Coeurs.

Owner: Leonard C. Green, Sean Shay, Henry E. Baker & Peter K. Baker

Trainer: Gary Contessa

Jockey: Irad Ortiz, Jr.

Sales history: $3,200 Keeneland January yearling; $57,000 OBS April 2-year-old (one furlong in 10 1/5 seconds, video)


STOPCHARGINGMARIA (dark bay or brown filly, Tale of the Cat—Exotic Bloom, by Montbrook) is the first foal out of her dam, a router who won the listed Windward Stakes at Presque Isle and the My Charmer Stakes at Turfway Park and was third in the Grade 3 Seaway at Woodbine, all over synthetic surfaces. A half-brother to Exotic Bloom, See Tobe, was a listed stakes winner and Grade 3 placed on the turf.

Owner: Repole Stable

Trainer: Todd Pletcher

Jockey: John Velazquez

Sales history: $47,000 Keeneland September yearling; $220,000 OBS March 2-year-old (one furlong in 10 1/5 seconds, video)


IRELAND (bay filly, Afleet Alex—Classy Mirage, by Storm Bird) is a full-sister to Grade 1 Hopeful winner Dublin, who later added placings in the Grade 1 Arkansas Derby, Grade 2 Rebel, and Grade 3 Southwest. Their dam won five graded stakes, including the Grade 1 Ballerina Handicap. Classy Mirage, a half-sister to dual Grade 1 winner Missy’s Mirage, has produced nine winners from 12 foals to race.

Owner: Calumet Farm

Trainer: D. Wayne Lukas

Jockey: Luis Saez

Sales history: $115,000 Keeneland September yearling


ART OF THE GAME (chestnut filly, Elusive Quality—Jade Queen, by Giant’s Causeway) is the second foal to race out of her dam, a turf runner who finished third in both the Grade 1 Garden City and Grade 1 Flower Bowl Invitational. Art of the Game’s second dam, Jade Flush, won the Grade 2 Rare Perfume on the turf and placed in six graded stakes on the dirt (including the Grade 1 Spinster) and also produced turf horse Megantic, a stakes winner and who was graded stakes placed.

Owner: Richard C. Pell

Trainer: Nicholas Zito

Jockey: Joel Rosario

Sales history: $190,000 Keeneland September yearling