Saturday's notable 2-year-old maidens: 6th at Del Mar

Profile Picture: Kellie Reilly

July 25th, 2015

Del Mar's 6TH race, 6 furlongs (7:40 p.m. EDT)

The majority of this field is nominated to the Del Mar Futurity (G1).

Prime Attraction, a $335,000 Keeneland September yearling, boasts a fine pedigree: by Unbridled's Song, he is out of a full sister to Grade 3 victor Scipion and a three-quarter sister to unbeaten champion juvenile colt Vindication. Trainer Jim Cassidy isn't usually associated with first-out winners (hence the 20-1 morning line), but this one could be an exception, especially in view of his strong worktab (albeit at Galway Downs in Temecula). Cassidy and jockey Santiago Gonzalez (pictured together) have been a good tandem of late too.

Nuke Laloosh, third in his debut at Los Alamitos, adds blinkers this time for Peter Miller. Although by stamina influence Lemon Drop Kid, he's out of a multiple stakes-winning miler type in Leo's Gypsy Dancer. American League was a useful third to Turulu in his unveiling at Santa Anita, where he went off as the 2-1 favorite. The second-placer Dalmore didn't flatter the form when checking in fourth behind Sanford (G3) entrant Paynes Prairie at Belmont. Nevertheless, American League represents Mike McCarthy, who wins at a 43% clip with second-time starters and 33% with beaten favorites. The son of Old Fashioned has few interesting relations close up, but further in the family one finds the great Hoist the Flag. Exaggerator (not a Futurity nominee), a belated fifth in his Santa Anita debut, is a son of Curlin who's entitled to enjoy the extra furlong here. He is out of stakes-placed Woodbine track record-setter Dawn Raid, a Vindication half-sister to Canadian champion Embur's Song.

First-timer Miner's Light is a Warren Williamson homebred son of Mineshaft and Grade 3 heroine Tiz Elemental. Although second dam Blending Element has been a prolific producer, Tiz Elemental has yet to make a mark in her young broodmare career. Trainer Carla Gaines is quite familiar with this whole tribe, which tends to do better over time. I would have expected Miner's Light to do the same, so it's an encouraging sign that he's forward enough to start now. On Fire, a son of freshman sire Friesan Fire, is out of a half-sister to Grade 2-winning sprinter Ventana. Owned by Arnold Zetcher and trained by Simon Callaghan, he hails from the same connections as Firing Line.

Path of David is a full brother to Atigun, the third-placer finisher in the 2012 Belmont (G1) and Breeders' Cup Marathon (G2) who missed narrowly in the 2013 Louisville H. (G3) on turf. The Mike Stidham shipper was fourth to He's Comin in Hot first time out at Churchill (so his form will be tested in both Saturday's Sanford and by Silvertown's effort in the 5TH at the Spa).

Tiz a Billy is from the first crop of late-blooming Tizway, and also the first registered foal from Dancing Anna, a Grade 2-placed stakes winner at two who likely injects some precocity. Trainer Brian Koriner doesn't strike with firsters, but Tiz a Billy has been training up a storm. Dressed in Hermes (not a Futurity nominee) blitzed six furlongs in a bullet 1:10 4/5 at San Luis Rey ahead of this debut for Janet Armstrong. Being by Hat Trick, and from an immediate family redolent of turf, he might be best suited to that surface.

Photo of trainer Jim Cassidy and jockey Santiago Gonzalez courtesy of Benoit.