Colonel John at attention in Real Quiet Stakes
Susan Casner's Colonel John easily passed his first stakes test and his first race around two turns in the Real Quiet Stakes at Hollywood Park on Sunday with jockey Corey Nakatani in the irons. The two-year-old bay broke from the rail as the 7-10 favorite and was taken back off a moderate pace in the mile-and-one-sixteenth event. He split horses at the top of the stretch and took the lead in mid-stretch, drawing away effortlessly to win by three lengths. Casner was on hand to witness her colt's victory along with her husband Bill, daughter Kayce and son-in-law Clark Anderson, and racing manager Eliot Walden, who was very impressed by the performance.
The homebred colt won for the second time in three starts at three different racetracks. He began his career on August 19th at Del Mar, finishing second by a half-length in a six furlong Maiden Special Weight. In that race, he finished a half-length in front of today's runner up Overextended, who was coming off a seventh place finish in the Bessemer Trust Breeders' Cup Juvenile (gr. I). Colonel John returned at Oak Tree on October 7th to easily defeat maidens by 4 1/2 lengths going seven furlongs in 1:21.2. His connections were quite confident that he would step up and handle the distance of today's race and the betting public agreed.
"He has good breeding for the Derby. So we'll just keep our fingers crossed, and I know he's on that road, so I'm looking forward to his next race," said trainer Eoin Harty. "The distance for this horse is not going to be a problem; he is certainly coming around nicely. The Hollywood Futurity will be his likely return spot, but he will have to be supplemented, so that's something we'll have to talk about."
The Tiznow son was bred in Kentucky by Susan Casner and raised at WinStar Farm in Versailles. He is out of the Turkoman mare Sweet Damsel, who was chosen out of a sale by Casner. The mare has a yearling full-brother to Colonel John for whom Casner also has high hopes. She is currently in foal to Speightstown, but Casner said her mare is now "married to Tiznow." She said of her new star after the Real Quiet Stakes, "He's very special to me."