HALLANDALE BEACH, FL — Harrell Venture LLC’s Battery ($3.00) continued his progression with a professional performance in yesterday’s fourth race at Gulfstream Park, a nine-furlong allowance for 3-year-olds.
Heavily favored against four rivals, the Ontario-bred son of Bernardini settled into an easy rhythm in third under jockey Javier Castellano. Fashionable Freddy set even fractions of :48.13 and 1:12.72 while shadowed by Isofass, but the Triple Crown-nominated Battery swooped past them on the second turn to take the lead, and was never seriously threatened by the rallying All Up in Lights. He hit the wire two lengths clear and was timed in 1:49.69.
“That was perfect,” Castellano said. “It was a dream trip—I like to see two horses go to the lead and keep a target on those two horses. We taught him a little bit, that he doesn’t have to be on the lead. When I asked him he responded—you can really feel the acceleration. I think he’s the kind of horse that the more distance, the better.”
After finishing fourth in his career opener for trainer Todd Pletcher at Woodbine in October, Battery graduated by 3 1/4 lengths at Gulfstream Park West on November 21. He was favored next out in a January 9 allowance at Gulfstream, but had to settle for second behind runaway winner Cherry Wine, who is among the leading candidates for the $400,000 Fountain of Youth Stakes (G2) on February 27.
“He wasn’t on the lead last time, but he finished strong and was second-best that time,” Castellano added. “It was his first time going a mile and an eighth today and he proved that he’s a very competitive horse. He really did well.”
Produced by the Saint Ballado mare Flawless Diamond, Battery is a half-brother to the talented Canadian performer Blue Heart. He was purchased as a 2-year-old for $350,000 at the OBS June Sale.
Source: Gulfstream Park