Hofburg kicked off the weekend early with an outstanding win in the $100,000 Curlin Stakes at Saratoga and Unique Bella closed it out on Sunday with a win in the Grade 1 Clement L. Hirsch Stakes at Del Mar. As good as those races were, though, neither made our Three Stars of the Week. All the action that went on in-between those two races was nothing short of spectacular. Let’s take a look at last weekend’s tremendous performances and see who did make our Three Stars of the Week.
1. Good Magic
Good Magic did what he needed to do on Sunday, dominating the Grade 1 Haskell Invitational and confirming that he is indeed the second-best 3-year-old in the country. The son of Curlin sat in second by himself while rating behind 45-1 shot Roaming Union up the backstretch. Turning for home, he had already taken the lead from the front-runner, and it quickly became obvious that no other horse was going to win. He kept to task down the lane and held off a late run from Bravazo to win by 3 lengths. It remains to be seen where the colt may make his next start, but you would have to think that the Grade 1 Travers Stakes at Saratoga is now a major possibility after this dominating win.
2. Imperial Hint
This may have been the most dominant performance in a Grade 1 event so far this year. The usually-speedy Imperial Hint was out-sprinted a bit early during the running of the Grade 1 Vanderbilt Handicap, but he took charge with absolute ease at the top of the stretch while making a wide move, then ran away from the field without even being asked to run. The final margin of victory was 3 3/4 lengths, but it could have been 10 if the jockey wanted. This type of performance will probably beat any sprinter in the country and serves notice that he could be very tough to handle when Breeders’ Cup season rolls around.
3. Ransom the Moon
The ghost of Bing Crosby must be a huge fan of Ransom the Moon. For the second straight year, this son of Malibu Moon has come to Del Mar and picked up a huge win in the Grade 1 Bing Crosby Stakes. This year, he dropped near the back of the pack and made a huge move down the lane to mow them all down late at odds of 9-2. This was his first win since last year’s victory in this race. In fact, he had only hit the board once in 4 starts since that win. Even more amazingly, it was the second straight Bing Crosby where he defeated the prior year’s Breeders’ Cup TwinSpires Sprint winner. Last year, it was Drefong, and this year, it was Roy H, who finished second in his first race since March.