Ridden by Orlando Bocachica, the 3-year-old son of Broken Vow punched his ticket to the $1 million Haskell Invitational (gr. I) July 27 after covering the 1 1/16-mile Long Branch distance over a fast track in 1:42.55.
"(Irish You Well) responded very well when he was asked and ran a really good race," said winning trainer Wayne Catalano, who credited Bocachica for "a great job."
"We're planning to run him in the Haskell. He's stabled there (at Monmouth) and that's the reason I broke his maiden over there. He handles the surface really well."
Off at odds of 5-1 in a field of eight sophomores, Irish You Well paid $12, $5.80 and $3.60. Just Call Kenny completed the $72.40 exacta with a $5.60 and $3.60 return, while Encryption brought $3.40 to show while another 2 1/2 lengths back in third. Then came All Tied Up, 8-5 favorite Misconnect, Wise Child, Tiz'naz, and Pass the Coffee.
"I just wanted to break well and get good position," Bocachica said. "I knew I had horse so the plan was to wait until the horses behind me came to me before I made my move. It worked out perfect."
Bred in Kentucky by Dell Hancock and Bernie Sams out of the Pulpit mare Pun, Irish You Well was a $170,000 purchase from the 2012 Keeneland September yearling sale when consigned by Claiborne Farm. He broke his maiden last out at Monmouth June 15, winning by an impressive 7 1/2 lengths at odds of 2-5. Irish You Well had back-to-back thirds in the Peter Pan Stakes (gr. III) and Illinois Derby (gr. III) prior to graduating.
The Long Branch win moved his lifetime mark to 2-1-5 from 10 starts, good for earnings of $182,150.