Record-Priced 2-Year-Old Makes First Start
by Ron Mitchell
Date Posted: 12/10/2004 7:41:36 AM
Last Updated: 12/11/2004 1:31:48 PM

Fusaichi Samurai, breezing earlier this year before being sold for a record $4.5 million.
Photo: Leslie Martin
Fusaichi Samurai, whose purchase by Fusao Sekiguchi for $4.5 million earlier this year set a record for a juvenile sold at public auction, is scheduled to make his first career start Saturday in the fourth race at Hollywood Park.

A son of 2000 Kentucky Derby (gr. I) winner Fusaichi Pegasus  , who was raced by Sekiguchi, Fusaichi Samurai will be ridden by Victor Espinoza for trainer Neil Drysdale.

"Absolutely!" said Drysdale on a sunny Friday morning when asked if he was excited about the colt's debut. "Time is running out on the year. It's getting late."

Consigned by Kirkwood Stables to the Fasig-Tipton Calder 2-year-olds in training sale, the colt was produced from the unraced Storm Cat filly Hidden Storm, a half-sister to grade III winner Jazz Club.

Seven 2-year-olds have been entered in the 6 1/2-furlong maiden special weight. Saturday's date is significant because five years ago to the day, Fusaichi Pegasus was ridden to a second-place finish by Espinoza in his career debut at Hollywood Park.

Fusaichi Pegasus, known for his headstrong attitude as well as his tremendous ability, gave Drysdale his first Kentucky Derby winner. Fusaichi Samurai isn't like his sire.

"He's a different type of horse than Fusaichi Pegasus," said Drysdale. "This horse is very straight forward. He is a tall horse, a little leaner than Fusaichi Pegasus."

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