Etched made an impressive maiden debut at Belmont Park one month ago, winning by 6 3/4 lengths in 1:09.72, and his follow-up in the Nashua was every bit as sharp for trainer Kiaran McLaughlin.
"The nice thing is that his attitude has gotten a little better since his first race," McLaughlin said. "He’s been a little more manageable. He’s a very talented colt."
McLaughlin said the $200,000 Remsen (gr. II) at nine furlongs on Nov. 24 is a possibility for Etched. "He might be deserving to go to Dubai,” he added.
Ridden by Alan Garcia, the 1-2 favorite Etched showed some early speed on a track rated good after breaking second in the one-turn mile test. He opened up a one-length lead after an easy opening quarter-mile of 24.20. Tested briefly by Anakim down the backstretch as they ran through the half-mile split in 48, the son of Forestry edged away while in hand on the turn, completing six furlongs in 1:12.60 to lead by five lengths.
In the stretch, Etched led by as much as eight lengths, coming home in a hand ride in 1:36.96. He finished 6 1/2 lengths in front of Anak Nakal, who nipped Anakim by a head for second.
"He’s a big horse with a real big stride," Garcia said. "He liked the mile and I think he wants more distance. At the quarter pole I was just looking for horses, but no one could keep up with him.”
Bred in Kentucky, Etched is out of the 2001 Breeders’ Cup Distaff (gr. I) winner Unbridled Elaine, by Unbridled's Song. McLaughlin had toyed with the idea of running the chestnut colt in the Bessemer Trust Breeders' Cup Juvenile (gr. I) off the maiden victory, but opted for the more conservative route. Etched earned $64,680 for the win to bump his career total to $95,880.
He paid $3, $2.30, and $2.10. Anak Nakal, ridden by Eibar Coa for trainer Nick Zito, returned $3.30 and $2.30. Anakim, a Giant’s Causeway colt trained by John Kimmel, was $2.30 to show with Cornelio Velasquez aboard.
Trust N Dustan and Saada trailed.