Juvenile Behavior: Keeneland 2-Year-Old Races

Blood-Horse will cover each of this year's Keeneland baby races.

Just one of the fun things about the Keeneland spring meeting is welcoming a new crop of 2-year-olds and the Lexington track will waste no time this year, offering a 4 1/2-furlong race for juvenile fillies on its opening day card Friday, April 5.

Keeneland will offer eight "baby races" at its spring meeting. The 4 1/2-furlong events typically are filled with first-time starters. Blood-Horse will take a look at some of the breeding and sales highlights going into each of these races and will review results as part of its Keeneland coverage.

Besides race and news coverage, Blood-Horse will offer added features in The Keeneland Files.

Following are some of the fillies catching our eye in Friday's race, along with their program number, morning-line odds, trainer, and jockey. The race is the fourth on the card and post time is scheduled for 2:38 p.m. EDT.

Sweet Emma Rose, #2, 7-5, (trainer) Wesley Ward, (jockey) John Velazquez: The morning-line favoritism is likely based on the success Ward has enjoyed in these 4 1/2-furlong juvenile races in recent years at Keeneland, not to mention the presence of Velazquez.

By City Zip, who last year ranked ninth in all-weather surface progeny earnings and had 21 winners on synthetic surfaces, Hal Creek Racing's Sweet Emma Rose is the first foal out of the Deputy Minister mare Miss Moneypenny. Bred in Kentucky by The Peter J. Callahan Revocable Trust, Miss Emma Rose is from the family of Canadian champion 2-year-old filly Hello Seattle.

Sweet Emma Rose is listed as an entry with Tomei, the first foal out of the winning Fusaichi Pegasus  mare Teriffany, but with Velazquez listed on both fillies one will likely be scratched.

Mad Princess, #3, 7-2, John Dyer, Roberto Morales: Antonio Otero's Mad Princess is out of the Arch mare Anita Madden, who is a half sister to grade II winner Santa Catarina. Two of Anita Madden's previous foals have won but they did not register those victories until at least age 4.

Summer Time Ranger, #6, 3-1, Wayne Catalano, Corey Lanerie: William Pate and Marshall Powell's Summer Time Ranger will be the first starter for the WinStar Farm-based freshman stallion U S Ranger . Racing exclusively on turf, multiple stakes winner U S Ranger finished second in the 2008 Darley July Cup (Eng-I) and third in the 2009 Inglewood Handicap (gr. IIIT) at Hollywood Park. He twice earned highweight honors in Ireland. A 9-year-old son of Danzig, U S Ranger stands for $5,000 at WinStar Farm.

Summer Time Ranger was bred in Kentucky by Patrick Alexander Randal. Born Feb. 26, 2011, she is out of the stakes-placed In Excess mare Bafferta. All five of Bafferta's starters have won but none of them have registered victories in their 2-year-old seasons.

Second Hand Justice, #9, 20-1, Tommy Short, Matthew Straight: While breaking from the outside post will be difficult for Dwight Preston's Second Hand Justice, the Killenaule filly has some breeding points in her favor in a race like this.

Bred in Indiana by Justice Farm and Greg Justice, Second Hand Justice is out of the Glitterman mare Radiant Justice. Radiant Justice won as a 2-year-old and both of her first two foals have registered wins in their juvenile seasons.

Killenaule, an 11-year-old son of Fusaichi Pegasus, stands for $1,500 at Cedar Brook Farm in Ohio.

The picks: Summer Time Ranger, Sweet Emma Rose, Second Hand Justice.

Follow Frank Angst's Blood-Horse picks this spring on the Keeneland simulcasts.