HIS weekend’s Grade 2 $500,000 Black Eyed Susan Stakes on Pimlico’s Preakness card shapes as a battle of the progeny of two Vinery stallions with former USA Freshman Champion Congrats up against rising star Big Brown.
Congrats filly Toasting seeks to add a major to her Grade 1 placing in the Frizette Stakes lodged in the middle of last year at Belmont Park in New York.
A win would see her become Congrats’ fourth Grade 1 winner alongside the likes of WTR champion Turbulent Descent who won a total of four Grade 1’s during her brilliant career.
Congrats has built on his tremendous first season with multiple crops of major race winners underpinned by a remarkable 75.7 percent winers to ratio serving up 128 individual race winners from 169 runners.
He is also the sire of 27 stakes performers.
The Florida bred filly is guaranteed a serious rival for the Black Eyed purse via Big Brown 3YO Maracuya who remains unbeaten after her only two runs both at Gulfstream Park.
The Ralph Nicks trained filly debuted with a comfortable win in her maiden over 1200m on March 6 before an ever easier win over the mile at the end of the month.
Pimlico racetrack is synomous with Big Brown, it was the scene of his thumping 5 1/4-lens win in the 2008 Preakness immediately following his record breaking 4 3/4-lens win in the Kentucky Derby.
Big Brown has risen to become one of the world’s most promising young sires with a total of 28 winners around the globe – 16 of them in 2013 so far – including 2 stakeswinners.
And just next week he will be represented in the prestigious Japan Derby (2400m) by crack colt Apollo Sonic who was beaten a nose in the Group 1 Satsuki Sho at his last start.