Henny Hughes filly Beholder has been named Champion 2YO Filly at the USA Eclipse Awards with an overwhelming 225 votes.
The Spendthrift Farm filly was way out on her own ahead of Executiveprivilege (27 votes) and Dreaming of Julia & So Many Ways who polled one vote each.
Beholder is a leggy daughter of lightning-quick sprinter Henny Hughes who stands at Rangeview Stud in Western Australia. Her rise to the top of the juvenile rankings has sparked renewed interest in her sire and Rangeview’s Rob Gray now reverse shuttles him back to Walmac Farm in Lexington.
Henny Hughes is a son of former Australian shuttler Hennessy. Another of his sons Wiseman’s Ferry sired 2012 USA Horse of the Year Wise Dan.
Bred by Clarkland Farm, Beholder cost Spendthrift Farm owner B. Wayne Hughes $180,000 at the 2011 Keeneland September yearling sale. She finished fourth on debut behind Executiveprivlege at Hollywood Park in June before breaking her maiden by three lengths a month later at Del Mar.
Beholder was nailed in the last stride by Executiveprivilege when they hooked up again in the G1 Del Mar Debutante in September. Hall of Fame trainer Richard Mandella kept her ticking over with a comfortable allowance win at Santa Anita before the Grand Final in the G1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies.
Beholder never gave her arch-rival a look-in at Santa Anita after blazing the first 800m of the 1700m event in 46.47s. Executiveprivilege made a move at the top of the straight but chased the leader in vain after shifting wide in the final furlong.
“She really enjoys racing,” Mandella said. “And she’s obviously pretty good at it. She’s just a natural racehorse.”
Beholder (3f Henny Hughes – Leslie’s Lady by Tricky Creek) returns to racing on Monday in the G2 Santa Ynez Stakes (1300m) and she has drawn a wide barrier at Santa Anita. “I would rather be out there because we’ve been working her behind horses,” jockey Garrett Gomez said. “She has a mind of her own so being outside lets me play a patient hand if there’s a lot of speed. If she doesn’t settle, it will be ‘vamoose’ and I will let her go.”
Henny Hughes filly voted Champion USA 2YO Filly