More Than Ready is a potent force when matched with Danehill-line mares and that cross claimed another classic in the G3 American Derby (1900m) at Arlington Park on Saturday.
The Vinery champion sired his 117th stakes winner when Infinite Magic split rivals in the straight to score for the first time since arriving from England earlier this year.
Infinite Magic (3c More Than Ready – Truly Enchanting by Danehill Dancer) was bred in Kentucky and commenced his career with wins at Wolverhampton and Lingfield before Team Valor president Barry Irwin weighed in with an offer to take him back the United States.
Team Valor also raced G1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile winner Pluck (More Than Ready) who will serve his second southern book at Vinery this year.
Infinite Magic had won both British races on synthetic tracks but looked right at home on turf at Arlington Park. “He put me in a nice position,” jockey Channing Hill said. “We had a beautiful trip and my only concern was he wouldn’t see the others out wide but, once he did, he dug in.
“I was really surprised how much horse I had to the wire. He’s a really nice horse.”
Infinite Magic (USA) scored first-up in a Keeneland allowance on turf in April but was then unplaced in the G2 Peter Pan Stakes and G3 Hill Prince Stakes on dirt at Belmont Park.
Team Valor trainer Rick Mettee indicated the G1 Secretariat Stakes (2000m) is the next goal for Infinite Magic. It’s scheduled for August 17 on Arlington’s turf track.
More Than Ready is gunning for another Group 1 in the Haskell Invitational at Monmouth Park on July 28. His top-class colt Verrazano will be one of the favourites after scoring a 9 length victory last time out in the G3 Pegasus Stakes at Monmouth Park
Vinery will stand More Than Ready for a $99,000 (inc gst) service fee in 2013.
– Karl Patterson