Head Of State Stakes Bound After Australian Victory
American Pharoah’s Head Of State (2c American Pharoah x Derelique, by Danehill Dancer) was an impressive two length winner over 6 ½ furlongs at Warwick Farm in Australia on Wednesday in his second start.
The first Australian winner for the Triple Crown winner from only five runners, the Chris Waller trainee went off as the heavy favorite. Racing in second, Head Of State looked relaxed under James McDonald as he steadily closed the gap on the leader in the first three furlongs. By the time they entered the stretch, he was less than half a length from taking command with McDonald handling him confidently.
Head Of State was given just a few taps in the final furlong to keep him focused as he galloped home two lengths in front.
Waller was happy with the colt’s performance after seeing Head Of State’s talent from the time he won his debut trial last October. Making his second start – and first since November - Head Of State has higher goals in mind now that he’s shed his maiden tag.
“That was pretty exciting for American Pharoah, I was lucky enough to meet the horse and his trainer at Coolmore in America and it was a real highlight for me,” said Waller. “This is his first Australian winner, but it won’t be his last. He did everything right and let down strongly, he’ll take a lot of benefit out of today. We see him as a Sires, Champagne Stakes type of horse and if not he’ll be a Guineas horse in the spring.”
A half-brother to Uncle Mo’s Group II winner Man From Uncle, Head Of State was bred by Brad Crismale and is the third winner from his Danehill Dancer mare Derelique. The 2-year-old colt was the most expensive yearling sold from American Pharoah’s first Australian crop when Tom Magnier went to A$850,000 to buy him from the Lime Country Thoroughbreds draft at the Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale.
Derelique foaled an American Pharoah filly in 2019 and returned to him last September.