Justify Daughter Justique Dominates at Del Mar
It was a dominant debut victory for Justify’s Justique (2f Justify x Grazie Mille, by Bernardini) on Sunday night at Del Mar when the filly closed from well off the pace to win going away when held well in hand.
Justique broke a step slowly and found herself more than 15 lengths behind the leader with multiple lengths in front of her to the second-to-last horses. Victor Espinoza patiently handled the debutant, letting her get comfortable before making her way through the field in the 5 ½ furlong race.
The Justify daughter showed tremendous talent to go from a well-back last to just behind the leaders by the top of the stretch and there was more to come. Switched to the outside, Justique never felt the whip as she flew past the dueling front runners.
Knowing he had the race wrapped up, her jockey took all pressure off her before she even had the lead and she still won by three lengths in the end with plenty more to come. The victory earned her Thoroughbred Daily News Rising Star status, the second Justify runner to receive that billing.
The half-sister to Uncle Mo’s Grade I-winning son and Ashford stallion Mo Town is trained by John Shirreffs for C R K Stable.
Bred by John Gunther and Eurowest Bloodstock, who bred Mo Town with Gunther also breeding Justify, Justique was a $725,000 Keeneland September graduate when purchased by Mayberry Farm from the Glennwood Farm consignment.
Grazie Mille is also the dam of Uncle Mo’s two-time winner Champagne Lady and herself is a half-sister to two stakes winners and another stakes-placed runner out of Grade III winner and multiple Grade I-placed Molto Vita.
Grazie Mille foaled another filly by Justify on March 29 of this year.
Undefeated Triple Crown winner Justify is off to a red-hot start to his stallion career with six winners including graded stakes winner on both the dirt and turf in the U.S. and Ireland.