Nyquist covered the 1 1/16 miles in 1:43.79 as the 5-1 second choice in the race in the 14 horse field. It was the fifth Breeders’ Cup training victory for Doug O’Neill and the second Juvenile win for O’Neill, who won the 2005 edition with Stevie Wonderboy.
"The race didn't unfold like I expected," O'Neill said. "We thought, being on the outside there, with kind of a short run to the first turn, we'd be up on the lead, saving ground. I have to watch the replay, but from my recollection we were five or six wide. But Mario [Gutierrez] did his Mario thing where he just never panicked. From day one, before this horse ever debuted, he had the mind and the stride of a two-turn horse. He was pressured early, and I think with that race under his belt, he turned it around today."
The victory brought Nyquist the 2-year-old championship, just as his sire had earned five years before.
Nyquist came into the Juvenile with a four-race win streak capped by his three-quarter length victory in the Grade 1 FrontRunner Stakes after surviving a steward’s inquiry. Three week earlier, he dominated the Del Mar Futurity by 3 ¾ lengths, which followed his easy victory in Del Mar’s Best Pal Stakes. In his only other start, Nyquist earned a hard-fought victory against maidens June 5 at Santa Anita.
As a weanling at Keeneland 2013 November sale, Nyquist, bred in Kentucky by Summerhill Farm, turned enough heads that he was sold for $180,000. The following September, he strutted onto the same stage at the Keeneland September yearling sale and waltzed away as a $230,000 purchase. He was even more impressive under saddle at Fasig-Tipton’s Florida Sale at Gulfstream Park in March. Dennis O’Neill, acting as agent for his brother, trainer Doug O’Neill, made a final bid of $400,000 to obtain the colt for owner Paul Reddam.
Breeders’ Cup Record
Breeders’ Cup Races Won
|2015 Sentient Jet Juvenile|