(Flashy Bull x Pleasure Cat, by Cat’s Career)
- Trainer: Bill Mott (Cigar, To Honor and Serve, Drosselmeyer)
- Jockey: Junior Alvarado
- Owned by: West Point Thoroughbreds
- Record: 5:2-3-0
- Earnings: $196,100
- Best speed figures: 95 Beyer, 99 Equibase
Background: The hype machine can be congratulated for motivating a lot of people to back Flashy Gray as the Oaks favorite earlier in the year, particularly when she sold at top-dollar from Dolphus Morrison— better known as the original owner/breeder of Kentucky Oaks sensation Rachel Alexandra— and trainer Bill Mott. While she has not rebounded off all the hype as expected, she is still seen as a speedy, bold kind of contender that is worth watching.
Prep Schedule: Flashy Gray broke her maiden on her second try on Churchill’s dirt main going 6 1/2 furlongs as a two-year-old, ending her short juvenile campaign on a high note with that 10 1/2-length romp before changing hands as a three-year-old. Mott put his new star in a 7-furlong allowance at Gulfstream in February, where she galloped to an easy 4 3/4-length win. A month later, she chased Rose to Gold around the track to lose by a couple lengths— but well clear of the rest— in her stakes debut in the Honeybee (III). Wheeled back in 3 weeks, Flashy Gray ran second-best again when Junior Alvarado dropped the whip and ran her wide, finishing second to Unlimited Budget by 1 3/4 lengths in the Fair Grounds Oaks (II).
Pedigree: Flashy Bull is best known for passing on early ability and speed as seen in previous crops which included Flashy Lassie and Flashy Dresser. But make no mistake, Flashy Bull had some long-term ability and didn’t show off his best until later on when he won the Stephen Foster (I) as a 4-year-old. A son of legendary Holy Bull, he is out of the Mt. Livermore mare Iridescence, making him a half to stakes winner Pink Viper. Flashy Gray is free of inbreeding through the first five generations.
Estimated TrueNicks Rating: A Variant 2.51
Running Style: Off-the-pace
Pros: Flashy Gray had a strong effort last out in the Fair Grounds Oaks, which may have gone better than second had Alvarado not dropped the whip and run her wide. She could very well get better and win should the pace up front fall apart and has Churchill winning experience.
Cons: Junior Alvarado returns to try again in the Oaks, and he’s the one that gave her a poor trip last out. Her record reads full of excuses.
Final Word: Secret huge plus: Flashy Gray is bred by Brereton Jones (Mark Valeski, Believe You Can, Ive Struck a Nerve). I liked Flashy Gray from a safe vantage point, being well aware she had probably a little too much early hype for a Flashy Bull two-year-old. But, she’s been holding water well with her graded stakes placings and looks to be moving well on a track she’s familiar with. Most will read the PPs and see that she has lost to others in this race, but she could be worth a gamble considering all of her connections and the right trip.