Its All In The Family: Grip Hands
It runs in the family. We sure hope so. It is that time of year, when everyone starts derby dreaming for next year. It is great to see two-year-olds develop and begin their racing careers. For one West Point two-year-old, his half-brother has turned some heads on the race track.
On May 21, a strapping bay colt named Hunters Bay rolled to victory in his second start in a salty maiden special weight at Belmont Park. It was impressive to say the least. He won by eight lengths and covered a mile and a sixteenth in 1:41 flat. So why are we so excited about the Todd Pletcher trainee? Click here to read a NYRA press release about the colt.
The answer is Smoke'n Frolic. She is the dam of both Hunters Bay and our own Giant‘s Causeway colt named Grip Hands. Smoke'n Frolic earned over $1.5 million in her career and won six graded stakes. Hunters Bay is her second foal. He first foal, A.P. Cardinal is also a winner.
The future looks bright for Hunters Bay. He has the potential to develop into an upper echelon three-year-old this summer. The future looks bright for Grip Hands as well. It doesn't hurt that he is by Giant's Causeway, the world's leading sire of 2009. @
A lot of people ask how this colt got the name Grip Hands. Terry Finley named him in honor of one of his West Point classmates and friends Colonel John McHugh who was killed by a suicide bomber in Afghanistan in May. At West Point, Grip Hands is a term used when there's a fallen member of the "long grey line". John was passionate about horses. Terry could think of no better tribute than to honor his friend than through a special colt like this.
Click here to see Grip Hands' roster page.