Picture: Echo Again (horseracingnation.com)
The grey was enormously impressive on channel 240 on Saturday night at Saratoga and the below article tells more about a star in the making.
Echo Again Dazzles In Debut Romp
Melissa Simser (drf.com)
Echo Again, a son of Gun Runner, left his rivals far behind in the stretch while covering 6 1/2 furlongs in a rapid 1:15.89.
Trainer Steve Asmussen may have unleashed the most impressive juvenile colt of the Saratoga meeting Saturday when Echo Again cruised to a 6 3/4-length debut victory in a 6 1/2-furlong maiden race.
With Ricardo Santana Jr. filling in for an ill Joel Rosario, Echo Again broke sharp, made a 1 1/2-length lead after an opening quarter in 22.39 seconds which he maintained after a half-mile in 45.66. He began to widen around the far turn and continued to draw off while covering 6 1/2 furlongs in 1:15.89 and getting a 94 Beyer Speed Figure.
Summonyourcourage, making his fourth start, finished second by 6 3/4 lengths over Expected Value.
“He’s trained like that,” Asmussen said. “We’re very fortunate to have some unbelievable horses but he’s been separate, or better, or different – however you want to put it – the whole time. He’s from a great pedigree of [owner Ron] Winchell’s, another outstanding Gun Runner.”
Echo Again is out of the Tapit mare Teardrop, herself a sister to the Asmussen-trained Grade 1 winner Pyro.
Asmussen said Echo Again was the pick of his father’s who breaks many of his son’s horses at a training center in Laredo, Texas.
Steve Asmussen said his son Keith exercises Echo Again regularly.
“He said ‘It’s the best horse I’ve ever been on’ and I believe him,” Steve Asmussen said.
Asmussen said he was a little concerned with how Echo Again would handle the large crowd on Alabama Day, but the horse was well-behaved in the paddock and on the track.
“I love how he acted,” Asmussen said. “He’s very confident in his ability. For him to come over on Alabama Day – a lot of people – he kept his head about him in the post parade, was away cleanly, and ran like he worked.”
Asmussen said Santana told him Echo Again is faster than Gunner Runner was at 2.
“Ricardo broke Gun Runner’s maiden and said I think he’s faster than his dad,” Asmussen said.
Asmussen said he wasn’t sure where Echo Again would make his next start. Asmussen has frequently used the Grade 1 Champagne – this year to be run Oct. 1 at Aqueduct – for horses who win their maidens late at Saratoga.