Magna Graduate's latest runner to garner a diploma came Saturday at Keeneland when Bellarmine came home a two-length winner in a 1 1/16-mile maiden special weight contest on the main track.
Bellarmine, bred by Darby Dan Farm's John Phillips, was sixth in the early going, then moved up the rail on the far, swung out for the stretch drive, coming home a handy winner under Keeneland's leading rider Julien Leparoux.
Bellarmine is out of Aly Capri, the dam of Kentucky Cup Juvenile (G3) winner Aly's Alley, who also finished second in the 1998 Breeders' Cup Juvenile (G1), United Nations H. (G1), and Sword Dancer H. (G1). Three-year-old Bellarmine, who was second in his previous two starts at Gulfstream Park, has earned $51,600 in his three outings.
Darby Dan consigned and sold Bellarmine for $40,000 at the 2011 Fasig-Tipton Kentucky Summer Yearling sale, where he was purchase by trainer Ken McPeek on behalf of Susan McPeek's Magdalena Racing.
Magna Graduate has had an excellent second weekend of April, with the 3-year-old filly Blueeyesintherein winning the $75,000 Instant Racing S. at Oaklawn Park on April 13. A top-20 second-crop sire in Kentucky, Magna Graduate stands this year at Darby Dan for $5,000 LFS&N.