Sky of Hook first stakes winner for Tapiture

Sky of Hook, who was Tapiture’s first-ever winner when he broke his maiden on May 10, became his sire’s first stakes winner on Wednesday when he bested Listentoyourheart by a nose in the $100,000 Rick Violette S. at Saratoga.

Run in a driving rainstorm, the six-furlong Violette went postward with a field of five 2-year-olds. Listentoyourheart set the pace for the first half-mile and opened up what looked like an insurmountable lead with a furlong to run, but Sky of Hook found his best stride in the final sixteenth and hit the wire in front. The time over the extremely sloppy going was 1:13.17.

“The track conditions weren’t ideal, but he broke sharply and handled it well,” said rider Luis Saez. “When we came towards the stretch, I really knew he was game. He was trying his best. I knew I had enough to get there and thankfully we did before the wire.”

Sky of Hook, now 2-for-2 with earnings of $89,100, races for E. V. Racing Stable, who bred the chestnut along with NC Corp. He is the first foal out of Ambitious Dancer, a sister to two-time stakes winner Carbella.

Tapiture has seven individual winners to date, second-most among First-Crop Sires, and is in the top five by progeny earnings.