English Group 2 winner RADIOHEAD (GB) (Johannesburg), who was scratched from last Saturday's Hutcheson S. (G2), made his debut for Richard Dutrow exactly one week later in Saturday's 3RD race at Gulfstream Park. The classy sophomore proved to be worth the wait in his first try on dirt. After forcing the pace beneath Edgar Prado, Radiohead stretched 3 1/4 lengths clear while rattling off the fast-track mile in 1:35 4/5. The 8-5 favorite returned $5.20, $3.20 and $2.60.
As expected, the speedy General Maximus (Freud) went straight to the early lead in the allowance affair and carved out fractions of :24 and :47 4/5. Radiohead showed more early foot than usual in second, just a half-length off General Maximus. On the far turn, Radiohead ratcheted up the pressure through six furlongs in 1:12, soon put the pacesetter away, and held sway down the stretch.
Dutrow's other entrant, Champagne S. (G1) victor Homeboykris (Roman Ruler), rebounded from a pair of subpar efforts to finish second by a half-length. Call Shot (Tale of the Cat) ran evenly in third, three-quarters of a length ahead of the tiring General Maximus. Quick Ride (Afleet Alex) and Thomas Got Even (Stephen Got Even) rounded out the order of finish. Gesu (Proud Accolade), cross-entered to Sunday's 2ND race, was scratched.
Radiohead was last seen finishing seventh in the November 7 Breeders' Cup Juvenile (G1) at Santa Anita. That race, which was his American, two-turn and synthetic bow, also marked his final start for trainer Brian Meehan. Originally based in England, the chestnut first attracted attention with his terrific victory in the Norfolk S. (Eng-G2) at Royal Ascot, overcoming a full-body slam in deep stretch to win going away by two lengths. Radiohead went on to rally strongly for third versus tough older sprinters in the Nunthorpe S. (Eng-G1) at York. Subsequently fourth in the Mill Reef S. (Eng-G2), he came back to finish a hard-charging runner-up in the Middle Park S. (Eng-G1).
On the heels of that performance, IEAH Stables and Pegasus Holding Group moved in to purchase an interest in Radiohead from owners Carmen Burrell and Jonathan Harvey, who have retained part of the colt. He has now earned $232,446 from his 8-3-2-1 line.
Bred by Redmyre Bloodstock and S. Hillen in Great Britain, Radiohead brought $192,972 as a Goffs November weanling, then sold for $142,882 as a Tattersalls October yearling. He is out of the unraced Belong to Me mare Security Interest, and his second dam, stakes queen Shes Got the Facts (Known Fact), is a full sister to Grade 3 victress Fancy Freda. Further back, this is the family of Champagne winner A P Valentine (A.P. Indy), runner-up in the 2001 Preakness S. (G1) and Belmont S. (G1), and Irish stakes heroine Heart Shaped (Storm Cat), who just missed in the 2008 Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf.