Dreaming of Julia was no secret in her debut, going off as the 2-5 favorite in the field of eight. After shooting up between horses to lead in the opening furlong, Dreaming of Julia led by one length through an opening quarter mile in 22.03 seconds, two lengths through a half in 45.55, five lengths at the stretch call, and 10 ½ lengths on the wire under John Velazquez’s hand ride. Runner-up Form Fitting was 2 ½ lengths clear of third-place finisher Neon Moon.
Trainer Todd Pletcher said Dreaming of Julia has shown potential ever since she showed up in his barn. The homebred is by Hall of Famer and Belmont Stakes winner A.P. Indy and is the first foal out of sprinter Dream Rush, whose stakes victories include graded wins in he Grade 1 Test, Grade 1 Prioress, Grade 2 Nassau County, and the Grade 3 Old Hat.
“She’s a beautiful filly and seems to have a blend of her dam and sire, speed and the ability to carry it over a distance of ground,” said Pletcher. “She’s been a lovely filly from day one and has done everything right.”
Pletcher said if the circumstances were different, Dreaming of Julia could have become the first horse by A.P. Indy to win going six furlongs or shorter at Saratoga.
“I think we had wanted to run her going 5 ½ it would have been OK, but timing-wise this is the one that came up at the right time,” said Pletcher. “She’s been pretty impressive in the morning, so we were hoping for that type of effort.
Pletcher entered Monday’s card atop the trainer standings with 15 wins, with eight having come in 2-year-old races. As a result, the trainer should be formidable in upcoming graded stakes for juveniles like the Grade 2 Saratoga Special and Grade 2 Adirondack on August 12, the Grade 1 Spinaway on September 2, and the Grade 2 Three Chimneys Hopeful on September 3.
“First and foremost, you hope they all stay healthy,” said Pletcher. “And then you have to worry about finding spots for them.”
Other horses previously featured in the New York Watch series include 2010 Champion Two-Year-Old Male Uncle Mo, 2011 Champion Three-Year-Old Filly Royal Delta, 2011 Champion Two-Year-Old Filly My Miss Aurelia, and Grade 1 winners Boys At Tosconova, J. B.’s Thunder, Winter Memories, Currency Swap, and To Honor and Serve.