Zaikov headed to an allowance following stellar debut
Zaikov ran to his pedigree in his debut at Gulfstream Park on Friday, capturing a six-furlong maiden special weight event by 14 1/4 lengths without much urging from jockey John Velazquez.
The Arindel Farm homebred pressed the pace before moving to the lead on the far turn and drawing off impressively in the stretch. The son of Distorted Humor and 2006 champion three-year-old filly Wait a While was clocked in 1:09 3/5 while easily winning the 7TH race.
Zaikov is Wait a While's first registered foal.
"We loved his mother. She was one of our all-time favorites. He's trained really well on the dirt, and she was good on all surfaces," said trainer Todd Pletcher, who conditioned Wait a While during her more than $2-million dollar career.
"He acted like a really talented colt, and we're glad to get him going."
Zaikov prepped for his debut while working at Palm Meadows Training Center on March 10 in company with Shanghai Bobby, the 2012 juvenile champion who is pointing for the Grade 1 Florida Derby on March 30.
"He had some typical baby stuff that delayed him coming in a little bit. But since he's come to us, he's been very straightforward and he's trained really well," Pletcher explained.
According to his trainer, Zaikov is likely to surface next in an allowance on dirt.
"As long as he continues to run like that, he's certainly not having any trouble with it," Pletcher said.
Wait a While herself competed nine times on main tracks, recording a 6 1/2-length victory in the off-the-turf Miss Grillo at Belmont Park in 2005, a 14-length romp in the Grade 2 Davona Dale at Gulfstream Park in her 2006 opener and placing fourth in the Grade 1 Kentucky Oaks, just to name a few of those efforts.
The gray daughter of Maria's Mon found her biggest success on turf, though. Eleven of her 12 career wins came in stakes, and eight of those were recorded on turf courses, including Grade 1 tallies in the American Oaks Invitational and the Yellow Ribbon (twice).
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