Violence became a Grade 1 winner in his third career start, remaining undefeated with a 1 ¼ length victory in the CashCall Futurity Saturday at Betfair Hollywood Park.
Giving shippers a sweep of the four Grade 1 events offered during the Autumn meet, Violence, who is trained by Todd Pletcher for Steve Marshall’s Black Rock Thoroughbreds, received a ground saving ride for most of the trip from jockey Javier Castellano.
Angled outside Fury Kapcori, a 16-1 shot who survived a four-pronged battle for the early lead, for the stretch run, Violence gained a short lead with less than an eighth of a mile remaining and went on to a workmanlike win.
The final time for the 1 1/16 miles over Cushion Track was 1:43.50. A $600,000 purchase at the Keeneland September sale in 2011, Violence returned $4.40, $4.20 and $3.40.
A son of Medaglia d’Oro out of the Gone West mare Violent Beauty, Violence, who increased his bankroll to $543,000, has earned his wins at three different tracks.
Betfair Hollywood Park joined Saratoga – a maiden victory by a neck Aug. 18 – and Aqueduct – a two-length decision in the Grade 2 Nashua Nov. 4.
“He’s a colt that we’ve thought a lot of all along,’’ said Pletcher, who won his second significant 2-year-old race in California in a span of six weeks, following Shanghai Bobby’s victory in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile.
“He’s a big, leggy colt that we felt like was going to continue to improve and mature. After he won first time out, we talked about a couple of strategies. One was to try and make the Breeders’ Cup and the other was a more patient strategy.
“We decided to wait on the Nashua and when he ran so well in there, we started looking at whether we wanted to run him back in 20 days in the Remsen (at Aqueduct), put him away for the winter or look for something else.
“We decided that if we were going to run him once more this year, this race made the most sense. Another factor in deciding to ship out here is that he is the kind of horse that has such a great disposition and good mind that shipping wouldn’t bother him at all.’’
Pletcher added that Violence will get some time off and probably won’t make his 3-year-old debut until sometime in late February or early March.
Castellano, who had won the Grade 1 Hollywood Derby Nov. 25 aboard the New York bred Unbridled Command, is looking forward to 2013 with Violence.
“I positioned myself in a very good spot around the first turn and I believe that was the key to winning this race,’’ said Castellano. “You don’t want to be too far back, particularly in a race for 2-year-olds.
“I had a lot of confidence in this colt. He is so calm and handles himself very professionally. I think he is a special horse and I am really looking forward to big times.’’