Haskin: Stradivari ‘Intriguing Unknown Factor’ For Preakness by Paulick Report Staff|05.16.201605.17.2016|6:43pm2:55pm Stradivari wins by 14 1/2 lengths at Keeneland. Stradivari first impressed the racing world with a 11 1/4-length score over maidens at Gulfstream Park, catching the attention of the Coolmore partners, who purchased an interest in the colt. Then, at Keeneland, the 3-year-old son of Medaglia d'Oro stunned the crowd, winning an allowance race by 14 1/2 lengths. What he may lack in race experience, he makes up with the “always intriguing unknown factor,” reports Steve Haskin. Named for a $15.9 million violin made by Italian Anotonio Stradivari, the colt was bred by his owner John Gunther. When entered in the Keeneland September sale, Stradivari did not meet his reserve at $335,000, leading Gunther and his daughter, Tanya, to take the colt back home and put him in training. “When he left his foes behind and kept extending his winning margin all the way to the wire, in both his wins, I had my hand covering my mouth by the end of his run and a glint of something wet and blurry in the eye,” said Tanya Gunther. “To have a homebred run like that fills you with awe, and in that moment it makes up for all of the tough times and disappointments. My dad said that when Stradivari won at Gulfstream, the thought crossed his mind that this might be the best horse he has ever bred.” Trained by Todd Pletcher, Stradivari will attempt to follow in the footsteps of Bernardini to win the Preakness off just three career starts. Read more at bloodhorse.com.