Verifying, Half-Brother To Champion Midnight Bisou, Will Target Either Rebel Or Risen Star - Horse Racing News | Paulick Report

Verifying, Half-Brother To Champion Midnight Bisou, Will Target Either Rebel Or Risen Star

Justify colt Verifying, ridden by Martin Garcia, captures an Oaklawn allowance in 2023 debut

Among the overflowing list of talented 3-year-olds in the barn of trainer Brad Cox is Verifying, the $775,000 Justify colt who is a half-brother to champion Midnight Bisou.

Verifying won on debut, then finished second in the Grade 1 Champagne. He finished sixth in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile after being bumped at the start, beaten 12 lengths by presumptive 2-year-old champion Forte.

In his sophomore debut, Verifying ran lights-out in an allowance optional claiming race at Oaklawn Park to win by 5 1/4 lengths. Now Cox is ready to start the colt in a prep race on the Road to the Kentucky Derby, though the trainer told the Daily Racing Form on Tuesday that he hadn't quite decided on a specific race.

There are two options on the table, Cox said. Verifying will either start in the Grade 2, $400,000 Risen Star at Fair Grounds on Feb. 18, or in the Grade 2, $1 million Rebel at Oaklawn on Feb. 25.

“He's a beautiful horse, well balanced,” Cox told DRF. “I think probably one of his best attributes is that he's kind of easy on himself. He's not a horse that wants to over-train. He just kind of goes along and does what's asked. He's not super aggressive. I think on this Triple Crown trail, that's something Essential Quality taught me – you kind of have to have a horse that doesn't want to overdo it all the time. It's a long, grueling, tough road to get down.”

Read more at the Daily Racing Form.

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