May 18, 2021

Timeline stays unbeaten in Peter Pan but Belmont Stakes appears doubtful

Timeline wins his stakes debut, the May 13 Peter Pan (G3) at Belmont Park, for owner Woodford Racing., trainer Chad Brown and jockey Javier Castellano (c) Annette Jasko/Adam Coglianese Photo

The Peter Pan (G3) serves as a local prep for the $1.5 million Belmont Stakes (G1) four weeks later but Timeline may not be headed to final jewel of the Triple Crown despite remaining unbeaten on Saturday. Owned by Woodford Racing and trained by Chad Brown, the 2-5 favorite waited until midstretch to reel in pacesetter Meantime and won his stakes debut going away by 3 ½ lengths on a sloppy track. Javier Castellano was up.

“I’ll speak to Bill Farish, who manages this horse, and we’ll go from there,” Brown said when asked about the 12-furlong Belmont Stakes on June 10. “We had spoken earlier in the day that if we had some success here, the (July 30) Haskell (G1) (at Monmouth Park) is a race that we have a lot of interest in, with maybe one race between now and then.

“He doesn’t strike me as a mile-and-a-half horse, but I’m not going to declare him out of the (Belmont Stakes). I’ll discuss that with Mr. Farish, but that wasn’t really my plan going in here. We’re still in the developmental stage with this horse.”

Timeline didn’t make his first start until March 4, rallying to get up late by a half-length in a salty 7-furlong maiden special weight on the Fountain of Youth (G2) undercard at Gulfstream Park. He came back a month later to crush entry-level allowance foes going a mile at Aqueduct, registering a 104 BRIS Speed Rating for the 13-length decision.

In the 1 1/8-mile Peter Pan, the Hard Spun colt stalked the pace in second after Meantime sprinted forward to show the way on a short lead through splits in :24.02, :47.68 and 1:12.99. When the pacesetter spun extremely wide off the far turn into the stretch, Castellano guided Timeline to the inside for the stretch drive.

Timeline began to reduce the margin after straightening for home and easily proved best in the final sixteenth of a mile, stopping the teletimer in 1:51.62.

“He’s a really nice horse and the way he did it today was amazing,” the jockey said. “This kind of horse is very straight forwarded. All you have to do is push a button and he goes forward. The track was a good condition for him. He was really professional. I think he can improve a lot, too.”

Castellano was asked about a potential start in the Belmont Stakes.

“I think he can (go 1 ½ miles). The way he galloped out and stay strong; he can run all day. But it’s up the owner and trainer. But he can handle the slop.”

Meantime held second as the 6-1 third choice, 1 ½ lengths better than 8-1 Impressive Edge. Take Your Guns, 4-1 second choice Master Plan and Lookin at Blessing completed the order of finish.

Bred in Kentucky by Alexander, Groves and Matz LLC, Timeline was purchased for $500,000 at the 2015 Keeneland yearling sale. He’s out of Azorina, a daughter of Belmont Stakes winner Empire Maker. Timeline counts the Grade 1-winning Storm Cat mare Aldiza as his second maternal dam.