Enforceable may have needed four starts to break his maiden, but this late-maturing colt is quickly making up for lost time. Placed against Grade 1 company as a juvenile, Enforceable cemented his credentials for the 2020 Kentucky Derby by rallying to a decisive triumph in the Lecomte (G3) at Fair Grounds.
Like any Kentucky Derby contender, Enforceable is a relatively unproven commodity with lots of questions to answer. But at least handicappers can rest assured he has the pedigree to be successful running classic distances.
From top to bottom, Enforceable is bred for stamina. Sire Tapit has been the leading general sire in North America on three occasions and is responsible for three winners of the 1 1/2-mile Belmont Stakes (G1): Tonalist (2014), Creator (2016), and Tapwrit (2017). Stamina isn’t a concern here, though Tapit’s progeny often mature later in life, and the Kentucky Derby tends to come and go before they’re ready to give their best. Sons of Tapit are 0-for-10 in the Kentucky Derby, though Tapit has sired at least one Derby starter every year since 2012, an achievement in and of itself.
Four of Tapit’s Derby starters crossed the Churchill Downs finish line in fourth place, including Mohaymen in 2016. Coincidentally, Enforceable is a full brother to Mohaymen, as both are sons of Tapit produced by the classy Dixie Union mare Justwhistledixie.
On and off the racetrack, Justwhistledixie has been a resounding success. A formidable four-time stakes winner, Justwhistledixie enjoyed her greatest racing success in 2009, winning the Davona Dale (G2) and Bonnie Miss (G2) before placing second in the Acorn (G1).
But Justwhistledixie has risen to an entirely different level as a broodmare. In addition to Enforceable and Mohaymen (the latter a four-time Grade 2 winner running a mile or farther), Justwhistledixie has produced Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (G1) winner New Year’s Day and La Jolla Handicap (G3) winner Kingly, the latter a son of Tapit. In short, Justwhistledixie has produced four graded stakes winners from five starters, and they’ve all achieved their signature victories running at least a mile.
Perhaps some of this stamina is coming from Justwhistledixie’s sire, Dixie Union, who prevailed in the 1 1/8-mile Haskell Invitational (G1). Many of Dixie Union’s most successful foals were at their best traveling a mile or farther, including Belmont Stakes winner Union Rags and 1 1/16-mile Norfolk (G1) winner Dixie Chatter.
Suffice to say, there’s no reason to think Enforceable won’t thrive running 1 1/4 miles or even 1 1/2 miles, making him a major player for the classics. But while he’s making great strides from a maturity standpoint, his pedigree suggests he might peak in late spring or summer, after the Kentucky Derby has been decided.