Bred: Millsec, LTD.
Sire: First Defence
Dam: Rising Tornado, by Storm Cat
Close Hatches won her maiden by seven lengths and her second start by 1 1/4 lengths. In her stakes debut, the Gazelle, she made herself a Kentucky Oaks contender by winning by 3 1/4 lengths over highly touted Princess of Sylmar. After an unplaced finish in the Kentucky Oaks, she went on to place second in the Acorn Stakes (G1) behind Midnight Lucky.
Close Hatches lived up to her potential in June when she scored her first Grade 1 victory in the Mother Goose Stakes at Belmont Park by 7 1/4 lengths. She won her next race at Parx Racing, the Grade 1 Cotillion Stakes, with confidence. She wrapped up her sophomore season with a runner-up effort in the Breeders' Cup Distaff and was named a finalist for champion 3-year-old filly.
The filly began her 4-year-old season with wins in the Grade 2 Azeri and the Grade 1 Apple Blossom before defeating both Princess of Sylmar and Beholder in the Grade 1 Ogden Phipps on Belmont Stakes day. She then solidified her credentials as the best female in training in the U.S. with a 5-length tour de force in the Pensonal Ensign Stakes on Aug. 22 at Saratoga.
Close Hatches is from the first crop of Grade 1 winner First Defence and her second dam (mother) is a sister to European champion Xaar. She comes from the famed Juddmonte female family of Cityscape and Bated Breath.