Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Sires to Watch: North America's First Crop Stallions

One of Animal Kingdom's first yearlings
With multiple classic and Breeders’ Cup winning racehorses retiring to stud in 2014, there were many choices for breeders when making breeding decisions for their mares. This year, they’ll be able to see if they made the right decisions when that group of stallions have their first runners on the track.

Here are a few of those freshmen sires in North America you may want to keep an eye on this year and next as their first runners get rolling on the track.

Animal Kingdom – Animal Kingdom has already had some success with his first crop of 2-year-olds in Australia and there’s no reason to think that won’t continue in the United States. According to The Jockey Club, he has 110 northern hemisphere 2-year-olds in this year and his average at this early season 2-year-olds in training sale sits at $288,750, with his top priced horse being a $550,000 colt from four sold. While they started winning fairly early in Australia, I expect them to be better as late 2-year-olds or 3-year-olds when they have more opportunities for longer races.

Data Link/Declaration of War – Two Grade/Group 1 winning sons of War Front will have their first juveniles hitting the track this year, giving us more information on how good a sire-of-sires War Front may become. Data Link may have the upper hand here as he stood his first season in the U.S. while Declaration of War was in Ireland that year, though a fair amount of Declaration of War horses have made their way to North America so he should have a nice bit of representation here. War Front has made an early reputation for himself as a 2-year-old sire and The Factor showed he could sire good 2-year-olds last year with a Grade 1 winner so it will be interesting to see if these two continue the trend.

A Data Link yearling
Flat Out – Flat Out has every reason to be a better sire as his runners hit three and four years of age but his 2-year-olds showed at the sales this spring that they may be more precocious than this author originally thought they would be. He has 109 2-year-olds according to The Jockey Club and the most expensive of the six to go through the ring this year sold for $400,000. These guys still should get better with age so he may be better off in the second or third crop standings than the first.

Flat Out
Graydar – The hopeful heir apparent to Unbridled’s Song at Taylor Made, so far people seem to love the Graydars. All eight of his 2-year-olds this year sold for an average of $81,375, up from the $54,465 average for 45 sold as yearlings and the $65,851 average of 27 weanlings sold in 2015. Graydar has 102 2-year-olds with some of the best trainers in the nation and has the support of some of the biggest owners so he’ll have a big chance as a stallion.

New Year’s Day – This Street Cry son wasn’t seen a lot on the track with just three starts in his career and all of them coming between Aug. 17 and Nov. 2, but one of those was a 1 ¼ length win in the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile. He only has 52 2-year-olds but they were well received at the sale with his top yearling last year bringing 10 times his stud fee. He was more popular his second and third years at stud than he was his first, which is a good sign for him.

Orb – The Orbs have developed well with age, getting better reception every year they’ve hit the ring. Most recently, he improved from a $125,000 median on his yearlings last year to $380,000 for his 2-year-olds including a $1.25-million colt. He had no lack of support in his first season with Claiborne limiting his book to about 120 mares with 101 producing foals. He definitely should be a contender for the first season title with the support behind him as one of the top horses of his generation.

Shanghai Bobby – The horse who seems to be talked about the most is Shanghai Bobby, who has been popular since his first season when he bred 160 mares (for 115 live foals). His most expensive to go through the ring was a $575,000 yearling last year while they also seemed to impress at the weanling sales in 2015 with a $190,000 colt and $180,000 filly and a $280,000 weanling filly last year.  From five to go through the ring this year as 2-year-olds, his top priced buy is a $485,000 colt. With the support of Coolmore behind him and his precociousness as a 2-year-old, don’t be surprised if his 2-year-olds come out running.

Shanghai Bobby's $575,000 colt
Violence – The most in demand stallion of any listed here, Violence bred 181 mares in 2014 for 127 live foals according to The Jockey Club. At every stage of his foals going through the ring, Violence has had a horse sell for at least $200,000 including at the weanling stage. Violence won every race he ran in at two, including a Grade 1 and Grade 2 and was second in the Grade 2 Fountain of Youth the following year before being forced into retirement by injury. Between the number of runners he has and the talent he showed himself, he looks like he’ll be another sire with foals who come out running fairly early in the 2-year-old season.

A $335,000 Violence colt

Friday, March 24, 2017

Family Connections Abound in Dubai World Cup Night Races

Bernardini is part of a three generation string of sires
The biggest night of the year in Dubai racing takes place tomorrow with 103 runners hoping to take home some of the millions of dollars on offer during the eight Thoroughbred races on the card. As always, there is some fun pedigree history behind the runners, so here are a few fun facts as we prepare for this year’s Dubai World Cup night.

By the Numbers – The eight Thoroughbred races on the card attracted 103 runners bred in 11 different countries. Those runners represent 81 different sires and 91 broodmare sires with active sires on the list standing in 17 different countries, including Pakistan (Thousand Words). European sire list rivals Dubawi (Dubai Millennium) and Galileo (Sadler’s Wells) lead all sires with six runners each. Three broodmare sires (Danehill, Dubai Destination and Machiavellian) are tied for most runners in that category with three each.

Sires Siring Sires – Acclamation, A.P. Indy, Bernardini, Candy Ride, Exceed and Excel, Galileo, Medicean, Speightstown, Shamardal, Tagula and Unbridled’s Song not only are the sires of runners in the race, they also have sons with runners in the race. Not surprisingly, Galileo again leads this category with three sons with runners in Heliostatic, New Approach and Teofilo.

A.P. Indy – It’s been a big few weeks for A.P. Indy’s line with his son Congrats having a sale topper last week at OBS and big representation this week in Dubai. In addition to siring Dubai World Cup runner Long River, he is also the sire of Bernardini and Saint Anddan, who both have a runner each on the card. He’s also the grandsire of two other sires (Stay Thirsty and Tapit) who have runners. That connection to Stay Thirsty provides a fun three generation ladder with Bernardini siring Stay Thirsty.
Galileo's son Decorated Knight

Danzig – The Northern Dancer is strong in this group of horses and Danzig plays a big part in that as the sire, grandsire or great-grandsire of 17 stallions with runners here. In 11 of those cases, his line runs through Danehill but he also has some sons who have runners. Hard Spun, Langfurh and War Front were all sired by the influential stallion. For the record, since he won’t be getting his own category, 41 of the stallions with runners comes from Northern Dancer’s sire line.

Sadler’s Wells – You can’t have Galileo leading lists without Sadler’s Wells nearby and that’s no exception here. But while Galileo is the headliner of the Sadler’s Wells show, he does have a few other sons playing parts with Montjeu’s son Authorized and El Prado’s son Medaglia d’Oro having a runner apiece here.

Mr. Prospector – Seventeen sires with runners come from Mr. Prospector’s sire line, which isn’t a surprising fact. Which may be though is that six are grandsons of the stallion, including 13-year-old young gun Curlin. While doing these blogs, it’s usual to find Mr. Prospector lurking in the background on many pedigrees but he’s usually at least three generations back.

Sires as Broodmare Sires – Bernardini, Distorted Humor, Elusive Quality, Galileo, Halling, Peintre Celebre, Shamardal and Street Cry are all sires of runners who also double as broodmare sires. Even more impressive may be the feat pulled off by Awesome Again, Cape Cross, Danehill, Danzig, Diesis, Giant’s Causeway, Gone West, Machiavellian, Nureyev, Pivotal, Pulpit, Storm Cat and Sunday Silence who sired at least one son and daughter who have runners on this card.

North America - The Dubai World Cup looks like a showcase for North America with 27 North American-breds (including three Canadians) playing a part as sire, dam or broodmare sire to the race's 14 entries. Awesome Again and Sunday Silence lead all stallions here as the broodmare sires of two runners apiece. Awesome Again's come from two daughters while Sunday Silence's daughter Heavenly Romance is the dam of Lani and Awardee.

Awesome Again
Dubai World Cup Winners in Pedigrees – With the Dubai World Cup only taking place since 1996, it doesn’t leave a ton of time for former World Cup winners to play a major part in pedigrees yet but a few of them will be represented in the races on Saturday. 1997 winner Singspiel is the broodmare sire of Al Quoz Sprint runner Limito, 2000 winner Dubai Millennium is the sire of Dubawi (who has six runners), Street Cry is the sire of Famous Kid and the broodmare sire of Second Summer and Curlin is the sire of Dubai World Cup runner Keen Ice. No Dubai World Cup winner has ever sired another winner and Curlin is the only one who can break that streak this year.

Friday, March 17, 2017

Observations from the 2017 OBS March Sale

Congrats' daughter topped the sale
It was a quick turn-around from the Fasig-Tipton Gulfstream Sale to the Ocala Breeders’ Sales March Sale of 2-Year-Olds in Training but money still flew in Ocala this week.

Five horses sold for $1-million or more compared to two last year with a filly coming out as the most expensive hip for the second sale in a row following the Uncle Mo filly topping Fasig-Tipton’s 2-year-old sale. Here are some quick observations from this year’s OBS March sale and the stallions represented in it.

A.P. Indy Factor – A.P. Indy’s (Seattle Slew) time as a sire at the 2-year-old sales has long since passed but that doesn’t mean his presence wasn’t felt at OBS March. The 28-year-old pensioned stallion is the sire of Congrats, who had the $1.7-million sales topper here. He is also the grandsire of freshman sire Orb (Malibu Moon), who had the second most expensive horse at $1.25-million, and Tapit (Pulpit) who had the third most expensive at $1.1-million. On a smaller scale, he’s also part of the extended family of Hip 295, whose fourth dam is A.P. Indy’s granddam Lassie Dear (Buckpasser). That colt sold for $950,000 to be the sixth most expensive of the sale.

Colts vs. Fillies – It’s not a surprise that colts usually take over the top of the leaderboard at sales like this, but that was very obvious here. At the Fasig-Tipton sale a few weeks ago, the 11 horses to sell for the top 10 prices (two tied at $550,000) were fairly even with six colts and five fillies selling in that range but that wasn’t the case here. Only two fillies made it in the top 10 here BUT one of those was the sales topper and sold for nearly $500,000 more than the second highest priced horse (a colt) so it wasn’t a total win for the boys in that battle.

Forestry – Another sire we won’t see much of at sales like this is Forestry (Storm Cat), who stayed in South America after a shuttle season a few years ago. But while he may not have had any 2-year-olds in this sale, he did play a big part as a broodmare sire here. Two colts by his daughters sold for a combined $2.05-million to be the third and fourth most expensive horses sold.

OXO Equine LLC – Lawrence Best’s OXO Equine made a big splash at Fasig-Tipton early in the month when buying two of the three most expensive horses in that sale. This sale Best didn’t go to that level but he did buy the second and third most expensive horses in the sale. First appearing on the scene at Keeneland September last year, Best has spent $4.75-million on four 2-year-olds this year between the Fasig-Tipton and OBS 2-year-old sales.

Union Rags
Wide Variety of Sires – There have been complaints in recent years that the sire pool is fairly small when you’re looking for a sire to get you a big commercial horse but that wasn’t the case at this sale. The top 15 horses were sired by 13 different sires standing from fees of $20,000 (Congrats) to $300,000 (Tapit). Second-crop sire Union Rags (Dixie Union) and leading sire Tapit were the only two horses who had more than one horse (two each) sell for $775,000 or more at this sale.

Peter Miller – Peter Miller led all buyers by numbers with eight tickets signed over the two days. None of those purchases were bought for more than five figures with his most expensive being a $75,000 New Year’s Day (Street Cry) colt. His cheapest was a $22,000 Violence filly out of a stakes winning Lion Heart mare.

McKathan Bros – This consignor may be most known for their work breaking American Pharoah (Pioneerof the Nile) but at this sale they get recognition for consigning the sale topper. Of the four they sent through the ring, two of them sold for a combined $1.95-million while the other two who didn't sell brought decent final bids at $140,000 and $145,000 respectively.

Eddie Woods – The consignor with the most horses in the top 15 was Eddie Woods, who sold three in that price range with one more in the top 20. Overall, the consignment sold 23 horses with only one RNAing and not finding a private buyer after going through the ring. The most expensive was a Pioneerof the Nile colt from the family of Grade 1 winner Outwork (Uncle Mo) and multiple graded stakes winner Cairo Prince (Pioneerof the Nile) who sold for $1-million to Robert and Lawana Low.

Missing Buyers – There was plenty of action at the sale but there were some missing names on the buyers’ end. Names like Al Shaqab Racing, Bob Baffert, China Horse Club, and M.V. Magnier didn’t sign tickets either alone or in partnership. WinStar Farm, which partnered up with some of the names listed last year to buy four horses and one on its own, only signed the ticket for one horse at this sale as well. But on the flip side of the coin, at least 184 buyers took home new horses at this year’s sale, showing that there is still a nice collection of owners ready to buy 2-year-olds.

Saturday, March 11, 2017

Keeping it In the Family: Sire Lines of March's World's Best Racehorse Rankings

While there is a long time until the final International Federation of Horseracing Authorities' (IFHA) Longines World’s Best Racehorse Rankings of the year, the first edition of 2017 was a win for the Mr. Prospector sire line with two racehorses sired by his grandson and great-grandson tied for the top spot.

Released on Thursday, it was no surprise to see Arrogate (Unbridled’s Song) and Winx (Street Cry) both earning ratings of 127, four points ahead of third placed Hartnell (Authorized). In all, six of the 28 ranked horses trace back to Mr. Prospector through their sires while seven of the ranked horses’ broodmare sires also come from that particular sire line. Hussonet (Mr. Prospector) proved to be the most popular close link through broodmare sires with two of the ranked racehorses out of Hussonet mares.

Winx (IFHA/©bradleyphotos.com.au)
Unbridled’s Song was the only Mr. Prospector descendant to both sire a ranked horse and the dam of another ranked horse with his daughter’s Sixties Song (Sixties Icon) tied for fifth on a 119 rating while his sire Unbridled was also the great-grandsire of another ranked horse in Midnight Storm, who is sired by Pioneerof the Nile (Empire Maker).

Mr. Prospector’s Forty Niner also earned the distinction of showing up both in the sire line and broodmare sire line of ranked horses with his grandson Trippi siring Trip to Heaven and son Distorted Humor siring Arrogate’s dam. Distorted Humor is also the grandsire of Hoppertunity (Any Given Saturday), giving that branch of the Mr. Prospector line three representatives in this month’s rankings.

Distorted Humor
Overall, ranked horses traced back to Mr. Prospector through eight different sons with Fappiano leading the way with three followed by Hussonet's two dams of ranked horses. Arrogate was the only ranked horse to trace back to Mr. Prospector through both his sire and broodmare sire.

Sixties Song is one of five ranked horses bred on the Northern Dancer/Mr. Prospector cross with those two sires mostly showing up in the fourth generations. Not surprisingly, Northern Dancer’s line is the most popular sire line in the rankings with 16 of the 28 ranked horses hailing from one of six of his sons.

By Galileo’s (Sadler’s Wells) son Sixties Icon, Sixties Song is one of three ranked horses by sons or grandsons of Sadler’s Wells (Northern Dancer). One other ranked horse is a grandson of Sadler’s Wells’ full brother Fairy King and another is a great grandson of Fairy King.

Northern Dancer also features prominently in the broodmare sire lines of ranked horses with 11 tracing back to him that way. While the Sadler’s Wells branch of that line accounts for two broodmare sires, it is through Danzig that it is strongest, with four horses produced by daughters of that line. Danzig is also responsible for eight of the horses by sires who trace back to Northern Dancer with Danzig’s influential son Danehill providing the link in five of the horses.

But Mr. Prospector and Northern Dancer can’t take credit for all the ranked horses. Hail to Reason has three ranked horses sired by great-grandsons in Hey Doc (Duporth), Makahiki (Deep Impact) and Neorealism (Neo Universe), with two coming from the Sunday Silence (Halo) branch of the line in Japan.

Sir Ivor is another one of those stallions who appears in the sire line of both a sire and a broodmare sire of ranked horses with his great-grandson siring Legal Eagle (Greys Inn) and another grandson siring the dam of Werther (Zabeel). Speak John (Prince John) doesn’t have any representation through the sires of ranked horses but two stallions from his line sired the dams of ranked horses, including Winx. In Reality also shares that distinction with great-grandson Bertrando (Sky Walker) siring the dam of Midnight Storm and grandson Cee’s Tizzy (Relaunch) siring the dam of Trip to Heaven.

Overall, the ranked horses come from 12 different sire lines through their sire or broodmare sire. Surprisingly, only six of the ranked horses trace back to the same sire line through both their sire and broodmare sire. Not surprisingly, most of those horses find Northern Dancer on both sides.

Interestingly with the lack of a large amount of diversity in the bloodlines, the ranked horses come from nine different countries. While you see a certain parts of a line showing up more in one region over another, it shows how specialized sire lines get when horses get to the upper echelons of the sport.


Ranked Horse (Sire)
Sire Line
Branch of Sireline (Son)
Arrogate (Unbridled’s Song)
Mr. Prospector
Fappiano (Unbridled)
Winx (Street Cry)
Mr. Prospector
Hartnell (Authorized)
Northern Dancer
Sadler’s Wells (Montjeu)
Satono Crown (Marju)
Northern Dancer
Try My Best
Amazing Kids (Falkirk)
Northern Dancer
Storm Bird (Storm Cat)
Black Heart Bart (Blackfriars)
Northern Dancer
Danzig (Danehill)
Chautauqua (Encosta De Lago)
Northern Dancer
Fairy King
Ertijaal (Oasis Dream)
Northern Dancer
Danzig (Green Desert)
Helene Paragon (Polan)
Blushing Groom
Rainbow Quest
Legal Eagle (Greys Inn)
Sir Ivor
Sir Tristram
Le Romain (Hard Spun)
Northern Dancer
Peniaphobia (Dandy Man)
Northern Dancer
Danzig (Danehill)
Sixties Song (Sixties Icon)
Northern Dancer
Sadler’s Wells (Galileo)
Trip To Heaven (Trippi)
Mr. Prospector
Forty Niner (End Sweep)
Werther (Tavistock)
Northern Dancer
Sadler’s Wells (Montjeu)
Whisky Baron(Manhattan Rain)
Northern Dancer
Fairy King
Blazing Speed (Dylan Thomas)
Northern Dancer
Danzig (Danehill)
Championship (Exceed and Excel)
Northern Dancer
Danzig (Danehill)
Extreme Choice (Not A Single Doubt)
Northern Dancer
Danzig (Danehill)
Hey Doc (Duporth)
Hail to Reason
Hoppertunity (Any Given Saturday)
Mr. Prospector
Forty Niner (Distorted Humor)
Joyful Trinity (Zanzibari)
Mr. Prospector
Smart Strike
Lucky Bubbles (Sebring)
Hail to Reason
Halo (Southern Halo)
Makahiki (Deep Impact)
Hail to Reason
Halo (Sunday Silence)
Malaguerra (Magnus)
Northern Dancer
Danzig (Danehill)
Midnight Storm (Pioneerof the Nile)
Mr. Prospector
Fappiano (Unbridled)
Neorealism (Neo Universe)
Hail to Reason
Halo (Sunday Silence)
Terravista (Captain Rio)
Northern Dancer


Thursday, March 9, 2017

Checking In On: High Priced OBS March Sale Graduates

In our second edition of this series, we look at the horses who sold at the Ocala Breeders’ Sales Company March Sale of Selected 2-Year-Olds in Training in 2015 and 2016 for $500,000 or more.

During those past two sales, 42 horses have sold in that price range with 37 of them making at least one start and a few others entered to race this weekend. The horses from these classes of the sale include Grade 1 winner Constellation (Bellamy Road), Group 2 winner Acapulco (Scat Daddy) and a few Triple Crown trail runners among others.

Read on to see what all 42 horses have been up to since leaving Ocala as 2-year-olds.
2016 March Sale of Selected 2-Year-Olds in Training
Formula One (Smart Strike x Glamorista – Unbridled’s Song) – The topper at this sale last year, Formula One was sold for $1.7-million to LEB. He debuted on Aug. 13, 2016 at Saratoga where he finished sixth to a future graded stakes winner in Good Samaritan (Harlan’s Holiday) on the turf. He returned to the grass for his second start on Jan. 22 of this year where he finished fifth as the favorite. He last worked on Feb. 11.

Monaco (Uncle Mo x Setareh – Sky Classic) – A $1.3-million purchase by Repole Stable and Coolmore, Monaco made his debut in Saratoga where he was sixth going six furlongs. Stretched out to 1 1/16 then one mile when he returned this year, Monaco first finished second before winning at a mile. In that mile race, he was still green but won by 12 lengths.  He has continued appearing regularly on the work tab since that victory.

Master Plan (Twirling Candy x Sage Mist – Henny Hughes) – Owned in partnership by Al Shaqab Racing, WinStar Farm and China Horse Club, Master Plan has shown a lot of talent to go with his $850,000 price tag. After finishing off-the-board in his first start, he broke his maiden by 2 ¼ lengths, was second in the Pulpit Stakes and won the OBS Championship by 2 ½ lengths. According to the Al Shaqab’s U.S. Racing Manager Bradley Weisbord, Master Plan will make his next start in the UAE Derby.

Radio Silence (War Front x Maryfield – Elusive Quality) – Racing in Ireland, this $675,000 purchase has run with some of the best 2-year-olds in Europe. He broke his maiden by two lengths at Leopardstown and was second to champion Churchill (Galileo) in the Group 2 Galileo European Breeders Fund Futurity Stakes in August.
Undulated (Curlin x Polly Alexander – Foxhound) – Bought by MMG Stables for $625,000, Undulated broke his maiden at first asking and hasn’t finished off the board since. He was second next out in the Laurel Futurity, won the Swynford Stakes at Woodbine then returned to Laurel Park to finish third in the Marylander Stakes. He’s made back $103,263 in those four starts and hasn’t yet worked or raced as a 3-year-old.

Floroplus (City Zip x Cap’s Legacy – Stroll) – A $585,000 purchase, Floroplus broke his maiden in his first start by a neck. A month later, the colt finished fifth in an allowance optional claiming race on Oct. 30 at Churchill Downs. Floroplus hasn’t raced since that start and last worked on Jan. 29, 2017.

Third Day (Bernardini x Onebadkitty – Street Cry) – Another stakes horse from this sale last year, the $575,000 Third Day has won both his starts. His latest was the Just One More Stakes, which he won by a neck on Feb. 8. He currently races for the partnership of Spendthrift Farm and Town and Country Racing. Trainer Todd Pletcher told TVG after his last win that he will next be headed for a Kentucky Derby prep race and he has been working regularly since that win.


Beautiful Princess (Giant’s Causeway x Empire West – Empire Maker) – Originally trained by Bob Baffert for Kaleem Shah, Beautiful Princess moved to trainer Doug O’Neill days after finishing seventh in her debut. She finished third for O’Neill in her second outing before an 11th place finish in her third start on March 4.

Kidmon (Lemon Drop Kid x Motokiks – Storm Cat) – Bought by LEB, Kidmon had not yet raced but worked a few times in January. He hasn’t been on the tab since Jan. 26, however.
Perfect Partner (Curlin x Stars Indy Skies – A.P. Indy) – A $550,000 purchase, Perfect Partner has not yet raced but he has been working at Palm Meadows Training Center since late January.

Takeoff (Arch x Frisk Her – Officer) – Breaking his maiden impressively in his third start, Takeoff was sent right to the stakes level in the Grade 3 LeComte Stakes. That move proved to be a good one by trainer Mark Casse with Takeoff finishing third in the race. He hasn’t raced since then.

Bird Orr Brady (Kantharos x Gracious Assault – Glitterman) – The only gelding in this price range from last year’s sale, Bird Orr Brady was a pinhooking success. The 3-year-old was a $30,000 yearling then hammered for $550,000 at this sale less than a year later. He hasn’t yet raced but is working regularly at Santa Anita and is entered for a maiden at Santa Anita on March 11.

Finest (Scat Daddy x Boldy’s Reflection – Bold Ruckus) – A filly bought by Coolmore, Finest is trained by Wesley Ward. The filly has only had one start, finishing sixth at Fair Grounds on Dec. 8, 2016.

Scat Daddy
Tolstoy (Uncle Mo x Free Fee Lady – Victory Gallop) – Bought by WinStar Farm and China Horse Club for $535,000, Tolstoy hasn’t yet started but has been breezing regularly at Palm Beach Downs.

Silver Dust (Tapit x Filare l’Oro – Hard Spun) – A maiden winner by 3 ½ lengths at Churchill Downs on Nov. 20, Silver Dust immediately stepped into the Kentucky Derby trail in his next start. While not a top result, Silver Dust did finish fourth in the Grade 3 Southwest Stakes to take home a $25,000 paycheck.

Prompter (Into Mischief x Narrate – Medaglia d’Oro) - A $500,000 purchase by Spendthrift Farm, Prompter hasn’t raced and hasn’t had any recent works according to Equibase.

2015 March Sale of Selected 2-Year-Olds in Training
Zero Hour (Bernardini x Misty Hour – Miswaki) – The $1.4-million sales topper here two years ago when Live Oak Plantation signed the ticket, Zero Hour broke his maiden in his second start on Woodbine’s all weather track by 6 ¼ lengths in August of last year. His last start was a fifth place finish in the Grade 3 Ontario Derby. He hasn’t had any works in the last 60 days.

Freedom Tower (Broken Vow x Tale of the South – Tale of the Cat) – $950,000 purchase Freedom Tower broke his maiden last out by half a length for trainer and co-owner Linda Rice, Irish Smith Stable and Lady Sheila Stable. 

Hoffenheim (Midnight Lute x Circumstance – Vindication) – While it took a while for Hoffenheim to break his maiden - six starts in fact – the now-gelded son of Midnight Lute has never finished off the board. Hoffenheim broke his maiden on March 6, 2016 at Santa Anita, had a long layoff before returning in December when he won again, then had a trainer change. Since that trainer change, Hoffenheim has finished third in another allowance optional claimer event and was gelded. He returned to the work tab on March 3, four weeks after his last race.

Paschali (Bernardini x Pure Clan – Pure Prize) - The most expensive filly of this edition of the sale when bringing $850,000, Paschali is owned by Lael Stables and Three Chimneys Farm, who bred the filly then bought back into her after Lael signed the ticket. Paschali has raced three times with three off-the-board performances. She hasn’t raced since July 2016 and has no current works.

Freemark (Smart Strike x Carolyn’s Cat – Forestry) – Another expensive purchase who has been gelded since an $800,000 check was signed for him, Freemark was bought at this sale by Coolmore and Stonestreet Stables but currently runs for Anthony Barbanti. The gelding has nine on-the-board finishes in 13 starts but has not yet won a race, though he has finished second six times. He was purchased privately from Coolmore and Stonestreet in May of last year before being claimed for $20,000 in October. He last raced on Feb. 21 where he was again second.

Constellation (Bellamy Road x For Royalty – Not for Love) – The first Grade 1 winner of this group, the $800,000 paid for Constellation paid off. The filly was Grade 1 and Grade 2 placed as a 2-year-old, won three stakes after that and broke through last year at the Grade 1 level at Santa Anita in the La Brea Stakes. She was most recently second in the Grade 3 Las Flores Stakes on March 5. She also proved to be a smart pinhook for Northwest Stud, who paid $155,000 for her as a yearling and sold her six months later for that $800,000.


Conquest Windycity (Tiznow x Lasting Appeal – A.P. Indy) – One of those horses from the now-defunct Conquest Stables barn, Conquest Windycity ran well for Conquest, finishing fourth in the Grade 3 Iroquois before breaking his maiden at Keeneland. While he was on the Kentucky Derby trail for two starts, he never ran in the Derby, instead finishing third in the James W. Murphy Stakes on the Preakness undercard. Sold for $65,000 at the Conquest dispersal, Conquest Windycity has raced once for his new owners, finishing second in an allowance optional claiming race on Feb. 22.

Acapulco (Scat Daddy x Global Finance – End Sweep) – One of the more well-known horses from this sale, Acapulco got the ball rolling quickly after Coolmore paid $750,000 for her and sent her to Wesley Ward. The filly was third in a Churchill maiden in May, shipped to England for the Grade 2 Queen Mary Stakes at Royal Ascot, which she won by a length and a half over 19 other horses. In an ambitious move, she then took on her elders (as a 2-year-old) in the Grade 1 Coolmore Nunthorphe Stakes where she finished second and ended her year. She only made three starts last year, with two wins (including a stakes). She was transferred to Aidan O’Brien this year and is aiming for a few big races in Europe early this season after being bred to Galileo (Sadler’s Wells).

Take Charge Niki (Congrats x Christie Village – Deputy Minister) – Out of a half-sister to Take Charge Lady (Dehere), Take Charge Niki broke her maiden on New Year’s Day of this year in her fourth try. She was fifth in an allowance last month and is currently entered for an Allowance Optional Claiming race on March 12.

Conquest Superstar (Uncle Mo x Being Anna – Aldebaran) – A $725,000 purchase from Uncle Mo’s first crop, Conquest Superstar broke his maiden first out in April last year at Keeneland by 1 ¼ lengths. He then finished fifth in a Belmont Park Allowance Optional Claiming race in May before taking a long break. Sold in the Conquest Stables dispersal in November for $185,000, Conquest Superstar has not yet started for his new connections.

Gametown (Street Sense x Czechers – Indian Charlie) – Second in two maiden races in August and September of his 2-year-old year, Gametown then ran in the Grade 1 Claiborne Breeders’ Future at Keeneland where he finished ninth. After a 13 month break, Gametown went through the ring at the Keeneland November Breeding Stock sale where he was purchased by Craig Smith for $2,500.

Moon King (Malibu Moon x Goldilock’s Cat – Seeking the Gold) – Breaking his maiden in his fourth start in April 2016 at Keeneland, Moon King was then second in a Churchill Downs Allowance Optional Claiming race. After finishing 10th in the LARC Sir Barton Stakes in May, he was sold for $95,000 at the Fasig-Tipton Horses of Racing Age Sale to Highfield Investment Group. Moon King was fifth in the Grade 3 British Columbia Derby two starts later and ran in two allowances after that. He hasn’t raced since November and has no current works.

Elfin Cove (Adios Charlie x Siren Cove – Montbrook) – Racing in Japan, this filly has won three of her 11 starts with two other on-the-board finishes. She was first in the Shukugawa Tokubetsu in December and third in the Shoryu Stakes last March. Her first run of this year came on January 28 when she was 10th in the Kawaramachi Stakes.

The Ref (Distorted Humor x Dance Quietly – A.P. Indy) – A $650,000 purchase at this sale, The Ref has made 17 starts so far in his career with his first win coming in a maiden claimer in April 2016 after seven starts. He was claimed in his second start for $12,500 and hasn’t been claimed since, though he’s run in claiming races for that tag in many of his starts. Overall, he has two wins and five other on-the-board finishes.

Distorted Humor
Les Inities (Bernardini x Bohemian Lady – Carson City) – Another Japanese runner, Les Inities has raced 12 times with one win in her career. Most of her success came near the end of last year when she was third in three starts and broke her maiden, the first times she had been on the board in her career. The filly hasn’t raced since Nov. 9, 2016.

Uptown Twirl (Twirling Candy x Sambuca Classica – Cat Thief) – Uptown Twirl is one of those horses who just gets more expensive every time she goes through the ring, partially because she’s a half-sister to champion Classic Empire. An $110,000 yearling, she was sold at this sale for $630,000, won four of her nine races, including two stakes then went through the ring again at Keeneland last year where she sold for $1.075-million at the November Breeding Stock Sale. She hasn’t raced or worked since so odds are she’s being bred this year.

Conquest See Ya (Adios Charlie x Unlimited Pleasure – Valid Appeal) – A $600,000 2-year-old, Conquest See Ya hit the track as a 3-year-old and broke his maiden by three quarters of a length in his second start. The colt was then second in the Paradise Creek Stakes at Belmont Park and won another race three starts later at Woodbine. He was sold for $70,000 to Matthew Schera at the Conquest Stables dispersal during the Keeneland November sale and has raced twice for that owner this year, last time out finishing third in February.

River Dell (Arch x Rebuke – Carson City) – River Dell has only won one race but has been a fairly consistent performer to bring home $90,774 for West Point Thoroughbreds and Robert Masiello. He finished fourth in the Grade 2 Nashua Stakes as a 2-year-old and has been fourth or better in five of his seven starts so far. He last raced on Jan. 8 when finishing ninth in an allowance and has worked out two times since that start.

Agronomy (Sidney’s Candy x Broadway Hennessey – Hennessy) – A $560,000 2-year-old purchase, Agronomy has started 10 times with only one on-the-board finish and no victories. The gelding last raced on Nov. 18, 2016 and has no recent workouts.

Dixie Runner (Flatter x Dixie Crisp – Dixieland Band) – Owned by Robert LaPenta, Bridlewood Farm and Nantucket Thoroughbred Partners, Dixie Runner started out racing for LaPenta, Bridlewood and Sheep Pond Partners before Nantucket replaced Sheep Pond in the ownership. Dixie Runner was second in his debut, won in his third start and tried a stakes in his next out when he was sixth. Since then, he has been running in allowance company with one win and two thirds from six starts since the stakes race. His last race was on Feb. 11, 2017 and he is currently working out regularly.

Tristan’s Trilogy (Scat Daddy x Deadly Diva – Unbridled’s Song) – Trained by Pete Miller for Rockingham Ranch, Tristan’s Trilogy took a while to find the winner’s circle, winning in his eighth start. That win came in April of 2016 with the colt then finishing second in the Singletary Stakes to Arcature (Archarcharch). He finished 10th in two allowance races after that and was given a long layoff. He has two recorded works on Equibase in February at the moment but hasn’t worked since Feb. 16.

Conquest City Girl (City Zip x Woodsmoke – Langfuhr) – Another Conquest Stable buy at this sale, Conquest City Girl started out her career in stakes races where she was stakes placed in the Shady Well Stakes at Woodbine. Dropping back to maiden level, she broke he maiden four starts later, earned another stakes placing in the Alywow Stakes and a second in a Woodbine allowance race. After an eighth in the Ontario Colleen Stakes, she was sold in the Conquest dispersal for $240,000 to Tommy Town Thoroughbreds. She won in her second out for those connections and is currently entered to race on March 10.

Conquest Mystique (Kitten’s Joy x Granny Broughton – Sky Mesa) – Conquest Mystique hasn’t done much racing in his career. After finishing fourth in his debut as a 2-year-old, he took off nearly a year, was third in a Woodbine maiden then broke through in his third start a month later. He was sold in the Conquest dispersal for $70,000 to Riverside Bloodstock and has been working regularly since mid-February at Skylight Training Center.

Speight Swiftly (Speightstown x Dance Swiftly – Danzing) – Trained by Mark Casse for Live Oak Plantation, Speight Swiftly has not yet made a start. However, the colt has been working regularly at Palm Meadows Training Center and won his debut on March 10 at Gulfstream Park.

Play Big (Twirling Candy x Gowestforgold – Java Gold) – Another gelding from this class, Play Big has raced 10 times with one on-the-board finish. He has spent his last five races at the maiden claiming level but hasn’t raced since Jan. 5 and has no works on Equibase at the moment.