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Updated: 22 hours 52 min ago

Major General Earns His Stripes in Iroquois

Sat, 2021-09-18 22:30

Major General took his record to two-for-two with a gutsy score in the GIII Iroquois S. at Churchill Downs Saturday, earning a spot in the gate for the GI Breeders' Cup Juvenile. The $420,000 KEESEP buy went gate to wire in his 6 1/2-panel unveiling at Saratoga Aug. 21 and was given a 9-2 chance for this step up in class. The bay raced off the rail in mid-pack as a pair of longshots battled through an opening quarter in :23.82. Moving into a joint fourth as the half went in :47.89, Major General charged to the lead alongside 'TDN Rising Star' Stellar Tap (Tapit) approaching the far turn and they entered the stretch in unison. A brief battled ensued, but Stellar Tap threw in the towel halfway home and a host of pursuers rallied up to take his place, but Major General held on for a narrow victory over Tough to Tame. Stellar Tap's jockey Ricardo Santana claimed foul for some bumping in the lane, but the result was left as is.

“You're always confident whenever Todd [Pletcher] puts you on a horse,” Javier Castellano said. “His team does a great job and this horse is just learning. He seemed to enjoy going two turns and when the other horses got to him in the stretch he started to re-break.”

Pedigree Notes:
Major General is the eighth graded and 17th black-type winner overall for WinStar stallion Constitution, whose third crop is two this year. Circular Road Breeders bred both Major General and his dam, the unraced No Mo Lemons, but sold them both in 2020. Major General went as a Keeneland January short yearling for $265,000 to Northface Bloodstock and was successfully pinhooked into a $420,000 September yearling, where Maverick Racing took him home. No Mo Lemons was hammered for $70,000 by Titletown Racing Stables at the Keeneland November sale and her now-yearling colt by Always Dreaming brought $95,000 at the same sale from Steven W. Young. No Mo Lemons didn't produce a 2021 foal, but was bred to Kantharos for next term. A number of stakes winners trace to the grandam of No Mo Lemons, a half-sister to GISW Well Chosen (Deputy Minister), including GISW Leofric (Candy Ride {Arg}) and MGSW & GISP Multiple Choice (Mt. Livermore). Uncle Mo, with just seven crops to race himself, is young for a broodmare sire, but Major General counts as the third stakes winner out of his daughters.

Saturday, Churchill Downs
IROQUOIS S.-GIII, $300,000, Churchill Downs, 9-18, 2yo, 1 1/16m, 1:44.88, ft.
1–MAJOR GENERAL, 118, c, 2, by Constitution
               1st Dam: No Mo Lemons, by Uncle Mo
               2nd Dam: Lemon Lady, by Lemon Drop Kid
               3rd Dam: Lady of Choice, by Storm Bird
1ST BLACK TYPE WIN, 1ST GRADED STAKES WIN. ($265,000
Ylg '20 KEEJAN; $420,000 Ylg '20 KEESEP). O-WinStar Farm
LLC & Siena Farm LLC; B-Circular Road Breeders (KY); T-Todd
Pletcher; J-Javier Castellano. $177,525. Lifetime Record:
2-2-0-0, $232,525. Werk Nick Rating: A+. Click for the
eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree.
2–Tough to Tame, 118, c, 2, Speightster–She'sa Tough Tiger,
by Tiger Ridge. ($75,000 2yo '21 OBSAPR). O-Rittdiculous
Gazmanian Stables; B-Elizabeth H. Muirhead (KY);
T-Christopher Davis. $57,750.
3–Red Knobs, 118, c, 2, Union Rags–Hokey Okey, by Lonhro
(Aus). ($75,000 Ylg '20 KEESEP). O-Jim Bakke & Gerald
Isbister; B-Caldara Farm Inc. & Flaxman Holdings Limited
(KY); T-Dale L. Romans. $28,875.
Margins: NK, 3/4, HF. Odds: 4.90, 37.30, 29.70.
Also Ran: Bourbon Heist, Stellar Tap, Guntown, Strike Hard, Husband Material, Roger McQueen, Magnolia Midnight. Scratched: Lucky Boss.
Click for the Equibase.com chart, the TJCIS.com PPs, or the free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree. VIDEO, sponsored by TVG.

The post Major General Earns His Stripes in Iroquois appeared first on TDN | Thoroughbred Daily News | Horse Racing News, Results and Video | Thoroughbred Breeding and Auctions.

Connect Filly Romps in Pocahontas

Sat, 2021-09-18 22:00

Hidden Connection (f, 2, Connect–C J's Gal, by Awesome Again) stalked and pounced her way to a dominating victory in the 'Win and You're In' GIII Pocahontas S. at Churchill Downs Saturday evening. Mama Rina (Gormley) was second; Goddess of Fire (Mineshaft) was third.

The 9-5 favorite got over from her outside draw and was three wide rounding the clubhouse turn. She found an ideal spot to press the early leader from second through fractions of :24.26 and :48.62. She took over within her own restraint approaching the quarter pole and put on a show down the stretch in her two-turn debut to win by an eye-catching 9 1/4 lengths, setting a new stakes record.

“She was working at Keeneland this spring before we went to Colonial,” said trainer Bret Calhoun. “When she was working there I thought she could be special. Then we went to Colonial and she won so impressively on debut. She didn't have as much experience as some of the horses in this race but she backed up that win very well. If she comes out of things OK you'd have to think she's on to the Breeders' Cup.”

Hidden Connection, a flashy runaway debut winner with a strong 84 Beyer Speed Figure stopping the timer in 1:02 1/5 going 5 1/2 furlongs at Colonial Aug. 17, is the first stakes winner for her freshman sire (by Curlin). Black Type Thoroughbreds joined the ownership line following her debut romp for Hidden Brook Farm.

The final time for 1 1/16 miles for the Pocahontas was 1:43.78.

Pedigree Notes:

Hidden Connection is the first black-type winner for her freshman sire, who stands at Lane's End near Versailles in Central Kentucky. Winner of the 2016 GI Cigar Mile, Connect is a son of Curlin and has 120 current 2-year-olds. Twelve are winners to date, with Queen Camilla and Kneesnhips joining Hidden Connection as stakes horses, but only the latter is undefeated with a graded win on her CV. The winner's dam has a February-foaled weanling filly by Palace Malice and was bred back to Frosted. C J's Gal was sold as a sophomore at the 2016 Keeneland January sale, where she brought $9,500 from St. Simon Place, breeder of Hidden Connection. A daughter of Awesome Again, damsire of 85 stakes winners and who also counts the aforementioned Queen Camilla as an additional stakes horse out of one of his daughters, C J's Gal is out of a mare who is a half-sister to 2013 GI King's Bishop S. winner Capo Bastone (Street Boss).

Saturday, Churchill Downs
POCAHONTAS S.-GIII, $299,700, Churchill Downs, 9-18, 2yo, f, 1 1/16m, 1:43.78, ft.
1–HIDDEN CONNECTION, 118, f, 2, by Connect
               1st Dam: C J's Gal, by Awesome Again
               2nd Dam: C J's Leelee, by Mizzen Mast
               3rd Dam: Fight to Love, by Fit to Fight
1ST BLACK TYPE WIN, 1ST GRADED STAKES WIN. ($49,000
RNA Wlg '19 KEENOV; $40,000 Ylg '20 KEESEP; $55,000 RNA
2yo '21 OBSAPR; $85,000 2yo '21 OBSOPN). O-Hidden Brook
Farm & Black Type Thoroughbreds; B-St. Simon Place (KY);
T-W. Bret Calhoun; J-Reylu Gutierrez. $177,525. Lifetime
Record: 2-2-0-0, $207,525. Werk Nick Rating: A+. Click for
the eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree. *First SW for
freshman sire (by Curlin).
2–Mama Rina, 118, f, 2, Gormley–Honky Tonk Rose, by
Forest Wildcat. ($31,000 Ylg '20 KEEJAN; $65,000 Ylg '20
KEESEP). O-Harold Lerner LLC, AWC Stables, Scott K. Akman,
Nehoc Stables, Paul Braverman, & Magdalena Racing; B-Lee
McMillin, Randy Faulkner & Joe Travelsted (KY); T-Kenneth
McPeek. $57,750.
3–Goddess of Fire, 118, f, 2, Mineshaft–Feel That Fire, by
Lightnin N Thunder. O/B-Red Oak Stable (Brunetti) (KY);
T-Todd A. Pletcher. $28,875.
Margins: 9 1/4, NK, 1. Odds: 1.80, 30.70, 5.00.
Also Ran: Code for Success, Majestic d'Oro, Ontheonesandtwos, Miss Chamita, Kneesnhips, Maxine Machine, Lemieux. Scratched: Joyrunner.
Click for the Equibase.com chart, the TJCIS.com PPs, or the free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree. VIDEO, sponsored by TVG.

The post Connect Filly Romps in Pocahontas appeared first on TDN | Thoroughbred Daily News | Horse Racing News, Results and Video | Thoroughbred Breeding and Auctions.

Blitzkrieg Opener to Keeneland Book 3

Sat, 2021-09-18 21:26

LEXINGTON, KY – The Keeneland September Yearling Sale lost none of its momentum during a dark day Friday, returning with an opening Book 3 section that featured strong demand from start to finish in Lexington Saturday.

During the session, 269 head sold for $45,003,000. The session average was $167,297–up 53.46% from last year's Book 3 opener which was held amidst the uncertainty of the pre-vaccination pandemic–and the median increased 58.82% to $135,000. With just 92 horses reported not sold, the buy-back rate Saturday was 25.48%. It was 40.12% a year ago.

“I think the way people are landing on the same horses, people keep getting bumped and as they keep getting bumped, they still have money to spend,” said Chris Baker of Three Chimneys Farm, which sold two of Saturday's top four lots. “It's the nice ones you get rewarded for. For the buyers, there is not enough supply. So I think the money is still there for big numbers in this book. And the individuals are here, too.”

Through five sessions of the September sale, 889 yearlings have sold for $245,422,000. The average is $276,065 and the median is $200,000. The buy-back rate stands at 28.82%.

A filly by Curlin from the Eaton Sales consignment brought the day's highest price when selling for $800,000 to the bid of bloodstock agent Donato Lanni.

While Lanni continued to be active on behalf of the stallion-making partnership of SF Bloodstock/Starlight/Madaket, he purchased this filly on behalf of owners Karl and Cathi Glassman.

“It's been really hard to buy what you want,” Lanni said. “It's so competitive. It's so, so strong. The good ones bring that and more. Book 1, 2 and 3 have been strong. It's just carried over from the 2-year-old sales.”

Three Chimneys' standout freshman sire Gun Runner was represented by three of Saturday's top five lots, with trainer Kelsey Danner purchasing the stallion's top offering of the day when going to $775,000 on behalf of John Williams. The yearling was consigned by Denali Stud on behalf of Three Chimneys.

“I think that's the record for us in Book 3,” Denali's Conrad Bandoroff said of the price. “I can't think of us ever having a better result than that. The market is strong. I think what is amazing is that this is almost entirely a domestic market. The entire sale has been. We are missing some of the foreign participation that we are used to seeing, especially on some bigger ticket items. But the strength of the domestic market has been fantastic and I think there is evidence of that today.”

Jacob West, who made eight purchases Saturday on behalf of Mike Repole and St. Elias, expects the fireworks to continue as the sale heads into its second week.

“It's going to be this way through–you could have eight books–if they are good horses they are going to bring good money,” West said. “If they are deemed good by the public, they will bring a lot of money. So it's not stopping. You're going to see high-priced horses in Book 4, you might even see something in Book 5 if the right horse is there for everybody. I think really what you are going to see now is a lot of the pinhookers getting involved. I don't think they were able to buy anything in Book 1 and 2. I know a lot of them are still here and they are probably a little frustrated that they haven't been able to get what they want. They are here to shop.”

The Keeneland September sale continues through Friday with sessions beginning daily at 10 a.m.

 

Curlin Filly Lights Up Keeneland

As afternoon marched into evening Saturday at Keeneland, bloodstock agent Donato Lanni outlasted Jacob West to land a filly by Curlin (hip 1455) for a session-topping $800,000 on behalf of Karl and Cathi Glassman. The yearling was consigned by Eaton Sales on behalf of her breeder, Breeze Easy.

“I really wanted this filly,” Lanni said. “We have been outbid, like everybody else in this sale. She's a well-bred filly with sire power and pedigree and she was just amazing out there. We've just been getting outbid. I am so happy they let me buy her and they didn't make me stop. We've been stopping all week and they stuck in there and got her.”

The filly is out of graded placed Divine Elegance, a daughter of multiple graded winner Classic Elegance (Carson City).

Breeze Easy purchased Divine Elegance, in foal to Tapit, for $750,000 at the 2018 Fasig-Tipton November sale.

“We're very happy with that result,” Breeze Easy's Mike Hall said. “We loved the filly and we would have been happy if she hadn't sold. We are trying to build a breeding operation along with our racing operation. We feel like you have to sell some good horses to keep our operation going.”

Breeze Easy has enjoyed racetrack success with the likes of Imprimis, Four Wheel Drive, Light Night Pow Wow and Easy Time carrying the operation's colors to graded stakes success in North America and Shang Shang Shang earning Royal Ascot glory in the 2018 G2 Norfolk S.

“We go into it with the idea that we keep a few horses to race,” Hall said of the balance between selling and racing their homebreds. “We have to sell some of the better ones to build our breeding reputation. I think it was a good move for us to sell that filly. She was one of our favorite fillies. And I am very happy with that result.”

Of the filly's placement in Book 3, Hall added, “We debated between Book 2 and Book 3, but felt she could be a standout in Book 3 and that's why we did it.”

 

Three Chimneys Cashes in on Gun Runner Yearlings

Three Chimneys Farm and its streaking freshman sire Gun Runner had top billing during Saturday's session of the Keeneland September sale, with trainer Kelsey Danner, bidding for John Williams's J&J Stables, signing the ticket at $775,000 to secure a colt (hip 1254) from the Denali Stud consignment and bloodstock agent Jacob West going to $675,000 for a colt (hip 1266) from the Taylor Made Sales consignment. Through the Gainesway consignment, Three Chimneys also sold a filly by Gun Runner (hip 1098) for $435,000 to the bid of Steve Carr.

“I think Gun Runner is doing all of the heavy lifting, for sure,” Three Chimneys' Chris Baker said. “Obviously, his racing performance is influencing the sales. There are some very nice individuals going through today and there aren't a lot of them in the sale. There is still a very strong appetite for them based on what they are doing on the track. It's just super encouraging to see and to be a part of.”

Hip 1254 is out of the unraced Sapucai (Indian Charlie), a daughter of graded winner Smart Surprise (Smart Strike) and a half-sister to Canadian champion Moonlit Promise (Malibu Moon). Three Chimneys purchased the mare for $625,000 at the 2013 Keeneland September sale.

“We raised the colt and we loved him,” Baker said of the chestnut yearling. “We would have loved to stay in on him, but when the market speaks that loudly, you let it go. He's a very, very nice colt, but he exceeded expectations regarding commercial value.”

Hip 1266 is out of Secret Jewel (Bernardini) and is a half-brother to Twenty Carat (Into Mischief). Secret Jewel is a half-sister to GI Breeders' Cup F/M Turf winner Shared Account, dam of GI Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf winner Sharing (Speightstown).

“It was a fairly similiar situation,” Baker said. “They were both big, strong good-moving colts, but different types. And he exceeded our expectations as well. We hope both colts continue to exceed expectations.”

From just his first crop to hit the racetrack, Gun Runner has already sired Grade I winners Gunite and Echo Zulu, as well as two other graded stakes winners.

“These two colts and the filly we sold first in the ring today, if we had known Gun Runner was going to be doing what he is doing, they would have been in Book 2, not Book 3. They were really Book 2 horses in Book 3 with where Gun Runner is today.”

Danner Gets Her Gun Runner

Trainer Kelsey Danner, bidding on behalf of John Williams's J&J Stables, went to $775,000 to acquire a colt by Gun Runner (hip 1254) Saturday at Keeneland.

“We expected it was going to go high,” Danner admitted. “Gun Runner is hot and this was a beautiful colt. He was good-sized, correct and athletic.”

Earlier in the session, Danner acquired a colt by Speightstown (hip 1158) on behalf of Williams for $200,000.

“We got this one and a colt by Speightstown earlier and he's done now,” Danner said.

The Florida-based J& Stables is the breeder of multiple Grade I winner and leading sprinter Jackie's Warrior (Maclean's Music).

“We are going for colts, route horses, that's what we are looking for,” Danner said of her shopping list for Williams. “He just wants Classic route horses. He sold some, so now he's buying some.”

Danner, the daughter of trainer Mark Danner, served stints as assistant to trainers Carl Nafzger, Ian Wilkes, Rusty Arnold and Wayne Catalano, before taking out her trainer's license in 2017. She won the Allied Forces S. at Belmont Friday with Smokin' Jay (Cairo Prince) for Crown's Way Racing LLC.

Out of Sapucai (Indian Charlie), hip 1158 was consigned by Denali Stud on behalf of his breeder, Three Chimneys Farm.

“He came into us in beautiful shape,” said Denali's Conrad Bandoroff. “The entire team at Three Chimneys did an amazing job. And he was a standout. He was a standout in our consignment and he was a standout in this book. He was incredibly popular and had all the right people on him. I am thrilled for Kelsey Danner. That's fantastic that she got him. We wish her the best of luck. That was a tremendous result.”

 

Columbiana Gets in on the City of Light Show

Homer Rader and Kathy Berkey sat back and watched as first-crop sire City of Light made the Keeneland September sale his personal coming out party during Books 1 and 2, all the while knowing they had a good colt of their own by the Lane's End stallion waiting for Book 3. And the yearling (hip 1393) did not disappoint, selling for $760,000 to the internet bid of the powerhouse SF Bloodstock/Starlight/Madaket partnership.

Columbiana was selling the colt on behalf of breeder Keith Abrahams. He is out of Azure Spring (Open Forum), a mare Berkey purchased for Abrahams for $32,000 at the 2006 Keeneland November sale.

“Keith Abrahams has been a longtime client of ours,” said Rader, who has been manager of Robert Ochocki's Columbiana Farm since 1995. “We bought the mare for him and raised all of those foals. Kathy does all his matings.”

The 21-year-old Azure Spring is also the dam of multiple graded stakes winner Selcourt (Tiz Wonderful).

Of the yearling, Rader added, “This guy just jumped through all the hoops. He was a very special colt. Once we got him here, we knew he was special because everybody liked him.”

Berkey agreed watching how well yearlings by City of Light had been selling all week gave her plenty of optimism heading into Saturday's session.

“We were thinking anywhere from $300,000 to a million,” Berkey said of expectations for the yearling. “We've done horse sales for so long, how do you know? You just hope two people hook up and they keep going. And you have no idea for a colt like this.”

Of the colt's placement in Book 3, Berkey explained, “We have had good success in the past with Book 3. I have a theory that if you let everybody fight over the ones in Book 1 and 2, when you get to Book 3, especially the first day of Book 3, and there aren't very many left that are very nice, then they really have to fight over them because they know they are running out. That was the theory. I think a good horse will sell anywhere.”

Through five sessions of the September sale, the stallion-making SF Bloodstock/Starlight/Madaket partnership has purchased 20 yearlings for $9,835,000. Hip 1393 was the group's second yearling purchase by City of Light. Also Saturday, Lanni signed for hip 1138 for $440,000.

“Everyone's gone made over City of Light,” Lanni said. “He was a hell of a racehorse. They all look like racehorses.”

 

West Stays Busy

Bloodstock agent Jacob West continued his frenetic buying pace on behalf of Mike Repole and Vinnie Viola's St Elias during the fifth session of the Keeneland September sale Saturday. West went to $675,000 to acquire a colt by Gun Runner (hip 1266) from the Taylor Made Sales Agency consignment and $500,000 to acquire a colt by Practical Joke (hip 1232) from the Nursery Place consignment.

West has already had success buying a son of Practical Joke at the September sale. The agent purchased a colt by the Coolmore stallion on behalf of the same partnership for $575,000 at last year's auction and the youngster went on to be 'TDN Rising Star' and graded stakes winner Wit.

The agent said he saw similarities between the two colts.

“This was the first horse I saw on inspections,” West said. “I texted Mike Repole, Todd Pletcher, Vinnie Viola, and their teams and I said, 'I found the next Wit,'” West said. “If his stripe went down to his nostril, it would have been the same horse. He just reminded me so much of him when we bought him here as a yearling. The whole team loved him. Todd saw him before he left town and gave him the thumbs up, Rory Babich and Monique Delk, everybody was all on board. Mike and Vinnie were going to go home with this one no matter what. We are just excited to get him. When the horses line up and check everybody's boxes on our team, Mike and Vinnie get pretty strong on them.”

Through five sessions, West has purchased 32 yearlings on behalf of the partnership of Repole and Viola for a total of $13,775,000. He made eight of those purchases Saturday for $2,450,000.

The bay yearling, bred by the Mayer family's Nursery Place, is out of the unraced Queen of the Realm (Empire Maker), a daughter of graded winner Seeking Regina (Seeking the Gold) and a half-sister to graded winner Seeking the Sky (Storm Cat), dam of Grade I winner Sahara Sky (Plesant Tap). The mare, purchased by Nursery Place for $80,000 at the 2013 Keeneland November sale, has also produced stakes-placed Seeking Toussaud (Tap Day).

“He has been a very, very special, straightforward colt from day one,” said Griffin Mayer. “My biggest fear was coming in here with a second-crop sire. Gun Runner has been setting the world on fire. Practical Joke has obviously done enough and in any normal crop, he'd be the man. But I was a little hesitant about coming in here. I knew we had a really nice colt and it all lined up. He got vetted over 20 times and was very popular and he showed himself well out here and did a beautiful job. We had a really good Book 2 and I thought if it could spill over, this colt could really light it up and he did.”

 

Lanigan Strikes Late for Gun Runner Filly

The Gainesway consignment opened the fifth session of the Keeneland September sale with a pricey daughter of Gun Runner and, as bidding neared its apex Saturday night, the consignment featured another filly by the freshman sire with David Lanigan, bidding on behalf of Scott Heider, purchasing hip 1495 for $675,000.

“We are delighted to get her,” Lanigan said. “She has a great temperament and I thought she was the pick of the day. Obviously, it's been hard to get fillies this week and she was our number one pick today.”

The yearling, out of Happy Mesa (Sky Mesa), was bred by Winchell Thoroughbreds. The Winchell family's operation purchased the mare for $300,000 at the 2018 Keeneland January sale. She produced a colt by Gun Runner this year.

Of the filly's final price, Lanigan said, “With the way the week has gone, I thought it would take about that much to get her.”

The filly is expected to be trained by Gun Runner's trainer Steve Asmussen, according to Lanigan.

The Heider family, which races in Europe and the U.S., has been represented by graded winners Zofelle (Ire) and Thoughtfully and, in partnership Grade I winner Speech.

“[Heider] has a lot of horses with Joseph O'Brien [in Ireland],” Lanigan said. “He has two yearlings going over there this year. And he just wanted to have a 2-year-old for America next year. So we are happy to get her.”

 

Practical Joke Filly Pays for Pugh

WinStar Farm's Elliott Walden struck early in Saturday's third session of the Keeneland September sale to secure a filly by Practical Joke (hip 1148) for $520,000 from the Hunter Valley Farm consignment.

“She was a big, strong filly and I loved her pedigree,” Walden, who signed in the name of WinStar's Maverick and Siena Farm, said. “There are some high-quality horses on the page, like Flashback. We are trying to get some fillies that can race and wind up in the broodmare band.”

Hip 1148 is out of the unraced Lucky Rose (Lookin at Lucky), a half-sister to Rhumb Line, dam of multiple Grade I winner Zazu (Tapit) and graded winner Flashback (Tapit).

The yearling was purchased by Peter Pugh, on behalf of Margaret Duprey's Cherry Knoll Farm, for $90,000 at last year's Keeneland November sale.

“She was just a classy-acting filly who showed the same every time you took her out,” Pugh said of the youngster's appeal last fall. “You never know when you buy one when they are that young where they are going to go. But she was just straightforward and she is by a horse that I believed in. Practical Joke has been so popular and she grew into a very nice filly. She just seemed to have a lot of class to her.”

Pugh admitted the filly's final price came as a pleasant surprise.

“We thought she was a $300,000 to $400,000 filly, something like that,” he said. “But if you get the right people who are interested in the same horse, sometimes that's the outcome. You never expect that type of result. That's what makes them so special when they happen.”

Also Saturday, Walden purchased a filly by Speightstown (hip 1291) for Maverick and Siena for $190,000.

Saturday's competitive bidding came as no surprise to Walden.

“It's going to be tough on the good ones,” Walden said.

 

Gun Runner Filly Kick Starts Book 3

A filly by hot freshman sire Gun Runner (hip 1098), the first horse through the ring Saturday morning, got the first session of Book 3 off to a quick start when selling for $435,000 to the bid of veterinarian Dr. Steve Carr, bidding on behalf of Bob Delaney's Late Night Stables.

“She looks very, very athletic,” Carr said of the yearling's appeal. “She's a medium-sized filly with a beautiful walk and a great presence to her. I think that's the reason she brought so much.”

The yearling is out of stakes-placed If Not for Her (Not for Love), a half-sister to stakes winner and multiple graded placed Awesome Flower (Flower Alley). Her third dam is Well Dressed (Notebook), dam of G1 Dubai World Cup winner Well Armed.

She was consigned by Gainesway on behalf of breeder Three Chimneys Farm, which purchased If Not For Her for $360,000 at the 2017 Keeneland November sale.

Carr serves as racing manager for Centennial Farms, while also purchasing horses on behalf of clients related to that operation.

Of hip 1098's freshman sire, Carr said, “Gun Runner is great. We were hoping that our stallion Unified might be among the leading freshman sires, and he is, but Gun Runner has been great.”

In his own name, Delaney has campaigned stakes winner Five Star Rampage (Quality Road) and stakes-placed Lunar Gaze (Malibu Moon). He was also a partner on Centennial Farms' Corinthian (Pulpit), winner of the 2007 Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile and GI Metropolitan H..

“He usually has two or three horses a year,” Carr said of Delaney. “In New York, he uses [trainer] Jimmy Jerkens. In the Midwest, he uses [trainer] Tom Amoss. This one will probably go to Jimmy Jerkens.”

The post Blitzkrieg Opener to Keeneland Book 3 appeared first on TDN | Thoroughbred Daily News | Horse Racing News, Results and Video | Thoroughbred Breeding and Auctions.

Yibir Goes Last to First in the Jockey Club Derby

Sat, 2021-09-18 19:29

European shipper Yibir carried the blue Godolphin silks to victory in the Jockey Club Derby Invitational S., securing a spot in the starting gate for the GI Breeders' Cup Turf in the process. Off a step slow, the chestnut caboosed the field early as Tango Tango Tango (Tourist) was pressed by fellow longshot Slicked Back through early splits of :25.37, :49.45 and 1:14.46. Still last on the backstretch run, Yibir swung out five wide turning for home and instantly inhaled his rivals, charging clear for a dominant victory.

“We've been very lucky this season,” said winning trainer Charlie Appleby's assistant Chris Connett. “Charlie's horses have been in great form and he has placed them really well. We had a big winner today and then a Grade I winner up in Canada [Walton Street in the Canadian International] just 15 minutes before, so it's a great time.”

He continued, “The ground wasn't so much of a problem. He can be a bit of a quirky character, so it was more of a matter of if he kept his head right. When they jumped out and wasn't really going a lick, I thought 'Oh, he's never done that before,', but Jamie [Spencer] gave him a great ride and coaxed him into it. Once he started to roll, he's got some engine on him.”

Winning two of his four starts as a juvenile, Yibir kicked off this term with a third in the G3 Classic Trial S. in April at Sandown. Fourth in the May 6 Dee S. at Chester, he was second in the Cocked Hat S. at Goodwood 15 days later and scored his first win of the season in the G3 Bahrain Trophy July 8 at Newmarket. Off the board in the July 29 G3 Gordon S. at Goodwood, the homebred won the G2 Voltigeur S. at York last out Aug. 18.

 

Pedigree Notes:

Yibir is one of 136 graded winners and 213 black-type victors by Dubawi. Stakes winner Rumh is also the dam of MG1SW Wild Illusion, SW Really Special and GSP Ceratonia. The daughter of German Highweight Royal Dubai (Ger)'s recent produce includes an unraced juvenile colt named Wild Crusade (GB) (Dubawi {Ire}) and a yearling colt by Golden Horn (GB).

JOCKEY CLUB DERBY INVITATIONAL S., $980,000, Belmont, 9-18, 3yo, 1 1/2mT, 2:26.23, fm.
1–YIBIR (GB), 122, g, 3, by Dubawi (Ire)
1st Dam: Rumh (Ger) (SW-Eng), by Monsun (Ger)
2nd Dam: Royal Dubai (Ger), by Dashing Blade (GB)
3rd Dam: Reem Dubai (Ire), by Nashwan
O-Godolphin LLC; B-Godolphin (GB); T-Charles Appleby;
J-Jamie P Spencer. $535,000. Lifetime Record: MGSW-Eng,
11-5-1-2, $815,580. *1/2 to Really Special (GB) (Shamardal),
SW-Eng, SP-UAE, $108,180; full to Wild Illusion (GB),
G1SW-Eng, MG1SW-Fr, GISP-USA, $1,590,217.
2–Soldier Rising (GB), 122, g, 3, Frankel (GB)–Sahrawi (Ger), by
Pivotal (GB). (240,000gns RNA Ylg '19 TATOCT). O-Madaket
Stables LLC, Michael Dubb, Morris Bailey, Wonder Stables &
Michael J Caruso; B-Dayton Investments Ltd (GB); T-Christophe
Clement. $185,000.
3–Slicked Back, 122, g, 3, Quality Road–Exuberante (GB), by
Galileo (Ire). ($275,000 Ylg '19 KEESEP). O-Jerry Marks Stables
LLC; B-Bonne Chance Farm LLC (KY); T-Brad H Cox. $100,000.
Margins: 2HF, NK, 2 3/4. Odds: 2.65, 2.35, 19.50.
Also Ran: Bolshoi Ballet (Ire), Tokyo Gold (Fr), Step Dancer, Tango Tango Tango. Scratched: Experienced. Click for the Equibase.com chart or VIDEO, sponsored by TVG.

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On ‘Cruise’ Control in the Woodbine Mile

Sat, 2021-09-18 18:28

Town Cruise (Town Prize) went from gate to wire in the GI Ricoh Woodbine Mile, springing an 8-1 upset and earning a spot in the gate for the GI Breeders' Cup Mile. Breaking on top from his rail draw, the gelding clicked off an opening quarter in :24.08 and a half-mile in :47.10. Showing the way into the lane, the bay kept on finding more in the lane, rolling clear to score. Space Traveller (GB) (Bated Breath {GB}) was the runner-up. This was the first graded stakes win for trainer, owner and co-breeder Brandon Greer. It was also the first Grade I for winning rider Daisuke Fukumoto.

“It feels a little surreal at the moment, but I'm absolutely thrilled with him,” said Greer. “This horse is amazing. I absolutely love him. I could see him digging in, that's something that he's been able to do very well this year. Dig in the late stages, even though he's been in the front. I found it a little difficult to believe right until the final sixteenth and then I can see the other horses just didn't have enough to catch up there.”

“This is fantastic,” said winning Fukumoto. “I am still in awe, it's an unbelievable feeling. Winning a Grade I is my dream, and I got a good horse this year so far. He's been good all year so far. For me, I am just crazy happy. I had pretty good confidence. I just knew for a shot I had to take [the] front. He went good, I took the lead, and wait and wait and he finished well.”

Town Cruise finished off 2020 with a pair of fourths at Woodbine, one on turf Oct. 25 and one on synthetic Nov. 20. Kicking off this term on a winning note in a grassy Woodbine allowance June 13, he captured an optional claimer on the local lawn July 4 and was run down by Olympic Runner last out after setting the pace in the GII King Edward S. Aug. 15.

 

Pedigree Notes:

Town Cruise is the first black-type winner and first graded scorer for his sire Town Prize, a son of Speightstown. He is the fifth Grade I scorer, 10th graded winner and 25 black-type victor out of a daughter of Candy Ride. Brandon and Terry Greer purchased his dam Candy Cruise for $4,267 at the 2007 Canadian September Yearling Sale. Town Cruise is her third foal and she has only produced two foals since, the unraced 3-year-old filly Seriously Sweet (Society's Chairman) and an unraced juvenile filly by Frac Daddy. She failed to get in foal to Frac Daddy in the two subsequent years and did not get in foal to Seattle Serenade last year.

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Shantisara Wears Down Higher Truth in the Jockey Club Oaks

Sat, 2021-09-18 18:18

Former French runner Shantisara won a gritty battle with stablemate Higher Truth to take the Jockey Club Oaks Invitational S. at Belmont Saturday. Higher Truth seized the early advantage with Shantisara glued to her outside hip in second through a :25.51 opening quarter and :51.70 half-mile. They continued in this manner with a pair of rivals hot on their heels through five-eighths in 1:18.12. Moving up to look her barnmate in the eye turning for home, Shantisara battled Higher Truth to the wire, forging clear in the final strides to score.

“Shantisara is an improving horse,” said trainer Chad Brown. “I just have to say that I'm so appreciative to the ownership group. The three groups that own her have been super patient and let me develop her at our pace and her pace. She's really shown some promise. We were even tempted to take a shot up at Saratoga. We talked about it and figured we would just go to Arlington. She needs a bit more seasoning over here and that's when we were able to hook her up with Flavien [Prat] and it just took the filly up another notch. I'm really proud of her development. She and Higher Truth both look like really promising horses going into next year.”

Shantisara started her career in France with trainer Frederic Rossi, winning two of her five starts there. Privately purchased by these connections and sent to Brown, she finished second in the Boiling Springs S. at Monmouth June 26 and captured Arlington's GIII Pucker Up S. next out Aug. 14.

 

Pedigree Notes:

Shantisara is one of four black-type winners for her sire Coulsty. She is the only runner produced by Kharana, who has only had three live foals and has not been bred since she had the winner. Her second dam is SW & GSP Khanata (Riverman).

Saturday, Belmont Park
JOCKEY CLUB OAKS INVITATIONAL S., $671,000, Belmont, 9-18, 3yo, f, 1 3/8mT, 2:16.91, fm.
1–SHANTISARA (IRE), 121, f, 3, by Coulsty (Ire)
               1st Dam: Kharana (Ire), by Dalakhani (Ire)
               2nd Dam: Khantala (Ire), by Zafonic
               3rd Dam: Khanata, by Riverman
(10,000gns 2yo '20 TATGBR). O-Michael Dubb, Madaket
Stables LLC & Robert V. LaPenta; B-Mr Oliver Donlon (IRE);
T-Chad C. Brown; J-Flavien Prat. $375,000. Lifetime Record:
GSW, 8-4-2-0, $488,108.
2--Higher Truth (Ire), 121, f, 3, Galileo (Ire)–Wannabe Better
(Ire), by Duke of Marmalade (Ire). (500,000gns Ylg '19
TATOCT). O-Michael J. Ryan, Jeff Drown, & Team Hanley;
B-Churchtown House Stud (IRE); T-Chad C. Brown.
$130,000.
3–Harajuku (Ire), 121, f, 3, Deep Impact (Jpn)–Phaenomena
(Ire), by Galileo (Ire). O-Flaxman Holdings, Ltd.; B-Flaxman
Stables Ireland Ltd (IRE); T-Andre Fabre. $70,000.
Margins: HF, 2, 1 1/4. Odds: 4.70, 2.20, 2.75.
Also Ran: Creative Flair (Ire), Madone, Baby Blythe. Scratched: Be Up.
Click for the Equibase.com chart or VIDEO, sponsored by TVG.

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Walton Street Airs in Canadian International

Sat, 2021-09-18 17:49

Walton Street (GB) (g, 7, Cape Cross {Ire}–Brom Felinity {Aus}, by Encosta de Lago {Aus}) sat in a perfect spot beneath Frankie Dettori chasing well-clear 41-1 longshot leader Primo Touch (Midas Touch {GB}) from second, crept closer on the far turn, gained command as they cornered for home and drew clear in the stretch to win for fun by 5 3/4 lengths in Saturday's GI Pattison Canadian International S. at Woodbine. Desert Encounter (Ire) (Halling) was second; Primo Touch stayed on for third. The 4-5 favorite completed 1 1/2 miles in 2:29.07.

The lightly raced 7-year-old gelding recorded his breakthrough first group success in the G2 Dubai City of Gold S. at Meydan Mar. 6. He was freshened off a fourth-place finish, beaten 3 1/2 lengths, in the G1 Dubai Sheema Classic Mar. 27 and entered off a third-place finish in the G1 Longines Grosser Preis von Berlin at Hoppegarten Aug. 8. His resume also includes a close second, beaten just a neck, in the 2019 G3 Prix Valparaiso Sporting Club at Deauville and a third-place finish in the 2018 G3 Geoffrey Freer S. at Newbury. He was receiving first-time Lasix in the Canadian International.

“I think to be honest it worked out perfectly how we thought it would,” said Alex Merriman, assistant to trainer Charlie Appleby. “I thought he would go forward and slot in. Frankie has his game plan, and turning in he always knew he was gonna kick on and he's gone and seen the race on nicely.”

He added, “He was in great form in Dubai and he ran a great one in Germany last time and he's put in a good performance here today. He's been with us a long time. He's a favourite in the yard and it was nice to see. He's a lovely horse.”

Dettori won his record fourth Canadian International following successes with Mutafaweq (2000), Sulamani (2004), and Joshua Tree (2010).

Pedigree Notes:

Walton Street is 14th Grade/Group 1 winner for the high-class Cape Cross (Ire). He is the top performer out of the Australian G2 Matriarch S. winner Brom Felinity (Aus) (Encosta De Lago {Aus}), a sister to G1 Australian Guineas victor Delago Brom (Aus). The mare has to date produced four winners in Australia, Britain, Dubai and France, including the six-time scorer Macavity (Aus) (Street Cry {Ire}). Grandam Brompton Cross (Aus) (El Qahira {NZ}) was, like her daughter, a Group 2 winner at Flemington, her biggest success coming in the Edward Manifold S. Brom Felinity was sold by Godolphin in July 2016 for 15,000gns to Ebor Bloodstock. The mare's current yearling, a colt by Oasis Dream (GB), fetched 34,000gns at last year's Tattersalls December Sale. She had a filly by Oasis Dream this year.

Saturday, Woodbine
PATTISON CANADIAN INTERNATIONAL S.-GI, C$608,400, Woodbine, 9-18, 3yo/up, 1 1/2mT, 2:29.07, gd.
1–WALTON STREET (GB), 126, g, 7, by Cape Cross (Ire)
1st Dam: Brom Felinity (Aus) (GSW-Aus, $441,177), by Encosta de Lago (Aus)
2nd Dam: Brompton Cross (Aus), by El Qahira
3rd Dam: Reiko (NZ), by Sir Godfrey (Fr)
1ST GRADE I WIN. O-Godolphin Racing LLC; B-Darley (GB); T-Charles Appleby; J-Lanfranco Dettori. C$360,000. Lifetime Record: GSW-UAE, SW & GSP-Eng, G1SP-Ger, GSP-Fr, 19-7-4-4, $962,153. Werk Nick Rating: B. Click for the  eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree.
2–Desert Encounter (Ire), 126, g, 9, Halling–La Chicana (Ire), by Invincible Spirit (Ire). (32,000gns Ylg '13 TAOCT). O-Abdulla Al Mansoori; B-Tally Ho Stud (IRE); T-David Simcock. C$120,000.
3–Primo Touch, 126, g, 6, Midas Touch (GB)–Mary's Derby Rose, by Sightseeing. ($2,000 Ylg '16 KEESEP). O-Kirk Sutherland; B-JEOG Racing LLC (KY); T-Harold Ladouceur. C$60,000.
Margins: 5 3/4, 4 3/4, 3/4. Odds: 0.85, 7.35, 41.35.
Also Ran: English Conqueror, Belichick, Corelli, Bluegrass Parkway, Fantasioso (Arg). Click for the Equibase.com chart, the TJCIS.com PPs or the free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree. VIDEO, sponsored by TVG.

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Barbara Banke Named First Female Chairman of Breeders’ Cup

Sat, 2021-09-18 16:52

The Breeders' Cup Board of Directors unanimously elected Barbara Banke as Board Chairman Friday night, the organization announced Saturday. Banke, the owner of Stonestreet Farms in Lexington and chairman of Jackson Family Wines, becomes the first woman to chair Breeders' Cup Limited and succeeds Fred Hertrich III.

Banke, whose will serve a two-year term as Chairman, was first elected as a Breeders' Cup Member in 2012 and was elected to the Board of Directors in 2014. Gainesway Farm's Antony Beck was elected for a two-year term as Vice Chairman.

“It is a great honor to be named Chairman of the Breeders' Cup Board of Directors, and I look forward to serving with my fellow Directors and Members in continuing the mission and vision of the Breeders' Cup World Championships in support of our nominators and our racing fans around the world,” said Banke. “I also congratulate our new Vice Chairman Antony Beck and greatly look forward to working together closely. In addition, I extend my warmest thanks to Fred Hertrich, who provided the Breeders' Cup with outstanding leadership throughout his tenure as Chairman. Fred's vision was key to several successful strategic initiatives over the last few years, including advancements in equine safety and integrity efforts, innovative approaches to improving the fan experience, and the successful running of the 2020 World Championships amid the COVID-19 pandemic. As Chairman, I look forward to working closely with stakeholders across the industry to ensure a bright future for Breeders' Cup Limited, the World Championships, and the sport of Thoroughbred racing.”

In addition to her tenure as a leading owner and commercial breeder, Banke is a steward of The Jockey Club (TJC) and a member of the Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association (TOBA), the National Racing Museum and Hall of Fame, and Keeneland's Advisory Board of Directors. Banke has also been a strong proponent of industry safety initiatives, including the Thoroughbred Safety Coalition and the passage of the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Act (HISA). Under her direction, Stonestreet has bred and raised horses that have won more than 120 stakes races. Among Stonestreet's top runners have been two-time Horse of the Year Curlin and additional Horse of Year Rachel Alexandra. Outside of the Thoroughbred industry, Banke began heading up Jackson Family Wines in 2011 and led the company as the nation's largest seller of premium wines. She is also a lawyer and a philanthropist.

“The Directors have made a very wise choice in electing Barbara Banke as the next Chair of the Breeders' Cup,” said Hertrich. “In her service as a Member and a Director, Barbara has instituted bold and innovative approaches to help strengthen and enhance the stature of the Breeders' Cup as 'the best of the best.' On a personal note, I have immensely enjoyed working with our industry stakeholders, our Members, and fellow Directors during my four years as Chairman.”

During his four years as Chairman, Hertrich led the Breeders' Cup in advancing equine safety and integrity efforts across the industry. As a founding member of the Thoroughbred Safety Coalition, Breeders' Cup implemented a ban on all race-day medications from the World Championships. Hertrich also led Breeders' Cup's strong support of the passage of the HISA by Congress in 2020.

Additionally, during Hertrich's tenure as Chairman, the Breeders' Cup World Championships purses and awards were increased to more than $31 million, and a 14th race (the Juvenile Turf Sprint) was added to the Championship roster. Breeders' Cup also set wagering and overall handle records during Hertrich's term. The highest all-sources handle in Breeders' Cup history ($174,628,986) was set in 2019 and record on-track Breeders' Cup handle ($24,181,317) was set at Del Mar in 2017. Hertrich also led the company in safely holding the 2020 World Championships at Keeneland amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Following Friday's election, the Board of 14 Breeders' Cup Directors is as follows: Barbara Banke, Stonestreet Farms (Chairman); Antony Beck, Gainesway Farm (Vice Chairman); Jimmy Bell, Godolphin America; Alan Cooper, Niarchos Family/Flaxman Holdings Ltd.; William S. Farish, Jr., Lane's End Farm; Drew Fleming, Breeders' Cup Limited (President), Eric Gustavson, Spendthrift Farm; Walker Hancock, Claiborne Farm; Fred Hertrich III, Watercress Farm; Bret Jones, Airdrie Stud; Clem Murphy, Coolmore Stud; Gavin Murphy, SF Bloodstock; Alex Solis II, Solis/Litt Bloodstock; and Elliott Walden, WinStar Farm.

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Gilbert Campbell Passes Away

Sat, 2021-09-18 14:56

Gilbert G. Campbell, who owned Stonehedge Farm South near Williston, FL with his wife Marilyn, died Thursday at Lowell General Hospital in Massachusetts following a brief illness. He was 91. In addition to his wife, he is survived by his son Gary and daughter Susan.

Longtime Stonehedge Farm South manager, Larry King, said “He loved his horses and we inspected them all every time they came down, and he would say, 'I can't wait to see these run.' Marilyn is very involved and loves the horses and his wishes, which he had told me many times, was for it to keep right on going forward.”

Leading Florida breeder and former president of the Florida Thoroughbred Breeders and Owners Association, Campbell was a multiple graded stakes-winning owner with 461 wins and earnings of more than $13 million. His top homebreds include GSW Ivanavinalot, dam of two-time champion Songbird (Medaglia d'Oro).

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Dixiana Homebred Off the Mark at Arlington

Sat, 2021-09-18 08:27

8th-Arlington, $30,000, Msw, 9-17, 2yo, 5fT, :57.57, fm, 2 lengths.
ELEGANT JOY (f, 2, Kitten's Joy–True Elegance, by Distorted Humor) tuned up for this debut with a strong four-furlong spin from the gate in :48 flat Sept. 8 and was off right at her morning line of 8-1. In the vanguard early, Elegant Joy held the rail chasing from third into the turn, was pulled out three deep at the head of the stretch and kicked on nicely to post a professional two-length victory over the fast-finishing Onyourmarkgetsetgo (Makors Finale). The winner's dam, a $500,000 Keeneland September purchase by Bill Shively's Dixiana Farm, is a daughter of Canadian Horse of the Year and multiple champion Sealy Hill (Point Given), making her a full-sister to Sovereign Award-winning female sprinter Hillaby (Distorted Humor). Sealy Hill is also the dam of GISW and $1.25-million KEESEP grad Cambier Parc (Medaglia d'Oro) and GSWs Belle Hill (Sky Mesa) and Gale Force (Giant's Causeway). True Elegance's yearling Frosted filly was scheduled to sell as hip 1335 during session five at Keeneland Saturday and she is also the dam of a filly foal by Ghostzapper. She was most recently bred to Authentic. Lifetime Record: 1-1-0-0, $18,000. Click for the Equibase.com chart or VIDEO, sponsored by TVG.
O/B-Dixiana Farms LLC (KY); T-Eoin G Harty.

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Jockeys and Jeans Raises Record Funds

Fri, 2021-09-17 18:26

Last Saturday's Jockeys and Jeans Fundraiser held at Monmouth Park raised $340,000, breaking the record of $312,000 raised in 2019 when the event was held at Canterbury Park. Organized by an all volunteer group, Jockeys and Jeans has now raised a total of $1.9 million for the Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund.

“I've heard it said that jockeys don't get the credit they deserve by the racing industry and don't do enough to help each other,” said Jockeys and Jeans President Barry Pearl. “We just proved that is a myth.”

At least 50 members of the racing community purchased sponsorships, including presenting sponsor Caesars Entertainment. The crowd of 200 included a dozen Hall of Fame riders.

Jockeys and Jeans Man of the Year was Brian Elmore, the former President of Racing at Indiana Grand Racetrack & Casino, site of the second Jockeys and Jeans event, and currently Director of Indiana Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association, which is a major event donor.

G.R. Carter Jr., who won six consecutive national Quarter Horse riding titles and 10 overall, received the Uphill Push Award, given annually to the person who provides the most aid to disabled former jockeys. Carter secured donations of over $32,000 in Quarter Horse breeding rights.

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Bisphosphonate Complaint Against Metz Dismissed

Fri, 2021-09-17 17:14

A complaint against trainer Jeff Metz regarding a positive bisphosphonate test from last year was dismissed during a closed session vote of the California Horse Racing Board commissioners Sept. 15. According to a release from the CHRB, the board believed it would be unfair to punish Metz for the positive test of his trainee, Camino de Estrella, because testing and a subsequent investigation revealed that the substance had been administered in 2018–well before the horse was in Metz's care. The Maddy Laboratory at UC Davis detected the presence of Tiludronic Acid in a urine sample taken from Camino de Estrella after he finished sixth in a race at Santa Anita last Sept. 27. The horse was subsequently disqualified and will remain so.

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Opening of Tapeta Track at Gulfstream to be Delayed

Fri, 2021-09-17 13:26

According to a report Friday in the Daily Racing Form, the opening of the synthetic Tapeta track at Gulfstream is on hold. The surface was expected to be put into use Sept. 23. However, according to DRF, there will be a delay of about one week before the Tapeta track will be unveiled for races in the afternoons.

The problem has arisen because the rail for the new course has not yet arrived from the U.K. and has been stuck in customs.

“We have a temporary rail we can take from the turf course, but we didn't want to actually conduct races with that,” Aidan Butler, the CEO for 1/st Racing, told the Form. “We've spent so much time, money, and effort on this thing there was no sense rushing around for the sake of another week. We'd also like to give horses the opportunity to gallop and work over the Tapeta, to allow them to get used to the new surface. Our intent at the moment is to open the track for galloping on or before the 23rd and aim to start racing on the Tapeta track on the 30th.”

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Memorial to Honor Forbes at Monmouth

Fri, 2021-09-17 11:36

A memorial service to celebrate the life of trainer and horsemen's advocate John H. Forbes will be held Saturday, September 25 at Monmouth Park's Turf Club from 2 to 5 p.m. Forbes, the longtime head of the New Jersey Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association and perennial top trainer at Monmouth, passed away this January. Anyone wishing to honor John's memory is welcome at the service.

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Aftercare Summit To Take Place at Thoroughbred Makeover

Fri, 2021-09-17 11:12

The third annual Thoroughbred Aftercare Summit will take place Tuesday, Oct. 12 as part of the Retired Racehorse Project's Thoroughbred Makeover and National Symposium, presented by Thoroughbred Charities of America.

The aftercare summit will included four panel discussions: “Proper Financials and Reporting”; “Best Practices for Rehabbing and Marketing Horses Retired Due to Injury;”; “How the Pandemic Has Changed the Face of Fundraising”; and “Navigating Common Challenges Aftercare Organizations Face.”  Confirmed panelists include Dr. Stuart Brown, DVM, Vice President of Equine Safety at Keeneland; Anna Ford, program director at New Vocations Racehorse Adoption Program; Karen Gustin, executive director of Kentucky Equine Adoption Center; Beverly Strauss, co-founder and executive director of MidAtlantic Horse Rescue; and Matt Thacker, Finance and Data Manager at TAA. Panelists will be updated at TBMakeover.org/aftercare-summit.

“Each year we work to curate session topics pertinent to those with a professional interest in aftercare, whether that be on the nonprofit side or in the private sector,” said RRP executive director Jen Roytz. “This year's lineup of topics and speakers is a reflection of the current challenges many organizations and individuals are facing and will hopefully offer solutions and opportunities for meaningful dialogue.”

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Texas Champions Honored With Video

Fri, 2021-09-17 10:55

The Texas Thoroughbred Association (TTA) has released a video honoring its 2020 Texas Champion racehorses as well as its human award winners. Under normal circumstances, an in-person awards ceremony would be held, but the continuing COVID-19 pandemic forced officials to cancel those plans.

“While we are disappointed in not having an awards ceremony this year, we are proud of the accomplishments of Texas-breds and Texas horsemen last year, and we are pleased to honor them with this video,” said Mary Ruyle, executive director of the TTA. “Congratulations go out to all the award winners.”

In addition to the equine honorees, businessman and philanthropist Jim 'Mattress Mack' McIngvale and Joe Straus, Jr., the co-founder of Retama Park in San Antonio, were presented with the T.I. 'Pops' Harkins Award for lifetime achievement.

The Allen Bogan Memorial Award for TTA member of the year was awarded to Bill Tracy, currently the farm manager at Eureka Thoroughbred Farm in Fredericksburg, TX, and to publicist Martha Claussen.

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This Side Up: Market Goes Back to the Future

Fri, 2021-09-17 10:28

The cyclical nature of our business, from the foaling shed to the race program, invites a length of perspective that can only be of comfort in times of trouble. This, too, shall pass–even a global pandemic. And if COVID disrupted our routines in 2020 as seldom before, with a September Derby and no Saratoga Sale, we appear determined to make as seamless a resumption as its lingering challenges allow.

Trade at Saratoga last month was eerily close to 2019. Of 180 hips into the ring for Fasig-Tipton's Select Sale, 135 sold for an aggregate $55,155,000 at an average $408,556 and median $350,000. Two years ago, 135 of 182 sold for $55,547,000 at $411,459 and $350,000.

Now, with a dark day at Keeneland on Friday permitting everyone to absorb a breathless start to the September Sale, it is possible to sharpen our sense of how the market is emerging from the crisis.

This, of course, was an auction that they did contrive to stage last year. While demand proved more resilient than many feared, predictably the sale took a big hit overall, rounding out at $249 million turnover for a $100,000 average, down from $360 million and $126,000 the previous year. But more reliable comparisons, to this point of the sale, are complicated by the fact that the one industry cycle that never quite repeats–paradoxically enough, at a place that so prizes tradition–is the format at Keeneland.

In 2019, Book 1 lasted three days before a two-session Book 2, a model last deployed in 2016. In 2018, Book 1 had been stretched to a fourth day. In 2017, conversely, it was compressed into a single session, with a three-day Book 2.

So let's hope that the new Keeneland team, with some extremely acute thinkers aboard, will give their chosen formula a proper chance to bed down. Judging on this week, they have every incentive to do so.

The most pertinent comparisons we can draw, entering the weekend, are with the 2018 and 2017 sales, which similarly presented the sale's best stock over four days, albeit packaged in different catalogs. Now remember that the 2018 sale was a knockout, ending up at $377 million at an average $129,335. This, being a nose ahead of 2019, represented the pinnacle of a bull run sustained through the decade since the banking crisis, thanks to relentless cash doping of the economy (nugatory interest rates, quantitative easing etc). As such, the 2017 sale had also registered a big leap, finishing with $308 million turnover and an average of $120,487, up from $273 million and $97,740 in 2017.

So let's put last year to one side–for what it's worth, the parallel two-day Books 1 and 2 yielded $168,130,000 from 643 sales at an average $261,477–and see how the best four days of stock in this market have performed against those boom years. In 2018, 640 head turned over $224,453,000 for an average $350,708. In 2017, 716 hips realized $200,760,000 at $280,391. In the first four days of this sale, 649 animals have changed hands for $205,754,000 at an average $317,032.

In other words, we are on track to restore the market to just about halfway between its 2017 and 2018 values, when we were approaching the absolute peak of a soaring market.

Now there's obviously still a long way to go. And even as it stands, plenty of individuals will have endured the tough experiences inevitable when you have to roll a sweaty stake to enter what proved an especially selective marketplace in Book 1 (barely half the published catalog both making it into the ring and finding a new home). That said, the hallmark of this week's trade appears to be its solidity and breadth.

One obvious factor is the increasing prevalence of high-end partnerships. Those vendors who resent combination instead of competition are missing the point. Because it's actually far more wholesome, on both sides of the market, for the big spenders to be spreading their risks.

In 2019, seven yearlings made $2 million or more at Keeneland. This year, it looks like we won't have one. But we know that people are spending the same kind of money, and the heart-breaking recent fate of Into Mischief's half-sister by American Pharoah, who topped that sale at $8.2 million, will doubtless comfort investors that they are both reducing their exposure even as they improve their odds of landing an elite runner. Many have evidently decided that to own only a leg in a future stallion represents a worthwhile sacrifice of ego in so precarious a business. And a wider spend, as we've seen this week, can reach very small consignments with life-changing results.

But the real key to this market may be a little simpler. While COVID has been a financial catastrophe for many households, some of the investors who drive our business are more affluent than ever–and they also have a renewed sense that life is for living. They have been piling up the cash, and don't want to sew pockets into a shroud.

That being so, it is vital that we give such people maximum confidence in our industry. And, in reality, the bloodstock market's buoyancy is menaced by many a needle.

The most perilous, of course, is literally that–and found on the end of a syringe. Commercial breeding for the ring, and not the racetrack, is another big problem. Then there's the foal crop, down again; unlike the volume of racing, which threatens a vicious circle via wagering disengagement. Even as Keeneland buzzed through its fourth session, moreover, Shadwell quietly announced the streamlining review feared since the loss of its founder Sheikh Hamdan earlier this year. The same Shadwell, that is, that topped spending at this sale in 2016 and 2017, and finished behind only Godolphin (owned by the late Sheikh's brother) in 2018 and 2019.

So none of us should be complacent in the perennial allure of the Thoroughbred. At the same time, we are entitled to take heart from the impetus behind the latest cycle this week.

How exciting, for instance, to see a 4-year-old Horse of the Year launch such a first crop of such startling precocity. After achieving a higher average this week than Tapit, War Front, Medaglia d'Oro and Uncle Mo, Gun Runner has the chance of a fifth graded stakes winner Saturday when Gun Town contests the GIII Iroquois S.–and the first starting points for the 2022 Derby.

Hope springs eternal! So begins another of those cherished, recurring cycles, by which we both take our bearings and also learn to transcend the narrow outlook of our own time and place. That's one of the reasons I love the statues unveiled at Churchill this week of Colonel Matt Winn, who died in 1949, seated in conversation with the late John Asher, who was born in 1956. Magnificent work as usual by local sculptor Raymond Graf and, in this instance, literally timeless. Good years, bad years, nothing lasts forever. And this, as a moment frozen out of time, might help to remind us that taking the long view actually boils down to living for the day.

The post This Side Up: Market Goes Back to the Future appeared first on TDN | Thoroughbred Daily News | Horse Racing News, Results and Video | Thoroughbred Breeding and Auctions.

Catalog For Fasig-Tipton Saratoga Fall Sale Online

Fri, 2021-09-17 09:47

A total of 284 horses of all ages have been cataloged for the Fasig-Tipton Saratoga Fall Sale, the auction house's annual New York breeding stock sale, to be held in a single session Monday, Oct. 18 at the Humphrey S. Finney Sales Pavilion in Saratoga Springs, New York. The event returns to the calendar for 2020, having been a casualty of the COVID-19 pandemic 12 months ago.

“After being forced to cancel last year's sale due to the pandemic, Saratoga Fall returns with a larger catalogue than 2019,” said Fasig-Tipton President Boyd Browning.

“We will begin the sale with nearly 90 broodmares and racing/broodmare prospects–an increase in quality and quantity for that segment of the sale,” continued Browning. “We will then transition into a strong group of nearly 200 weanlings–the vast majority of which were foaled in New York.”

Among those are youngsters by the likes of Accelerate, Catalina Cruiser, Central Banker, Cloud Computing, Constitution, Distorted Humor, Freud, Goldencents, Honor Code, Klimt, Laoban, Malibu Moon, Mendelssohn, Practical Joke, Tonalist, Unified, Vino Rosso and World of Trouble.

A pair of then-weanlings–a colt and a filly–by Practical Joke topped the 2019 Saratoga Fall sale when bringing $160,000 and $150,000, respectively, and each is currently in training at the Spa.

Click here for the catalogue.

The post Catalog For Fasig-Tipton Saratoga Fall Sale Online appeared first on TDN | Thoroughbred Daily News | Horse Racing News, Results and Video | Thoroughbred Breeding and Auctions.

Stellar Book 2 Concludes at Keeneland

Thu, 2021-09-16 21:12

by Jessica Martini & Christie DeBernardis

LEXINGTON, KY – The two-session Book 2 of the Keeneland September Yearling Sale concluded with another day of competitive bidding and two additional seven-figure yearlings Thursday in Lexington, bringing the total number of lots to surpass the million-dollar mark to 15.

“Excellent,” Keeneland's vice president of sales Tony Lacy said when asked to gauge the day's activity. “The median was up 48% and the average was up 37% [for the session] and we've just passed the $200,000,000 mark for gross sales for the first four sessions. We cannot complain about anything that's gone on this week. I think it's been extremely strong and very, very deep. It's been a powerhouse week one.”

During the two Book 2 sessions this year, 426 yearlings grossed $111,772,000 for an average of $262,376 and a median of $207,500.

The Book 2 section of the 2020 auction, held amidst the pre-vaccination pandemic, saw 380 horses sold through the ring for a total of $75,368,000. The book average was $190,988 and the median was $150,000. With the inclusion of post-sale transactions, 415 yearlings grossed $79,260,000 for an average of $190,988 and a median of $150,000.

While Book 2 produced the auction's highest-priced offering so far when a colt by City of Light sold for $1.7 million Wednesday, Thursday's session produced co-topping $1 million colts when Mike Ryan secured a son of Into Mischief (hip 874) from the Mt. Brilliant Farm consignment and BSW/Crow Colts Group took home a son of Street Sense (hip 1022) from the Farfellow Farms consignment.

After four days of selling, the Keeneland September sale has a dark day Friday, but the strength of the market during the week provides validation for the company's format which is designed to put as many horses in front of people as possible in a short amount of time, according to Keeneland's director of sales operations Cormac Breathnach.

“I think a lot of people loved the format,” Breathnach said. “It's speaking for itself in terms of the results we are looking at. The median is really important–that middle ground, what the horses are really bringing and not so influenced by the very high numbers. The RNA rate is very much in control. This is a sale that is keeping pace with a banner year, which was 2019, and it's really just blowing last year out of the water. The format has been a part of that and it's kept the buyers in town and kept them engaged.”

With 88 horses reported not sold during Thursday's session, the buy-back rate was 30.45%. Through four sessions, the buy-back rate stands at 30.18%. It was 39.59% at this point a year ago.

Bidding resumes at Keeneland Saturday morning at 10 a.m. and the sale continues through next Friday.

 

Ryan Strikes for Into Mischief Colt
The Book 2 section of the Keeneland September sale had its third seven-figure yearling when bloodstock agent Mike Ryan outlasted an internet bidder to secure a colt by Into Mischief (hip 874) for $1 million Thursday. Bred and consigned by Greg Goodman's Mt. Brilliant Farm, the bay yearling is out of stakes winner and graded placed Secret Someone (A.P. Indy). His second dam, Private Gift (Unbridled), produced the dam of Grade I winner Dunbar Road (Quality Road).

“I am very familiar with the family because a good friend of mine bred Dunbar Road,” Ryan said after signing the ticket on the yearling. “I bought the dam of Dunbar Road and it's a family I am familiar with and I own some mares from the family. [The yearling] reminded me a lot of Practical Joke. If he runs to his pedigree, top and bottom, he has terrific stallion potential.”

Private Gift is also the dam of Private Mission (Into Mischief), who sold for $750,000 at the 2019 Fasig-Tipton Saratoga sale. The 3-year-old filly romped home by 6 1/2 lengths in the Aug. 21 GIII Torrey Pines S.

“We bid a long ways on Private Mission, a 3/4 sister to this colt,” Ryan said. “She is three for four and won the Torrey Pines. She could be anything. So we know the pedigree works.”

Ryan said he was bidding on behalf of an undisclosed group of buyers and the yearling would be trained by Chad Brown.

“He looks like a horse who will hopefully run at Saratoga next summer, but stretch out from there,” Ryan said. “The dam is by A.P. Indy and the second dam is by Unbridled. Unbridled and Empire Maker under Into Mischief has been very successful. Mandaloun comes to mind. I thought he was a special colt. He has a lot of upside and hopefully we will turn out lucky. If he's half as good as Practical Joke, we'll be very happy.”

Mt. Brilliant Farm purchased Private Gift for $2.3 million at the 2008 Fasig-Tipton November sale. The operation campaigned Secret Someone, who won the 2016 Kentucky Downs Ladies Turf S. and was third in that year's GIII Modesty H.

“We loved the horse. We put a low reserve just to get him started because we knew he could do the work himself,” Goodman said. “We love his family. Private Gift is the first really expensive horse I ever bought. I have sold a lot of the family and kept a lot of the daughters. He could not be in better hands and I am so happy about it.”

With the strength of Book 2 bolstered by four seven-figure yearlings, including the likely $1.7-million sale topper, Goodman agreed there could be a disparity with breeders looking to shift their horses into Book 2 over Book 1.

“I had a great Book 1,” Goodman said. “I had five horses sell for $2.7 million. So I had a great first book. But I do think that there is disparity. I think some people hold their horses back and put them in Book 2 and they do great. And I think there are horses who don't belong in Book 1 that should have been in Book 2 that bring a lot of money. It's a difficult situation. I think the new [Keeneland] guys are doing a great job so far. I think this always been a problem. It's been a problem since they quit the July sale.”

Breeders also need to space out their yearlings in separate books. Ryan pointed out that Mt. Brilliant had sold another son of Into Mischief for $1.35 million during the first session of the sale.

“Sometimes you have to spread them out to give yourself the best shot,” Ryan said. @JessMartiniTDN

 

Street Sense Colt Puts Farfellow Farms Back in the Spotlight
The Knelman family's Farfellow Farms returned to consigning its own horses just last year with a two-horse consignment during Book 3 of Keeneland September. This year they brought seven horses and were immediately rewarded when their first horse through the ring, a Street Sense colt (Hip 1022), brought $1 million from BSW/Crow Colts Group.

“We actually brought [second dam] Critikola (Arg) (Tough Critic) up from Argentina, so this family has a lot of sentimental value for us,” Jak Knelman said. “It makes it all the more rewarding. We expected it to break out, but we tried to keep our expectations low. It's hard in the horse industry, but sometimes it lines up.”

A MGSW in her native Argentina, Critikola was imported by the Knelmans and placed in a pair of Grade I events for them in California. She produced GI Kentucky Oaks upsetter Lemons Forever (Lemon Drop Kid) for the Knelmans, who is the dam of champion Forever Unbridled (Unbridled's Song) and GISW Unbridled Forever (Unbridled's Song).

Hip 1022 is out of her SP daughter Critikal Reason (Aptitude), who is already the dam of MSW & GISP Bajan (Speightstown) and GSP Virtual Machine (Drosselmeyer).

“We started selling in the recent years,” Knelman said. “We have a small broodmare band of about 12 mares. This is the best colt we've brought to the sales in a long time and it really was a team effort. Our farm manager Josh [Hennessy] and Emmanuel, who works the farm. They put so much effort into it. It's really a family thing with my parents and myself.” @CDeBernardisTDN

 

BSW/Crow Colts Group Makes First Seven Figure Purchase
Stallion-making partnerships have been all the rage in the past few years and Brad Cox and his team are joining the fray. Cox has gathered about 10 of his owners and teamed up with bloodstock agents Liz Crow and Brad Weisbord to gather a group of colts that fit the two-turn Classic build. Cox's team has been quite active at Keeneland this week and made their biggest purchase to date Thursday when going to $1 million for a son of Street Sense (Hip 1022).

“Brad Cox put it together. Obviously him and Liz Crow have a great relationship,” Weisbord said. “We got started with Brad in 2015. Liz actually told me Brad Cox was going to be a champion trainer one day. I think my first question at the time was who is Brad Cox. But, look Monomoy Girl (Tapizar), British Idiom (Flashback), Aunt Pearl (Ire) (Lope de Vega {Ire}). Brad doesn't need any introduction.”

Weisbord and Crow did their bidding seated alongside Spendthrift's Ned Toffey. The late B. Wayne Hughes' operation is one of the partners in the new venture, which also includes Steve Landers Racing, Marty Schwartz, Michael Dubb, Jim Bakke, Marshall Gramm & Clay Sanders's Ten Strike Racing, Paul Farr, Rick Kueber's Kueber Racing, Chris Jean's Big Easy Racing and Rick Kanter's Winners Win.

“Spendthrift Farm is our seed partner,” Weisbord said. “Unfortunately, we lost a pioneer in the sport in B. Wayne Hughes. Eric Gustavson and his wife Tammy have taken over ownership of the farm and obviously they are going to be major players for the next 50 years. We have gotten to know Eric and they have a great leader in Ned Toffey.”

The Elite Sales managing partner continued, “This all kind of started when they bought Monomoy Girl and sent her back to Brad. When Brad started this venture, he thought they could be a good seed player in this group. He put a few more partners in the group. There will be nine or 10 names on the ownership line. Hopefully the Jockey Club will allow it. It's good for the sport. Terry Finley mentioned the power of the partnership and they are carrying these sales.”

The BSW/Crow Colts Group has purchased a total of 17 colts in the first two books for a gross of $5.98 million and average of $351,765.

“We will start shopping Book 3,” Weisbord said. “We have plenty of capital left so we will keep going. I think we have 20+ horses so far and the goal was to get 20 so we are there. Hopefully we get one or two stallions. It's a stallion-making group and we want to have fun along the way.” @CDeBernardisTDN

 

Violence Colt Proves Popular
Bloodstock agent Jacob West, bidding out back alongside trainer Todd Pletcher and just a few feet from Bob LaPenta's manager John Panagot, saw off that determined foe to acquire a colt by Violence (hip 1057) for $950,000 Thursday at Keeneland. The yearling was bred and consigned by Larry Doyle's KatieRich Farms.

“Todd obviously trained Violence and the first thing he said was that the colt reminded him of Violence when we saw the horse the other day,” West said after signing the ticket on the yearling on behalf of Repole Stable and St. Elias. “He's out of an A.P. Indy mare. What's selling well right now is that two-turn dirt horse and that's kind of what we felt that he was. He's got family behind him and an incredible physical and now we just hope he runs as good as he looks.”

The colt is out of False Impression (A.P. Indy) and is a half-brother to multiple Grade I winner Standard Deviation (Curlin).

Momentum on the yearling continued to build at the sales grounds over the last several days, according to Doyle.

“We thought it started off slow,” Doyle said. “And Monday and Tuesday his shows were sharing with our other horses, but just in the last couple of days they just started showing up for him. He vetted perfectly and let's hope he is the next Violence. I love False Impression. She produced Standard Deviation and she's been great for us all along.”

The sale of the Violence colt capped a perfect five-for-five day for the KatieRich consignment, which also sold a Quality Road filly (hip 1050) for $500,000 to Peter Brant's White Birch Farm, and a filly by Tapit (hip 943) and a colt by Uncle Mo (hip 970) for $300,000 each to Mike Ryan.

“It has been very strong,” Doyle said of the market. “I have had more looks at this sale–165 on this horse. Typically a year or two ago, we'd have 125. The Japanese aren't here, but there are a lot people here looking.”

Panagot was quick to get back into the bidding fray, but he agreed he was finding a competitive market.

“The good horses are competitive,” he said. “There have been a few horses we thought would be a little more busy, but I think at the very top, it's super tough. Mr. LaPenta loved [the Violence colt]. He's been buying horses in a partnership at this sale and that was a horse for himself and he was pretty gung-ho. He went past where he wanted to go probably by 25% or so.”

LaPenta's Whitehorse Stable, in partnership with Madaket and e Five Racing, has purchased seven colts so far at the Keeneland sale. On Thursday, the group went to $235,000 to acquire a yearling by Mendelssohn (hip 900), a colt by Twirling Candy (hip 953) for $170,000 and a colt by Candy Ride (Arg) (hip 1045) for $125,000 and a son of Nyquist (hip 1073) for $200,000. Earlier in the sale, the partnership went to $350,000 for a colt by Tapit (hip 662), a Collected (hip 317) for $200,000 and an Empire Maker (hip 528).

With the SF/Starlight/Madaket partnership and BSW/Crow Colts Group both looking to purchase potential future stallions, Panagot said he had plenty of company when bidding on quality colts.

“You have to pay for the good horses, especially the colts,” he said. “We are focusing on colts and I don't think we are that innovative with that because a lot of people are. And that's going to really bulk it up. But we are just trying to buy a handful with the right pedigrees and the right bodies and athletic horses and we feel like we have. We've bought five or six of them, but you have to fight for them.” @JessMartiniTDN

 

Indian Creek Gets Off to a Fast Start
Shack Parrish's Indian Creek consignment broke from the gate running Thursday when the first offering of the sale, an Into Mischief colt (Hip 755), brought $850,000 from Courtlandt Farm.

“He is a really nice horse,” Parrish said. “This was our first horse of the sale. I think Tuesday and Wednesday were extraordinary and Monday was kind of bouncy. Yesterday, especially was extremely strong, and today has already opened that way. It looks pretty good so far.”

Bred by Bob Edwards' Fifth Avenue Bloodstock and Centerline Breeding, Hip 755 is out of SP Inspired Grace (Curlin), a half-sister to GISW Off the Tracks (Curlin) and MGSW Concord Point (Tapit).

“He did everything right at the farm,” Parrish said. “He is very mild-mannered. He just keeps developing. He's beautiful now, but he will be even more beautiful this time next year.”

Courtlandt Farm has been extremely active through the first two books and have been quite keen on Into Mischief. Hip 755 was their third purchase by the red-hot Spendthrift stallion.

“We loved the colt, felt like he had a lot of stretch to him and looks like a colt that will fit our program,” said Courtlandt Farm manager Ernie Retamoza. “We are excited to have him and to get him at that number honestly, not to belittle what he brought.” @CDeBernardisTDN

 

Practical Joke Filly a Sentimental Score for St. George
When Archie St. George sold a Practical Joke colt (Hip 1079) he purchased for $105,000 at KEEJAN to Talla Racing for $750,000 during Thursday's session, it was not his first pinhooking score. However, it was certainly one of his most meaningful as St. George bought the colt from his good friend Mike Recio of South Point Sales Agency, who passed Thursday morning.

“We bought him as a weanling in January off South Point Sales, so I guess someone is looking down on us and helping us through it all.,” St. George said, the emotion clear on his face. “It's a sentimental sale. It was great. He was a very nice horse.”

He continued, “I'd like to thank the buyer Mike Talla and the underbidders, David Ingordo and his team and the Coolmore team. Practical Joke has been a very good stallion and he is a very nice horse. Fingers crossed we will hopefully see him down the road.”

Practical Joke is second to Gun Runner of the leading freshman sire list this term with 12 winners, two of which are also black-type winners. His graded stakes-winning son Wit was second in last weekend's GI Hopeful S. at Saratoga.

“Roger O'Callaghan rang me before the January sale and we had a Practical Joke filly back with him at Tally Ho,” St. George said. “He said whatever happens we are buying a Practical Joke. We did and the rest is history.”

Bred in Ontario by South Point, Hip 1079 is the first foal out of Gal Factor (The Factor), who is a half-sister to this year's GI Arkansas Derby winner Super Stock (Dialed In) and GISP Boujie Girl (Flashback).

“He has done very well,” St. George said. “He is a big, tall horse. As the spring and summer went on, he filled out. He has just been a simple straightforward horse. He got a little update in the second dam this year and everything fell into place. The stars aligned.”  @CDeBernardisTDN

 

A Profitable Duo for Duignan
Gabriel Duignan and a pair of Irish partners doubled up on a pair of pinhooking scores Thursday at Keeneland, selling a son of Speightstown (hip 944) for $425,000 to Starlight and Harrell Ventures and returning a few hips later to sell a daughter of Munnings (hip 961) for $280,000 to bloodstock agent Clay Scherer. The colt had been purchased by the partners for $180,000 at last year's Keeneland November sale and the filly had been acquired for $105,000 at that same auction.

The Speightstown colt is out of Wild Ridge (Tapit), a daughter of multiple graded stakes winner Wild Gams (Forest Wildcat).

“He was a very nice foal, a very typical Speightstown,” Duignan said of the colt “And I like the Tapit mares–he is a hell of a broodmare sire. He grew up and he was well-received on the grounds.”

The Munnings filly, a Canadian-bred, is out of Artillia (Artie Schiller), a half-sister to graded placed Solitaire (Victory Gallop).

“I think the Ontario-bred helped the Munnings filly,” Duignan said. “And Munnings, of course, has improved in the meantime. He's in another league. She's a big, strong filly who looks like she'll get a route of ground and with clean X-rays. She did everything the right way.”

Of buying weanlings last fall, Duignan said, “We had to work hard on it and we got outbid on a lot. I wouldn't have called it soft buying them last year.”

But the Irishman agreed the September market has been very competitive.

“This might be a bit more robust,” he said when asked to compare the two markets. “Our racing is so healthy right now. It probably makes more sense than it ever did to race a horse. There is a wide array of buyers. Our market here in America is very good here at the moment. We don't have a lot of foreign participation, but the domestic market is very good.”

Looking ahead to the remaining week of the September sale, Duignan said, “I am hoping it will be good. The crowds are still on the grounds and there a lot of people who haven't gotten to buy yet. I am hoping it will kick on.” @JessMartiniTDN

 

The post Stellar Book 2 Concludes at Keeneland appeared first on TDN | Thoroughbred Daily News | Horse Racing News, Results and Video | Thoroughbred Breeding and Auctions.

Indiana Grand Adds to ’21 Season

Thu, 2021-09-16 18:00

The Indiana Horse Racing Commission (IHRC) approved Thursday Indiana Grand Racing & Casino's request for four additional racing days for the 2021 season. The track, which will now offer 123 days of live racing in 2021, will run Monday, Oct. 11 (Columbus Day) and continue through Nov. 11. The previous closing day was set for Monday, Nov. 8. Increased business this season has contributed to adding the four additional racing days in addition to the growth of the local horse population, increasing demand for additional racing opportunities in Indiana. Also, the Columbus Day card will be used to make up for the cancellation of a day of racing in August due to extreme heat.

“We're very pleased to be in a position where we are able to request additional racing dates at the end of our current 120-day meet,” said Eric Halstrom, Vice President and General Manager of Racing. “The Indiana horsemen, our loyal partners, are very deserving of these additional opportunities and, upon approval from the IHRC, we'll end our meet with a bang on Veteran's Day, Nov. 11.”

The post Indiana Grand Adds to ’21 Season appeared first on TDN | Thoroughbred Daily News | Horse Racing News, Results and Video | Thoroughbred Breeding and Auctions.

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