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Bill Oppenheim Bill Oppenheim

A Kansas native who has worked in racing journalism since 1974, Bill Oppenheim is the co-founder of the newsletter Racing Update, and served as the paper's editor until 1993, when he moved to Scotland. Oppenheim developed a reputation as an independent observer of the sales scene in the early 1980's, and he and the staff of Racing Update originated a number of methods of stallion and sales analysis which have been adopted throughout the industry. Since 2000, he has written a weekly column for TDN, as well as reporting from the major sales. He also works as a consultant, primarily for pedigree analysis, in a private capacity.

Bill Oppenheim: The Age Angle

In the final of our series mining the year-end 2015 APEX data (covering seven years of racing, 2009-2015) we’re looking at the age indexes. These are produced for us, as is all the APEX data we use in TDN, by The Jockey Club Information Systems (TJCIS). One of the features of the APEX calculations are age indexes, [...]

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Bill Oppenheim: Strength In Numbers

Much as we’d like them to, they can’t all be superstars. If they can’t be stars, or at least A Runners ($134,280 or more in North America in 2015), it’s still better if they are useful horses–B Runners or C Runners. A Runners are 2% of starters, whereas B Runners (next 2%) and C Runners [...]

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Oppenheim: Tapit Becomes Galileo

When we did our APEX review of Leading North American and European Sires of 2014 ABC Runners, Coolmore’s superstar sire Galileo was out on his own, having sired a total of 60 ABC Runners in the seven countries we cover in 2014. A group of six other sires had ABC Runner numbers in the 40’s: [...]

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street sense bw
Oppenheim: First Foals 2009-2012

Tracking the progress of young sires is obviously one of the most important aspects of the APEX (Annual Progeny Earnings indeX) ratings. Usually we focus on the two most recent sire crops rated, which in this case would be F2011 (third-crop sires of 2015) and F2012 (second-crop) sires. In order to provide a little context [...]

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Galileo Top Apex Sire Again

APEX (Annual Progeny Earnings indeX) ratings are based on the percentage of runners which achieve certain earnings thresholds, which means sires with the highest number of runners are usually at a disadvantage when evaluated by this type of measurement. So the enormity of the achievement by Coolmore’s flagship sire, Galileo, in scoring the highest A [...]

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Tapit Leads All North American Sires

In 2014, four sires which went to stud in Kentucky in 2005 and had their first foals in 2006 (so we denote them as F2006 sires) ranked among the top 10 sires in North America: Gainesway’s Tapit was the Leading Sire in North America, with a record $18.6 million in progeny earnings. Candy Ride, who [...]

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Frankel and his groom Rob Bowley at Banstead Manor Stud
Saxon Street, 22.11.12 Pic: Edward Whitaker
2016: Frankel Has Runners

Every year is important, but 2016 will be especially significant because we will see the first crop of Frankel (Galileo) the freak, the highest-rated and best racehorse of all time. Two laws, or at least tendencies, of Genetics – that any population generally breeds back to the middle; and that outliers (freaks) cannot reproduce themselves [...]

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Bill Oppenheim: 33 European Value Sires

Whereas in the U.S., we used $25,000 as our stud fee cutoff for consideration in our ‘value sire’ edition, for European sires we are using a cutoff of 15,000 (whether Sterling, which is worth more, or Euros). We begin with England, where Kirsten Rausing’s Lanwades Stud has advertised itself as “the independent option,” in contrast [...]

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Kentucky: 42 Value Sires at $25K and Under

You know the Terms and Conditions by now: the opinions expressed herein are solely my own; we hope the data included is accurate but can’t guarantee it; definitely can’t guarantee there are seasons available in stallions we tout; we are most definitely fallible; and if anybody feels their horse or a horse they like should [...]

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Mares are led into the sales ring at Tattersalls at the December Sales
Newmarket 1.12.15 Pic: Edward Whitaker
Oppenheim: Summing Up

This week’s Sales Ticker tells us that over $466 million in horses were sold at 2015 second-half calendar year mixed sales (“first-half” mixed sales, held in January and February, are considered separately as they carried 2014 matings). This is down $26 million (5%) from last year’s corresponding sales, and about $60 million (11%) from the [...]

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