Sid Fernando Sid Fernando

Sid Fernando is president and CEO of Werk Thoroughbred Consultants, Inc., originator of the Werk Nick Rating and eNicks. He has written a bi-weekly column for the TDN since March, 2018.

Taking Stock: Stallions by Non-Elite Sires

Two columns back on Accelerate (Lookin At Lucky), I wrote this: “There’s been a bit of a trend lately for farms to stand accomplished horses by stallions that aren’t ‘big names.’ WinStar’s Tiznow (Cee’s Tizzy, by Relaunch) and Lane’s End’s Candy Ride (Arg) (Ride the Rails, by Cryptoclearance, by Fappiano) are older successful examples of [...]

[ Read More ]
Taking Stock: Issues With the Integrity Act

Over the last four or five years, The Jockey Club and its allies, fed up with the lack of uniform medication policies among States, decided to take matters into their own hands and lead the charge to craft and push some regulatory bills on “anti-doping and medication control” in Congress. They were looking to turn [...]

[ Read More ]
Taking Stock: Accelerate is Bright Spot for Lane’s End

The sun is shining as brightly on Will Farish’s Lane’s End in Versailles as it does at his winter base in Boca Grande, Florida. “We’re trying to keep things chugging along,” said Bill Farish, who was stationed back at the farm in Kentucky and overseeing operations when I called on Tuesday, a wintry and cold [...]

[ Read More ]
Taking Stock: The ‘Speightstown Effect’ Revisited

No, WinStar’s Speightstown (Gone West–Silken Cat, by Storm Cat) is not an underrated sire, as some said on social media shortly after the stallion’s Competitionofideas won the Gl American Oaks at Santa Anita Dec. 29. Speightstown is by all standards a top-class stallion, and at age 21 he’s just as appealing now as he’s been [...]

[ Read More ]
Taking Stock: The Horse of the Year Debate

What a time to be alive! I’ve seen it said on Twitter and elsewhere that the Triple Crown races are nothing more than a series of “restricted” races for 3-year-olds, and, therefore, not as important as the “unrestricted” Grade I races for older horses. To diminish the accomplishments of Triple Crown winner Justify (Scat Daddy) [...]

[ Read More ]
Taking Stock: Brazilian-Owned Bonne Chance Establishing Itself

When Brazilian billionaire Gilberto Sayao Da Silva purchased Nat Rea’s Regis Farm (formerly part of Rick Trontz’s Hopewell Farm) on Pisgah Pike in Woodford County in 2015, his wife christened the 300-plus acre property Bonne Chance Farm. The name, which means “good luck” in French, has been prophetic. That same year, Gilberto Sayao also bought [...]

[ Read More ]
Taking Stock: The Interconnectedness of Galileo and O’Brien

Aidan O’Brien deftly maneuvered his silver Land Rover inside a covered round pen at Ballydoyle where a group of yearling fillies was being ridden single file against the perimeter wall. He drove surprisingly close to them, circling inside of them, observing and exchanging words with the riders, motioning with his right hand as he steered [...]

[ Read More ]
Taking Stock: Arrogate, Cross Traffic Keep Sire in Spotlight

Taylor Made’s franchise stallion Unbridled’s Song (Unbridled – Trolley Song, by Caro {Ire}) died five years ago at age 20, but the indelible mark he left on the industry continues. Last year, for instance, he led the North American general sire list with the help of Arrogate‘s Gl Pegasus World Cup Invitational and G1 Dubai [...]

[ Read More ]
Taking Stock: Philanthropy and Racehorses Define Gary and Mary West

Gary and Mary West’s hot pink and black diamond silks will be flown by two high-profile colts in the Breeders’ Cup races at Churchill Downs this weekend. Game Winner (Candy Ride {Arg}), undefeated in three starts, a multiple Grade l winner, and the pro tem leader of his division, will be favored in the Gl [...]

[ Read More ]
Taking Stock: Turf and Dirt Under the Microscope

First, the facts, bare and unvarnished: In 2017, 17% of the 37,483 flat races in the United States were on turf, up from 5% of 71,454 races in 1991. I wrote about this shift to turf and its relationship to the breeding industry here in March. At face value, this is a significant increase, but [...]

[ Read More ]