Scat Daddy Colt Tops Book 2 Opener

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Hip 506 | Keeneland photo

by Jessica Martini, Brian DiDonato, and Christie DeBernardis

LEXINGTON, Ky–A $950,000 colt from the final crop of international phenomenon Scat Daddy topped Tuesday’s first of three Book 2 sessions of the Keeneland September Yearling Sale. Acquired by Kerri Radcliffe Bloodstock, he was consigned by Gainesway, Agent XXVII as hip 506.

A total of 194 yearlings changed hands Tuesday for gross receipts of $48,221,000. The average was $248,562 and median was $200,000 with a 33.79% RNA rate. A total of 22 youngsters brought $500,000 or better. Last year’s September sale featured three Book 1 sessions followed by two Book 2 sessions, while this year’s auction had just one extra-select Book 1 session on Monday. Due to the format change, year-to-year comparisons would be inexact until at least the end of Book 2 on Thursday.

“It was very lively trade today,” said Keeneland’s Director or Sales Geoffrey Russell. “The whole goal with the layout of the September Sale this year was to get it off to a good start, which we did [Monday] night. I think the enthusiasm continued very favorably today… We wanted to build up excitement and enthusiasm and I think it did all the way until the very end when we sold that Scat Daddy for $950,000. I saw the colt over the weekend with his breeder and we both commented that he looked like a Royal Ascot 2-year-old, so we look forward to watching Jeremy [Noseda] train him for Royal Ascot.”

Cumulatively through two days the gross is $102,396,000 for 289 sold. The average is $354,311 with a $255,000 median. The RNA rate sits at 34.02%.

Book 2 will continue Wednesday at 11:00 a.m.

WHAT THEY’RE SAYING…

Just like everybody else, I find it very tough. If you get discouraged, you go home, but you can’t get discouraged in this industry because getting discouraged doesn’t do anybody any good. We don’t get discouraged and we will be around as long as we have to to buy some good horses.

On the new format:

People are here to buy the kinds of horses that are going to be sold in the first three or four days, so the fact a smaller group sold Monday and a bigger group sold today doesn’t really matter when it comes down to it. It is the same group of horses and the same group of people and we are all trying to buy good horses. I’m sure it didn’t have that much of an effect. –Terry Finley, West Point Thoroughbreds

I think [the new format is] affecting the way people navigate through the sale. It is a big workload. I don’t want to say that it had felt overwhelming for people, but it is definitely a challenge for buyers to get through the Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday horses before they determine what they want to vet and what they want to bid on. It has been a little bit of an adjustment from that standpoint. For us, we have seen a lot of activity late, like a lot of vet work coming in closer to the time they are going through the ring than we might normally have seen in years past. It’s good though. It feels good up here today. –Lane’s End’s Allaire Ryan

What’s good about this week is, the prices are high for good things and [the buying bench] is deep. There are a lot of people here who want to buy horses. It is the place to be if you have a good horse I think. –Owner/breeder Joe Allen

It has been very strong. The reality of today’s marketplace is people land on the same horse and they have high expectations. They have to be big, physical horses. They have to vet and jump through all the hoops. If so, they bring extra, but if you miss by just an inch, they bring half of what they are supposed to. IF you bring the horse that is sort of bulletproof and has enormous mass appeal, you are rewarded. –Hill ‘n’ Dale’s John Sikura

CAIRO PRINCE CONTINUES HIS ASCENT

His first runners have some seven months at least before they hit the track, but Cairo Prince (Pioneerof the Nile) has been as hot as they come already in the sales ring and that trend continued Tuesday as Sheikh Hamdan’s Shadwell Estate Company fended off the likes of Albaugh Family Stable, Teruya Yoshida and West Point Thoroughbreds to snag a $900,000 colt by the Airdrie inmate.

Bred by Brereton Jones and consigned by his family’s Airdrie Stud as hip 391, the Feb. 23 foal is a half to GI La Brea S. heroine Sam’s Sister (Brother Maker), who was purchased by Colts Neck Stables for $1.15 million as a broodmare prospect here in November of 2015. Now 3-year-old half-sister Sensitive (Divine Park) was a $475,000 Solis/Litt buy here two years ago. A two-time winner for LNJ Foxwoods, she was second in a lucrative Kentucky Downs allowance Sept. 7. This is the female family of Grade I winners Sweet Talker (Stormin Fever), Include Me Out (Include) and Check the Label (Stormin Fever).

“That’s an exceptional price for any horse, let alone a first-year stallion,” said Bret Jones. “That’s the best female family that we have, and thankfully it looks like that female family’s going to keep getting better.”

Dam Kittery Point (Include) produced a Liam’s Map colt Mar. 23 before visiting Candy Ride (Arg).

Cairo Prince was third among North American first-crop sires by weanling average last year, and is in the same spot by yearling average in 2017. Among his other pricey sales results was a record-breaking $500,000 colt at the Fasig-Tipton New York-bred sale last month.

“This is one that’s been a star from the start, and those are the ones that get you excited,” Jones said when asked how hip 391 has compared to some of the other Cairo Prince foals. “Several months ago we were hoping we could just wake up and it’d be the September sale because you want to take care of ones like that.”

Cairo Prince, himself a $250,000 KEESEP grad in 2012, aired in the following year’s GII Nashua S. for trainer Kiaran McLaughlin, Terry Murray, Paul Braverman, Harvey A. Clarke and Craig W. Robertson III. He just missed to eventual champion Honor Code (A.P. Indy) in the GII Remsen S., but stamped himself as one of the favorites for the GI Kentucky Derby with a 5 3/4-length score in Gulfstream’s GII Holy Bull S. over the winter. Darley acquired a majority interest in Cairo Prince after that, but he settled for fourth as the favorite in the GI Florida Derby before being retired due to injury.

“Kiaran McLaughlin has certainly been one of Shadwell’s big trainers, and Kiaran knows Cairo Prince better than anybody on the planet,” Jones said. “He trained him, and he told us a long time ago he really believed he was going to win the Kentucky Derby. That he had the talent to do it, but he had bad luck. That was a big reason why we set out to partner with Darley [to stand Cairo Price], and they’ve been the greatest partners in the world to let us come in and get behind him with our mares and partner up the way that we have. We’re thrilled that Shadwell got [hip 391], and I think everybody has to think he’s got a big future.”

Of Cairo Prince’s influence on his progeny in general, he added, “The athleticism. He’s got it, and anyone who’s ever been around him will yell you how athletic and brilliantly talented he was, and on top of that what an intelligent horse he is. We’re seeing that now with the yearlings–they’ve got great minds, they’ve got great bodies, and I think they’re ready for the afternoon.” @BDiDonatoTDN

PATIENCE PAYS OFF FOR RADCLIFFE

Keeping a low profile through most of Book 2’s opening session, Kerri Radcliffe finished off the day with a bang, teaming up with Three Chimneys Farm on an $850,000 Violence colt (hip 489) and taking home the session’s highest-priced offering, a $950,000 Scat Daddy colt (hip 506). Radcliffe was acting on behalf of the newly formed Phoenix Thoroughbreds, who she has been buying high-priced horses for at sales across the globe all year.

From the final crop of the late Scat Daddy, who has been red hot around the world this year, hip 506 is the first foal out of MSP Miss Lamour (Mr. Greeley). His second dam is MGSW Batique (Storm Cat) and he also hails from the female family of English Highweight and Group 1 winner Hawkbill (Kitten’s Joy).

“I think everyone knows my love affair with Scat Daddy and we all know there aren’t many of them left,” Radcliffe said. “So I was waiting all week to find a Scat Daddy colt that I loved. I saw this one, I fell in love with him and I had to have him. He is a beautiful horse. He has gaskins on gaskins. He actually reminded me a lot of [G2 Queen Mary S. winner] Acapulco (Scat Daddy) at the 2-year-olds sales. I hope that he is as good as she was at Ascot.”

The chestnut colt was consigned by Gainesway on behalf of breeder Helen K. Groves Revocable Trust.

“He was so composed and classy in the back ring,” Gainesway’s Michael Hernon said. “He’s just a special horse. I thought it was a very good price for him, but he might look inexpensive next year. I think he’ll be a really good 2-year-old. He is balanced and powerful with a lot of speed. There is a lot of Mr. Greeley in him.”

Just 18 hips earlier, Radcliffe won out on a furious round of bidding for an $850,000 son of Violence, whose first crop just hit the track this year.

“He was such a beautiful individual, so we expected to pay a lot of money for him,” Radcliffe said. “He is probably my favorite colt in the sale. He is just gorgeous. He looks fast. He looks racy. He is everything you want in a horse. He is so athletic looking and looks like a racehorse. Let’s hope he is one.”

The colt will be owned in partnership by Phoenix Thoroughbreds and Goncalvo Torrealba’s Three Chimneys Farm.

“We are partners with Gainesway and Stonestreet in a couple of horses that we have bought, but this is our first partnership with Three Chimneys,” said Radcliffe after sharing a celebratory hug with Torrealba just outside of the pavilion. “We are absolutely delighted and very privileged to be involved with such a successful association.”

Radcliffe’s turf purchases tend to go to her husband, European trainer Jeremy Noseda, while her dirt purchases stay in America and are usually sent to Hall of Famer Bob Baffert. Since this colt is owned in partnership, his future trainer is still up in the air.

“We haven’t discussed it yet,” Radcliffe said. “We have to make a decision about what trainer he is going to go to, but obviously he is staying in the U.S.A.”

Hip 489 is the second foal out of SW Melody Lady (Unbridled’s Song), a daughter of MGISW Lady Tak (Mutakddim). The gray is a full-brother to the juvenile filly Buy Sell Hold, a $67,000 purchase by Kirk and Judy Robison at this auction last year. Trained by Steve Asmussen, she became the first winner for her freshman sire (by Medaglia d’Oro) with an impressive debut win at Keeneland this spring and defeated colts in the Kentucky Juvenile S. at Churchill in her next start.

“I knew he was a horse that everybody loved,” said John Sikura, whose Hill ‘n’ Dale Farm consigned the colt and bred him along with Stretch Run Ventures. “After $500,000, you are just guessing, but everybody was on the horse. We had a very minimal reserve. We knew the marketplace would take him at his value. He was judged fairly. It was a great result for a very high quality horse.”

Sikura added, “The sister won impressively at Keeneland and won a stake at Churchill against colts, so she really excited the page. We owned Lady Tak and this is a granddaughter of hers, so it is second generation which is especially rewarding, and the horse was bred and raised at the farm.”

Hill ‘n’ Dale also stands 2012 GI CashCall Futurity S. winner Violence, who is currently second in the North American freshman sires standings with 11 winners and three individual black-type winners, including recent Arlington-Washington Futurity victor and “TDN Rising Star” Barry Lee.

At $850,000, Hip 489 is the most expensive offspring by the young sire ever sold at auction, more than doubling the previous highest-price of $400,000, fetched by another Violence colt, the unraced Midnite Masquerade, from Baffert at this auction last year.

“The marketplace is not only judging today’s performance, but it is probably judging into the future that he is going to be substantial, serious horse,” Sikura said. “If you pay that kind of money for a yearling, you obviously think he is the kind of horse that can impart Grade I class to his offspring. We are thrilled with the way they have been accepted. We are thrilled that the people who have bred to him in the past have made money. We stood him for $15,000 and there is pressure to raise his stud fee, but we left it the same so everybody could prosper that had a nice horse. So far, so good. We have three individual stakes winners. We have winners on dirt and turf, winners at Del Mar and Saratoga. A little more than 20% of his crop has run, so we think the future is bright.” —@CDeBernardisTDN

FILLY MAKES SENSE TO ISAACS

Bridlewood Farm manager George Isaacs went to $750,000 to secure a filly by Street Sense out of Ithinkisawapudycat (Bluegrass Cat) during Tuesday’s session of the Keeneland September sale. The bay yearling (hip 359) is a half-sister to Grade I winner Sweet Loretta (Tapit).

“She’s a big, lovely filly out of a young mare and she’s a half to a Grade I winner,” Isaacs said. “There is a lot of 2-year-old precociousness in the family and she looks precocious. We were trying to buy a nice early 2-year-old type and she looks the part.”

Of the filly’s final price, Isaacs added, “It was a little more than I wanted to pay, but she’s a nice filly so I just had to dig a little deeper than I wanted to. It’s a done deal now, so we’ll hope for the best. The market is strong. It’s a seller’s market and she sold well, but we wanted her.”

The yearling was bred by Colts Neck Stables and Ashview Farm and was consigned by Ashview. The transaction marked the end of the breeders’ profitable relationship with the family. Ashview Farm purchased Ithinkisawapudycat for $240,000 at the 2012 Keeneland November sale. Her first foal was Sweet Loretta, who sold for $750,000 at the 2014 Keeneland November sale and went on to win the 2016 GI Spinaway S. Her second foal, Airtouch (Tapit), sold for $450,000 at last year’s Fasig-Tipton July Sale. Ashview and Colts Neck Stables sold Ithinkisawapudycat for $2.2 million at Keeneland November last fall.

Ashview’s Gray Lyster admitted it was bittersweet to now be completely divested of a family that had been so profitable.

“Frankly, if she hadn’t been so nice, we maybe would have kept her,” Lyster said. “But that’s what we are. We are commercial sellers and if they can bring that kind of money, we sell, regroup, pay for a couple of mistakes, pay for some expenses on the farm and buy some more.”

Of the yearling, Lyster added, “She was just a queen. I can say what they look like and what they vet like at the farm, but I don’t know how they are going to act here. And she came out and pricked her ears for every show and was fantastic for four days in a row. Everybody loved her.” @JessMartiniTDN

CHEVELEY PARK MAKES BIG RETURN TO THE BLUE GRASS

It had been about 12 years since Cheveley Park Stud Manager Chris Richardson made a trip to Kentucky to buy horses, but he made his presence felt Tuesday when going to $750,000 for a War Front filly (hip 400).

“I was very much at my limit,” said Richardson after signing the ticket out back. “I hoped to get her for a little less than that, I’ll admit. The quality fillies are bringing a good return. Let’s hope it is all worth while in due course.”

Richardson added, “I tried to buy four [Monday] and I was blown out every time. I was underbidder twice, so I was hoping to get something [Tuesday]. I have another couple on the list for [Tuesday] and [Wednesday], so we will see. We have bought some nice horses here and I hope to continue that.”

When asked what brought him back to Lexington after so many years, Richardson said, “I suppose having won the [GI] Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Turf last year with Queen’s Trust was a big influence as far as the [Cheveley Park] owners David and Patricia Thompson are concerned. Wesley Ward has probably got something to do with it with his successful raids in England, especially at Royal Ascot. There are a number of stallions now, who are becoming more appealing to the Europeans. It is exciting to be back.”

Consigned by Taylor Made, hip 400 is out of French stakes winner La Conseillante (Elusive Quality), who is also the dam of MGSP War Envoy (War Front). The dark bay’s third dam is champion and GI Kentucky Derby winner Winning Colors.

“She is a beautifully balanced filly,” Richardson said. “She is by War Front, who is doing extremely well all over the world. It is a lovely pedigree. We haven’t been here for a few years, but it is nice to come here and try to find something we can add to the broodmare band in due course and hopefully she will prove a successful racing prospect.”

Breeder Joseph Allen purchased La Conseillante privately in France prior to her stakes victory. He recently sold the mare for $87,000 at last year’s Keeneland November sale carrying a foal by Declaration of War and was quite pleased with her filly’s sale Tuesday.

“I was very happy with this,” Allen said. “This is a business where you have to sell, so I always sell some yearlings. Quite frankly, I want to bring something over here that is good. She is probably one of the best fillies that I had, so I decided to put her up here. I wish them all the luck in the world. Cheveley Park is a great outfit. I am glad they bought her.” —@CDeBernardisTDN

ABOUGHAZALE LANDS FOUR ON TUESDAY

While Oussama Aboughazale of International Equities Holdings, Inc. and Sumaya U.S. Stable failed to take home any yearlings during Monday’s frenetic Book 1 session, he and his team landed four colts on Tuesday for gross receipts of $1.6 million.

The priciest of those purchases was hip 319, a $725,000 colt from the second crop of promising young stallion Violence consigned by Warrendale Sales, Agent XL.

Out of debut winner Holiday Bertie (Harlan’s Holiday) from a family of graded performers for the Klein family, hip 319 was purchased for just $70,000 by bloodstock agent Ben McElroy and partners at last year’s Keeneland November sale.

“He’s a beautiful horse who sold his himself,” said Warrendale’s Kitty Taylor before noting that her operation also sold this year’s Del Mar Juvenile Turf S. hero Encumbered (Violence) at last year’s Fasig-Tipton July sale. “He’s a beautiful, lovely horse who hold himself on the hill. He had a lot of vetting, lot of interest–one of those kinds you enjoy selling.”

Aboughazale was accompanied by advisor Frances Relihan while bidding in the pavilion.

“Hopefully he’s a runner, but he looks like a runner,” Relihan said of hip 319. “We’re very pleased. Obviously we had to stretch–there was very heavy competition for him, five or six strong operations bidding on him, but Mr. Aboughazale loved him and we all loved him so we’re very, very glad to have him.”

Aboughazale revealed that the colt would be trained by Todd Pletcher, who conditions the likes of GII Rebel S. winner and ‘TDN Rising Star’ Malagacy (Shackleford) for Sumaya U.S.

Of the market so far, Relihan said, “We swung hard on three yesterday, but we got outbid, But we knew we had a few nice horses coming up today, so we didn’t lose faith. Yesterday there was incredible competition. We were obviously happy for the breeders and consignors, but on the buying end, it made things difficult.”

Aboughazale is a native of Jersusalem who resides mainly in Chile and whose family is the majority shareholder of the fresh produce division of Del Monte Fruit Company. He has been a player in American racing for years, but has been more active at recent U.S. auctions since purchasing a Kentucky farm late last year in conjunction with the retirement of his MGSW Protonico (Giant’s Causeway) to Taylor Made Farm.

Among his major outlays this term was the sale-topping $700,000 he paid for Violence’s winning 6-year-old half-sister Cinnamon Spice (Candy Ride {Arg}) at Fasig-Tipton February.

“We’ve been watching Violence, too,” said Relihan of the Hill ‘n’ Dale resident, who was represented by another big winner this past weekend in Arlington-Washington Futurity S. winner and ‘Rising Star’ Barry Lee. “We’re a fan his and he’s off to a good start, so we’re excited about this horse.”

@BDiDonatoTDN

SAVING THE ‘BEST’ BID FOR LAST

OXO Equine’s Larry Best made one $700,000 bid–and wasn’t going any higher–for hip 367, but that’s “all” it took to secure the Indian Creek-consigned Uncle Mo colt Tuesday afternoon.

“Number one, I like Uncle Mo–I bought one up at Saratoga, a colt [hip 114, for $700,000], so this is my second Uncle Mo colt,” Best said of his latest in a string of big-ticket purchases that began at this sale last year. “This one in particular had such an outstanding, big walk. He was a good physical–worth a bet.”

Best said someone had suggested that he go take a look at the colt, so he headed over to Barn 45 on Saturday to check him out.

“I immediately noticed the big walk,” he said. “I bought an Animal Kingdom [colt, hip 129, for $750,000] at Saratoga who had a similar big walk. Right now I’m betting on big walks. It doesn’t mean he’ll run, but we’ll see.”

Best purchased three yearlings during Monday’s lone Book 1 session for $3.41 million, including a $1.6-million War Front filly (hip 128) and a $1.25-million daughter of Medaglia d’Oro (hip 82).

Hip 367 was Best’s only acquisition on Tuesday.

The colt is out of an unraced Mineshaft half to GSWs Divine Oath (Broken Vow) and Auntie Joy (Uncle Mo). He hails from a big Phipps family–his fourth dam is Hall of Famer Personal Ensign (Mr. Prospector).

Hip 367 was acquired for $370,000 as a short yearling at Keeneland January by Key Palm Stable, who consignor Shack Parrish said was a new owner who wished to remain anonymous. @BDiDonatoTDN

WHITE BIRCH & COOLMORE TEAM UP FOR UNCLE MO COLT

White Birch Farm’s Peter Brant and Coolmore’s M.V. Magnier joined forces to acquire a son of Uncle Mo (hip 236) for $675,000 during the first session of Book 2 Tuesday afternoon. Trainer Chad Brown signed the ticket on behalf of the two operations.

The Albaugh family, who campaigned the likes of MGISW Brody’s Cause (Giant’s Causeway) and 2016 GI Breeders’ Cup Juvenile runner-up Not This Time (Giant’s Causeway), purchased hip 236’s dam, the SP Free Money (Street Sense), for $325,000 with this colt in utero at the 2015 Keeneland November sale.

“We loved Uncle Mo and were looking for mares in foal to him,” Dennis Albaugh said. “We put a number on him and we said, ‘Look, we will either put it in our racing program or we will let it go.’ It went to a number we were comfortable letting it go for and we were happy with it, so we have a big smile on our faces. I actually think the colt is going to go do very well. I couldn’t be happier that he is going to end up in Chad Brown’s barn.”

Consigned by Lane’s End, hip 236 is the first foal out of Free Money and hails from the family of MGISW sprinter and millionaire A.P. Indian (Indian Charlie) and GSW Tiz Shea D (Tiznow).

“We had him on the farm and raised him for the Albaugh family,” Lane’s End’s Allaire Ryan said. “He has a straight forward, good, solid physical and just made everyone’s lists. It was a healthy price for him. We are very happy.”

Ryan continued, “[The price] was above our expectations. We knew he was a nice colt coming in and you just hope when multiple people land on him like that, they just carry it behind your reserve and that is what happened.”

Peter Brant bred and campaigned 1988 champion sprinter Gulch and also bred his champion son Thunder Gulch, winner of the 1995 GI Kentucky Derby. He took some time away from racing to focus on polo and got back into the business in a big way last fall, buying several big figure purchases at the November sales and several other auctions across the globe since.

Brant also purchased hip 256, a $350,000 Quality Road filly from the family of MGISW Secret Status; hip 383, a $500,000 Candy Ride (Arg) filly from the family of MGISW sire Colonel John; hip 432, a $440,000 Medaglia d’Oro colt out of GISW Lighthouse Bay (Speightstown); and hip 452, a $140,000 Declaration of War filly from the family of GISW Got Lucky (A.P. Indy). —@CDeBernardisTDN

MATCHING SCORES FOR WOODS EDGE

Peter O’Callaghan’s Woods Edge Farm sent colts by Ghostzapper and Malibu Moon through the Keeneland sales ring Tuesday and both yearlings exited with matching final bids of $625,000.

First up was hip 321, a colt by Ghostzapper out of stakes winner Holy Blitz (Holy Bull), who sold to Shadwell Estate Company, Ltd. The yearling, a full-brother to sprint champion Judy the Beauty, was purchased by O’Callaghan as a weanling for $235,000 at last year’s Keeneland November sale.

“He’s a royally bred colt, that fella,” O’Callaghan said. “We had the mare on the farm for some time and that was the first time she was bred back to Ghostzapper. He was the closest thing to Judy the Beauty that she’s ever had. That’s really what sold him.”

Later in the session, hip 430, by Malibu Moon out of stakes winner Life Lesson (Unbridled’s Song), was acquired by trainer Todd Pletcher on behalf of Let’s Go Stable. The youngster was a $260,000 Keeneland November weanling purchase.

“He was a very strong individual by a top sire out of a top broodmare sire,” O’Callaghan said of the colt’s appeal as a weanling. “He was nice and we were very keen to get him. We had to stretch for him then. I wasn’t sure with the format change and drawing the first day [of Book 2], how it would work out. But he looked very impressive here. He got a lot of action. He was vetted maybe a dozen times and there were many interested parties on top of that.”

Pletcher added, “He’s just a beautiful colt; great mover, good pedigree. Just exactly what you’re looking for.”

Woods Edge also sold a colt by Into Mischief (hip 300) Tuesday. The yearling, purchased for $100,000 last November, sold for $300,000 to Courtlandt Farm.

“We’ve had four through today and we had three sell very well, but then we couldn’t have given away the other one and he was a very nice horse,” O’Callaghan said. “But that’s the nature of the game.”

O’Callaghan thinks some buyers have struggled to keep up with the large number of Book 2 horses spread over much of Keeneland’s expansive barn area.

“I was concerned about the first [Book 2] day,” O’Callaghan admitted. “The book is big and they are covering ground from barns 15 to 49–even if they are working day by day, the time it takes you to work from barn 15 to 49, it eats up a lot of your day. It puts people behind. The book is very daunting. It’s hard to get through.”

He continued, “I think a lot of people were behind and were playing catch-up to be ready for today. I’d say horses paid the price for it today, certainly in the first half of the day. But I would expect it to be better tomorrow. We feel like we’ve almost had more foot traffic for our second and third-day horses than we did our first day horses.” @JessMartiniTDN

GODOLPHIN STRIKES FOR DUBAWI COLT

It is not often an offspring of Dubawi (Ire) is offered at auction on these shores. In fact, the last time a yearling by the Godolphin stallion sold at Keeneland was when Lane’s End consigned a filly in the 2014 September sale, now named Eyeshine (GB), who sold to Flaxman Holdings for $1.45 million. Now three years later, Lane’s End returned with a Dubawi colt (hip 333), who summoned $650,000 from Sheikh Mohammed’s operation.

“He is an extremely nice horse, very well balanced and from a good farm,” Godolphin’s Anthony Stroud said after signing the ticket out back. “Dubawi is an outstanding stallion, who stands at one of Sheikh Mohammed’s farms. It is unusual to find one sired by him in the U.S., but you have to buy horses where you can. I think he is a very nice horse.”

As for the price, Stroud said, “I think it is around the right price. Time will tell, but I think so.”

The Godolphin team was back in action just moments later, going to $625,000 for a son of Super Saver (hip 334) out of an unraced half-sister to GSW and GISP “TDN Rising Star” Ocho Ocho Ocho (Street Sense). They also bought hip 224, a $490,000 Australia (GB) colt; hip 240, a $475,000 daughter of Uncle Mo; hip 314, a $300,000 Lookin at Lucky half-brother to GISW Collected (City Zip); hip 410, a $340,000 More Than Ready filly; and hip 460, a $300,000 son of Australia (GB).

Bred by St. Elias Stable and West Point Thoroughbreds, Hip 333 is a son of Icon Project, a daughter of GISW La Gueriere (Lord at War {Arg}) and a $775,000 yearling purchase at the 2006 renewal of this auction. She captured an off-the-turf renewal of the 2009 GIII New York S. and closed out her career on a high note with a victory in that term’s GI Personal Ensign S. at Saratoga.

Icon Project RNA’d for $1.45 million guineas with this colt in utero at the 2015 Tattersalls December sale. Shortly after, she was privately purchased by West Point’s Terry Finley, St Elias’s Vinnie Viola and Clay DeGuincito, a new member of West Point Thoroughbreds.

“I had done business with Andrew Rosen [owner of Icon Project] and I always loved that mare,” Finley said. “I remember her winning the Personal Ensign. I called them and we got a deal done very quickly. I partnered with Vinnie and I got a hedge fund guy from New York City in, who is actually a West Pointer and we are getting him into the business, so all three of us that bought her are West Point graduates.”

When asked why he chose to sell the horse here instead of in Europe, Finley said, “John Sparkman, who does a lot of work Vinnie brought up the idea, and we thought about it. We just figured most of the people that were going to be over there would be here, or we hoped that was the case. [Selling him in Europe] is probably the thing that a lot of people would have done, so we wanted to do something a little different. Plus, you save a trip over there.”

West Point was also active as buyers, teaming up with GMB Racing for a $360,000 Quality Road colt (hip 392) out of SW Kitty Wine (Lemon Drop Kid), who will go to Dallas Stewart; scooping up a Declaration of War colt (hip 168) for $90,000; and an Into Mischief colt (hip 475) for $255,000.

@CDeBernardisTDN

MEDAGLIA D’ORO COLT FOR WINCHELL

Ron Winchell, who was active as a seller during the first two days of the Keeneland September sale, got into the action as a buyer late in Tuesday’s session when going to $625,000 for a half-brother by Medaglia d’Oro to GI Kentucky Derby winner Mine That Bird (Birdstone) and GI Pacific Classic winner Dullahan ((Even the Score).

“Obviously he is out of a nice mare with a nice family,” Winchell said of hip 498. “We are obviously looking for Classic horses and that’s one reason we were looking at him. He is going to Steve Asmussen.”

Of the September market, Winchell added, “I think on the selling side for us, it’s been strong. On the buying side, it’s hard to find horses that fit our needs. So we are hoping tomorrow is a different day and we’ll see what happens.”

Consigned by Denali Stud, the son of Mining My Own (Smart Strike) was bred by Phil and Judy Needham, Bena Halecky and WinStar Farm. Mining My Own produced a colt by Pioneerof the Nile this year and was bred back to that WinStar stallion. @JessMartiniTDN

OXLEY HOPES HE STRUCK GOLD

Medaglia d’Oro has made quite a name for himself as the sire of top fillies thanks to Hall of Famer Rachel Alexandra, two-time champion Songbird, MGISWs Plum Pretty and New Money Honey, and recent GI Alabama S. heroine Elate, just to name a few. John Oxley hopes he has purchased the next superstar filly by the Darley sire in hip 369, who summoned $600,000 from the longtime owner at Keeneland Tuesday.

“The filly is absolutely gorgeous,” Oxley said after signing the ticket while seated alongside trainer Mark Casse. “She is by Medaglia d’Oro, who is your filly sire of the moment. She was incredible, just a lovely filly. She was very correct, very scopey. She looks like a Grade I winner to me.”

Consigned by Taylor Made, Hip 369 is out of MGSW Juanita (Mineshaft), who was purchased by breeders Aaron and Marie Jones for $1.2 million carrying a foal by Medaglia d’Oro at the 2013 Fasig-Tipton November sale. The resulting foal, the now-3-year-old Campioni sold for $250,000 to the China Horse Club at the 2015 renewal of this auction; and her now 2-year-old filly Shezaspanishdancer (Speightstown) was also a $250,000 purchase here by Tommy Town Thoroughbreds. Juanita produced a colt by Tiznow this year.

Oxley is also the owner of last year’s champion juvenile Classic Empire (Pioneerof the Nile), who has not been seen since finishing a close second in the GI Preakness S. May 20. The bay was a late scratch from the GI Belmont S. June 10 due to an abscess and was considered for both the GI betfair.com Haskell Invitational S. and GI Travers S., but did not make either race. He is currently at Casse’s training center in Ocala, FL, which was recently hit by Hurricane Irma.

“He is doing well,” said Oxley, who added that the Casse farm had weathered the storm well. “He is getting a pause in training because of the hurricane hitting Ocala, but he is very sound and will be returning to training within a week.”

As for what is next for the Eclipse winner, Oxley said, “We had this lull and gave him this time to be refreshed. We don’t have a particular target, but he will tell us when he is ready.”

@CDeBernardisTDN

SPEEDWAY ADDS SOME QUALITY

Bloodstock agent Marette Farrell, bidding on behalf of Peter Fluor and KC Weiner’s Speedway Stable, secured a colt by Quality Road for $525,000 early during Tuesday’s second session of the Keeneland September sale. The gray colt (hip 252), out of stakes winner Ghost Dancing (Silver Ghost), is a half-brother to Grade I winner Ascend (Candy Ride {Arg}) and to graded stakes placed Moro Tap (Tapit). He was bred and consigned by Arthur Hancock’s Stone Farm.

“We just thought he was extremely athletic, by an up-and-coming stallion, and bred by a master who has bred…how many Kentucky Derby winners? Three Kentucky Derby winners,” Farrell said. “So, it all made sense. Bob Baffert is very excited about him, he’ll be training him.”

Farrell was busy buying 2-year-olds for the Speedway Stable during the juveniles sales this past spring, but found bidding on the colts she wanted very competitive.

“We have a lot of fillies and we found it difficult to buy a colt at the 2-year-olds in training sales,” Farrell explained. “They said they would like to try to get a colt at the yearling sales, so they wouldn’t get beaten up at the 2-year-old sales.”

Fluor and Weiner’s operation campaigns GI Pacific Classic winner Collected (City Zip), who was a $170,000 purchase at the 2015 OBS March Sale.

“We’ve had a lot of success buying 2-year-olds,” Farrell said. “So that would be the main focus. But they are very good businessmen and their policy is, wherever we find a horse that we love, they are very happy to buy it.” @JessMartiniTDN

LIEBLONGS & THREE CHIMNEYS PARTNER UP ON POTN FILLY

A Pioneerof the Nile filly was the first to bring $500,000 during Tuesday’s Book 2 opener as Alex and JoAnn Lieblong partnered with Three Chimney Farm to take her home for that amount. Bred by WinStar Farm, the Mar. 17 foal was consigned by Lane’s End as hip 196.

The filly’s stakes-placed dam Expanse (Distant View) is already responsible for 2010 GI Travers S. hero Afleet Express (Afleet Alex); 2015 GI Alabama S. winner Embellish the Lace (Super Saver); and SW/MGSP Reporting for Duty (Deputy Commander). This is the immediate female family of GI Florida Derby winner Materiality (Afleet Alex), GSW and GI Kentucky Oaks runner-up My Miss Sophia (Unbridled’s Song) and MGSW Eye of the Tiger (American Chance).

The Lieblongs picked up Embellish the Lace here for $320,000 in 2013. She earned $441,540 on the track, and RNA’d for $1.9 million at the 2015 Fasig-Tipton November sale before bringing $2.4 million from China Horse Club in foal to Uncle Mo at that auction 12 months later.

“It’s kind of a neat family,” said Alex Lieblong after bidding alongside Three Chimneys Chairman Gonçalo Borges-Torrealba. “Her rear end reminded me a lot of Embellish the Lace–she has a lot of the same mannerisms, I thought, and she’s very athletic.”

Of the price paid, he said, “It was a tick higher [than I expected], but with that family I’m not surprised. She’ll have some residual value.”

This isn’t the first time the Lieblongs have partnered with Three Chimneys. They paired up on 2014 GII Saratoga Special S. winner and GI Hopeful S. runner-up I Spent It (Super Saver), who was a $600,000 Fasig-Tipton Florida 2-year-old buy. They also co-own 2-year-old colt King’s Revenge (Orb), who is in training with Steve Asmussen and was a $685,000 OBS April acquisition.

Lieblong said hip 196 could also end up in Hall of Famer Asmussen’s barn. @BDiDonatoTDN

DOUBLE SCORE FOR BETZ

Bill Betz enjoyed success as both a pinhooker and as a breeder Tuesday at Keeneland. The consignor admitted he thought he’d found a bargain when his pinhooking partnership acquired a colt by Violence for $30,000 at last year’s Keeneland November Sale. The purchase looked even better Tuesday when the yearling (hip 290) returned to the Keeneland sales ring to sell for $310,000 to Courtlandt Farm.

The dark bay colt is out of Grand Slam Girl (Grand Slam) and is a half-brother to multiple graded stakes winner Home Run Kitten (Kitten’s Joy).

“I just thought he was a nice horse,” Betz said of the yearling. “He was correct and a nice-moving horse. We love the stallion and we knew the half-brother Home Run Kitten was a very nice horse. I thought he was worth more than $30,000 at the time.”

Of the colt’s final price Tuesday, Betz added, “I didn’t know what to expect. We just bring them over here and hope to get lucky. I think that was a good score.”

Later in the session, Betz was co-breeder of a Scat Daddy filly (hip 483) who sold for $500,000 to Don Alberto Corporation. The yearling is out of Grade I winner Meadow Breeze (Meadowlake). Avocet Bloodstock purchased the mare, in foal to Bodemeister, for $150,000 at the 2013 Keeneland November sale. That Bodemeister colt, Royal Copy, was second in last year’s GI Hopeful S.

Also Tuesday, the Betz Thoroughbreds consignment sold a colt by Bernardini (hip 456) for $450,000 to Maverick Racing and China Horse Club. @JessMartiniTDN

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