2023 Mating Plans, Presented by Spendthrift: A Selection From Flightline's Book

Flightline | Sara Gordon photo

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The most exciting and highest-priced horse to go to stud in 2023, at a fee of $200,000, Flightline has amassed a book of mares as deep as any in recent memory for a first-season sire. We sat down with Lane's End Bloodstock's David Ingordo to hear about just 10 of those famous mares–a tough number to narrow down in a book so full of riches.

“We've got a ton of great support for the horse, from Eclipse Award-winning owner-breeders to successful commercial breeders,” said Ingordo. “We went out and bought five mares to support him, spending $4.5 million to do so. The book is a phenomenal first-season book, and it's hard to name all the good mares going to him. I have chosen just a few here, and we have just scratched the surface. It's such a deep, exciting group, both young mares off the track and proven producers like Queen Caroline, the dam of 2-year-old champion Forte (Violence).”

Ingordo said that a lot of thought went into what the champion's book size would be, and that many factors had to be balanced before a decision was reached by the Lane's End team, which included Bill Farish, Ingordo, Jill McCully, Chris Knehr and Bill's son, Will Farish III.

“We've committed to keeping him right at 150 mares,” said Ingordo. “We felt at the price for which we're standing him, that's a fair number. We need him to have enough mares that he has a chance, but we don't want people breeding to the horse at a very high stud fee to think they don't have exclusivity. The Lane's End policy and that of everyone in the ownership group has never favored big books, and that's how we agreed upon that number.”

With that in mind, Ingordo kicks off Flightline's book with two mares from one of the world's best operations: Juddmonte.

OBLIGATORY (5, Curlin-Uno Duo, by Macho Uno). Obligatory is a maiden mare by Curlin from one of their very, very deep families that they have curated for so long. She's the winner of the GI Derby City Distaff S., and a multiple graded stakes winner who placed in filly classics like the [GI] Acorn S. and the [GI] Cotillion S., amongst other races. She is the typical great Juddmonte race filly and this offspring will obviously go into their racing stable. We're very excited to have a mare like this.

PAULASSILVERLINING (11, Ghostzapper-Seeking the Silver, by Grindstone). Paulassilverlining is the other mare Juddmonte is sending us. She is the winner of the GI Humana Distaff S. at Churchill and the GI Madison S. at Keeneland. She placed in the GI Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Sprint. Paulassilverlining has already produced Artorius (Arrogate) as her first foal, who was a nice late-developing 3-year-old that looks like he could be a force either sprinting or in the handicap ranks next year. She is a Juddmonte mare they purchased for Arrogate in the past, and to get her in Flightline's book is nice.

ROYAL FLAG (7, Candy Ride {Arg}-Sea Gull, by Mineshaft). From Lane's End, we're breeding one of our best maiden mares off the track, Royal Flag. She is a third-generation mare from Mr. Farish's breeding program. She won the GII Beldame S. and the GIII Shuvee S. and was placed in the GI Personal Ensign S. Royal Flag is a great physical and we love the cross with Flightline over Candy Ride mares or Gun Runner mares, because Candy Ride over Tapit seems to be working well, so we're doing that cross here. She's a beautiful maiden mare owned by Mr. Farish who is a half-sister to the very promising Lane's End first-crop 2-year-old sire of 2023, Catalina Cruiser.

QUEEN CAROLINE (10, Blame-Queens Plaza, by Forestry). Befitting Flightline–the co-highest rated horse in history along with Frankel, and now Horse of the Year–we are breeding him to the mare who produced the three-time Grade I winner and champion Forte (Violence). Forte is an exceptional prospect for the classics as well as down the road as a stallion, and so that Queen Caroline is going to Flightline is exciting. Her pedigree goes back to horses that Mr. Farish has had his hands on, like Jeano, and champions Folklore and Essential Quality hail from this family. That Queen Caroline is now coming to the most important stallion we've ever retired brings this pedigree back into association with the farm. There are three champions under the first four dams and we're very excited about having her in the book.

DELIGHTFUL QUALITY (14, Elusive Quality-Contrive, by Storm Cat). Speaking of the family of Queen Caroline, Flightline will be bred to Delightful Quality, a daughter of Elusive Quality and the dam of Essential Quality, by Tapit. Essential Quality, of course, was a champion 2-year-old and 3-year-old, a classic winner of the GI Belmont S., the GI Breeders' Cup Juvenile, the GI Runhappy Travers S., among many other races. This is another mare from the same family as Forte and not a one-hit wonder; she's also the dam of dual stakes winner Famed (Uncle Mo), who looks to be ready to have a good 2023 as well.

SHAMROCK ROSE (8, First Dude-Slew's Quality, by Elusive Quality). We are blessed that the Japanese have taken a strong interest in Flightline and they have committed Shamrock Rose, who was purchased by KI Farm for $3 million at the Keeneland November sale. She was the Champion Female Sprinter of 2018 after winning the GI Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Sprint, along with multiple other stakes. We purchased a War Front yearling out of the mare and are quite happy with how he is training at this stage.

JUJU'S MAP (4, Liam's Map-Nagambi, by Flatter).This filly has a big pedigree. She was the winner of the GI Darley Alcibiades S. at two, and was second in the GI Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies. In addition to having a lot of 2-year-old form, she is a beautiful physical, an Albaugh family runner and another exciting young mare off the track that we think really fits Flightline.

BELL'S THE ONE (7, Majesticperfection-Street Mate, by Street Cry). Multiple graded stakes winner. She's the Grade I winner of the Derby City Distaff, and placed in the GI Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Sprint. She was a tough and durable racemare, campaigned from two to six, with 13 wins. She's also a very pretty filly with a good family with which we have a lot of experience. This is a Ned Evans family, and a mare who I just loved on the track and worked hard to get into his book. I raced her sire Majesticperfection under Padua Stables with Satish Sanan, and thought he was a very underrated stallion, and this is arguably his best offspring to date. I thought she was one of the best fillies out there. She was one of the top mares I wanted to get into his book, and I really like the cross. Sid Fernando at Werk Thoroughbred Consultants was very helpful. We did some research work with him on pedigrees that would work well at the sale, including Bell's The One, and he's been a big help in crafting Flightline's book.

POLLY FREEZE (10, Super Saver-Elusive Gold, by Strike the Gold). Polly Freeze is a proven mare from Hertrich and Fielding, the breeders of Eclipse Award winners. She is the dam of Americanrevolution (Constitution), the winner of the GI Cigar Mile H. with earnings of $1.2 million. She's has a wonderful pedigree. Americanrevolution is by a son of Tapit, so this mating makes a lot of sense. She is also the dam of another winner, Bold Journey (Hard Spun) and I own the 3-year-old, Paleta (Collected), for whom we have high hopes. She's a proven mare with a good family from outstanding breeders.

LITTLEPRINCESSEMMA (17, Yankee Gentleman-Exclusive Rosette, by Ecliptical). From the Summer Wind broodmare band of Flightline's breeder and co-owner Jane Lyon, we have one of her crown jewels, Littleprincessemma, the dam of none other than Triple Crown winner and sire American Pharoah. She is also the dam of Grade I-placed American Cleopatra (Pioneerof the Nile), GI Starlet S. winner Chasing Yesterday (Tapit) and Flightline's paddock mate as a baby, Triple Tap (Tapit).

EDGEWAY (6, Competitive Edge-Magical Solution, by Stormin Fever). A new acquisition on behalf of Summer Wind for Flightline's book was Edgeway, purchased at Keeneland November for $1.7 million. John Sadler thought she was an exceptionally talented filly–a tough runner who raced from three to five for Hronis Racing. She was second in the GI Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Sprint, and was a multiple graded stakes winner over her three seasons of racing. She comes from a deep family of tough, classy graded stakes runners in New York and California. Flightline always seemed to have an affinity for her; when she was walking around John Sadler's shedrow, he'd always look at her and nicker.

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