Ahead of Fasig November, Amy Moore Bids Queen Caroline a Heartfelt Farewell

Queen Caroline, the dam of champion Forte, will sell at the Fasig-Tipton November Sale | Sara Gordon

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The chances might be one in a million.

The odds of campaigning a multiple stakes winner from the first yearling you ever purchase are certainly pretty long. But to have that horse go on and produce a champion as her first foal, what are the chances?

Amy Moore, the owner of South Gate Farm in Millwood, Virginia, knows better than to take this experience for granted. Besides her childhood family pony, the first horse she ever owned was Queen Caroline. Purchased by Moore for $170,000 as a yearling in 2014, the daughter of Blame out of Queens Plaza (Forestry) was cleverly named after the episode in British history when the wife of King George IV was “blamed” for adultery and put on trial in the House of Lords. Queen Caroline would go on to earn over $400,000, claiming five stakes victories for Michael Matz.

After she retired to Moore's small Virginia farm, the mare's first foal–and the first horse that Moore ever bred–was Forte. The son of Violence went on to be a Breeders' Cup and Eclipse Award-winning juvenile and one of the top sophomores of 2023.

“It has really been a thrill,” Moore reflected. “My sister, niece and I all came to Lexington for the Breeders' Cup last year, so we were there to see him win the Juvenile. Forte definitely has the mare's personality. Queen Caroline is a mare that knows who she is and she's number one in any field that she's ever been in. I think he has that too and it shows in these incredible victories where it looks like he's beaten at the top of the stretch and he gets up to win.”

Soon, the final chapter of Moore's fairytale story with Queen Caroline will come to a close when the Grade I-producing mare goes through the ring on Nov. 7 at the Fasig-Tipton November Sale. The sale of Moore's once-in-a-lifetime mare will make it possible for the breeder to further her boutique broodmare band for many years to come.

Sara Gordon

“It's definitely bittersweet,” Moore admitted. “She's done as much for me as any horse could possibly do. I'm running a business so I have to make decisions with those considerations in mind and she's really become too valuable to keep her in Virginia on my little farm.”

Offered in foal to Flightline, Queen Caroline will sell as Hip 171 with Bluegrass Thoroughbred Services. The mare has spent the last year with consignor John Stuart at his Chanteclair Farm in Versailles. Stuart reiterated that the mare has the attitude of racing royalty.

“She's definitely the queen,” he said. “She was really competitive on the racetrack and now she bosses everybody around in the pasture. She's a really pretty mare–16'1 ½ inches, a strong body, correct. She's got a really nice eye and head to her and just a lot of class.”

Stuart said that Queen Caroline's second foal shares the same confident air as his dam and half brother. A son of Uncle Mo, the colt now named Dr. Park sold for $850,000 last year to Mayberry Farm. Now in training with John Shirreffs, the juvenile is putting in regular works at Santa Anita ahead of his debut.

Meanwhile Queen Caroline had a stretch of bad luck when her third foal was born dead last year and she then ended up losing her foal this year due to the effects of the setback in 2022. Stuart attested to the 10-year-old mare's capability as a broodmare going forward.

“I'm confident that she's good to go and is going to have a lot of foals in a row because she's young and she's fertile,” he said. “Every year that she's been bred, she's been bred one time except for the second year when she had the Uncle Mo, when she was bred twice.”

Bred on an early Feb. 24 cover date, Queen Caroline will be one of the first mares at public auction to be offered in foal to undefeated Flightline. Last year's Horse of the Year, the new Lane's End stallion holds an esteemed place at Fasig-Tipton as a $1 million graduate of their Saratoga Sale.

Queen Caroline and her paddock mate First Passage (Giant's Causeway) | Sara Gordon

Flightline is a very special horse to everybody in the industry,” said Fasig-Tipton's president and CEO Boyd Browning. “He captivated our imagination like no other horse has in my 35 years of being involved in the Thoroughbred industry. I think everybody around the world is excited to see the potential that Flightline possesses as a stallion.”

Another important component of Queen Caroline's resume, Browning said, is her pedigree. The mare's family includes Essential Quality and Contrail (Jpn), both champions at two and three in their native countries who are now embarking on their stud careers.

“The sky is the limit in terms of what could be happening within this pedigree,” Browning said. “It's already an exceptional pedigree. She's by Blame, who is emerging as one of the best broodmare sires in the world, and you've got Seattle Slew in the pedigree. But we could look up in 10 years and say the pedigree has exploded. Forte has become a great stallion or Contrail has become a great stallion. And who knows what else is going to happen with her own produce with the potential she possesses. It's a power-packed pedigree and the future is very bright for Queen Caroline.”

“I think anybody in the world could buy Queen Caroline,” he continued. “I would be hesitant to predict who the buyer would be or where they'll be from. She has truly international appeal. Her first foal is one of the best horses of the 3-year-old crop and a champion 2-year-old last year and her second foal brought $850,000, so she's the complete package of what you're looking for in terms of a commercial broodmare. She's going to be coveted by virtually every major breeder in the world.”

In the days leading up to Queen Caroline's sale, Moore will be watching from Virginia as Forte looks to make his bid in the Breeders' Cup Classic. The breeder will make the trip to Lexington to watch her star mare go through the ring and hopefully from there, come home with one or two new additions to her small broodmare band.

“I'm sure Queen Caroline will go to a very good home,” Moore said. “That will be a comfort to me, to know she's well taken care of and she's getting the best in terms of breeding opportunities. I think her future buyer will have a very nice mare and will get some really nice foals from her.”

Even when she no longer owns the mare, Moore said she will always be proud to be listed as the breeder of Forte as he furthers his career on the racetrack and hopefully someday, the stud barn.

“It's been a roller coaster,” she said of Forte's campaign. “I'm sure Forte's owners can say the same. There have been a lot of ups and downs, as there always are in the horse business, but it's been a lot of fun to watch a really good horse compete and to own his dam. I will miss that, but I hope to produce another one and go around again someday. As soon as I have a chance, my mares will be going to Forte.”

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