Respite Farm Proves Small, But Mighty


Uncle Mo | Coolmore


Dr. Mike Cavey and his wife Dr. Nancy Temple have proven the old adage of quality over quantity. At their Respite Farm in Paris, Ky, the couple have been able to do a lot with a little, producing two champions and a Grade II-winning top young sire from a broodmare band of just seven. They will offer four weanlings from their boutique breeding operation at the upcoming Keeneland November Sale.

Cavey and Temple hit their first home run with a family they developed for five generations out of the first mare they ever purchased, Hot Slippers (Rollicking). Their patience and commitment to those bloodlines paid off as Hot Slippers is now the fourth dam of champion and top sire Uncle Mo.

Respite Farm sold the son of Indian Charlie for just $160,000 at Keeneland November and he took home an Eclipse Award after an undefeated juvenile season. Uncle Mo has proven equally talented since taking up stud duties at Coolmore's Ashford Stud, producing fellow champion juvenile and GI Kentucky Derby hero Nyquist in his first crop, as well as Grade II winner Laoban.

Standing at Darley, Nyquist is the leading first-crop sire by black-type winners, producing two Grade I scorers in his initial crop. Laoban is number three on that list and also has a top-level winner already thanks to GI Darley Alcibiades S. victress Simply Ravishing. He started his career in New York at Becky Thomas' Sequel New York, but will relocate to WinStar Farm in Kentucky for 2021.

“We've been lucky,” said Cavey, who also bred champion Champagne Room (Broken Row). “We were hoping Laoban would come back to Kentucky. We hope to be able to breed to him.”

Cavey and Temple have, of course, supported Uncle Mo at stud. For example, they bred the dam of Champagne Room, Lucky To Be Me (Bernstein), to the leading stallion and sold her to Japan's Katsumi Yoshida for $1.25-million at the 2017 KEENOV sale.

“We've had five generations of Uncle Mo's family and Champagne Room is the fourth generation of one of our families,” said Cavey, who also breeds cattle. “We bred Champagne Room's dam to Uncle Mo, which combined both of our families. She went to Japan and her son [Lucky Mo {Jpn}] broke his maiden [at first asking Oct. 17].”

In addition to breeding to Uncle Mo, Cavey and Temple have also supported his sons. In fact, one of their top prospects heading to the Keeneland November sale is a daughter of Nyquist.

Hip 943 is out of Cayman Sunrise (Petionville), who is a full-sister to MGSW Sailors Sunset and MSW Sailor's Sister. She is also the dam of SP Empire Power (Bodemeister).

“We have a Nyquist who is exceptional,” Cavey said. “She is a really, really nice filly. She is a half to a Bodemeister stakes horse we bred and raised. She may be as good as anything I've ever bred.”

Cavey was equally enthusiastic about Hip 1572, a daughter of Liam's Map. She is out of the Giant's Causeway mare Rooms, who is a half to SW Congo Kaye (Congaree) and GSP Westwood Pride (Pleasantly Perfect).

“We also have a Liam's Map filly out of a Giant's Causeway mare we bought as a broodmare prospect,” Cavey said. “It is a toss up as to which of those is the best. Sounds crazy, but I'd put either one of them up against Champagne Room, Uncle Mo or anything I've ever bred.”

Respite Farm's Keeneland November contingent also includes a Cairo Prince filly from the family of Champagne Room (Hip 1785) and Cross Traffic filly (Hip 3046) out of the Uncle Mo mare Jessica Clay.

The Keeneland November Sale kicks off Sunday, Nov. 9.

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