De Meric's Odyssey Brings Him 'Home' To Horses

The island is still there, nearly 50 years later, which would have surprised Nick de Meric at the time. He'd have assumed that there could be nothing left by now. "Because they were basically mining it off the map," he recalls. "It was made of iron ore. So they had these massive Euclid trucks, wheels high as a building. And all these men on shift work, living in long huts. Not quite a prison environment, but it was all-male, tropical heat, nothing to do but drink beer and play cards....

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Finding The Right Syndicate For You-Part 2, Presented By Taylor Made Partnerships

The Midwestern sage, Mark Twain espoused, "The secret of getting ahead is getting started." Nothing could be more apropos when considering joining a Thoroughbred racehorse partnership. Getting started is the hardest part for most prospective owners. The world of Thoroughbred racing can seem as inaccessible as the Churchill Downs Turf Club on Derby Day. The good news is joining a partnership makes getting started easier. In the first part of this series, we provided basic information such as investment levels, tax considerations and the entertainment value partnerships offer. In Part...

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Different Hats Keep McDonald Ever Hopeful

Perhaps it is called the Hopeful Stakes because that's the most anyone can ever be with a Thoroughbred. But if nearly any purchaser at Keeneland over the next couple of weeks would like to be contesting that race, a year from now, then one consignor might give them not just hope but something closer to confidence. Okay, so a trifecta for Eaton Sales graduates in the Saratoga Grade I last year featured only the winner, Forte (Violence), from the 2021 Keeneland September Sale. Runner-up Gulfport (Uncle Mo) and third Blazing...

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The X-Ray Files: Ciaran Dunne

Ciaran and Amy Dunne's Wavertree Stables is perennially one of the leading consignors of 2-year-olds in the country, but their process for buying pinhooking prospects at the yearling sales changed dramatically with the advent of the sales repository over two decades ago. "We started buying yearlings before the repository," Ciaran Dunne said. "Back in those days, you had to shorten down your vet list because of the costs involved. There was very little that we couldn't live with because we might vet, at the very most, four horses a day....

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Hard Spun Colt 'Rockets' To Top At Workmanlike OBS June Opener

OCALA, FL - The Ocala Breeders' Sales Company's June Sale of 2-Year-Olds in Training duly marched through its opening session with a $450,000 son of Hard Spun one of three horses to top the $200,000 mark Tuesday in Ocala. At the close of business Tuesday, 192 juveniles had sold for a gross of $7,110,400. The average of $37,033 was up from the 2022 session's final average of $34,431--which included post-sale transactions--but was down from the end-of-session figure of $38,628. The median of $20,000 dipped from the final figure of $22,000,...

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Thormans Looking Forward To The Next Chapter At Trickledown Stud

The husband-and-wife team of Paul and Sara Thorman at Trickledown Stud, one of the most recognisable names in any sales catalogue, have revealed a change of emphasis that will see the operation concentrate more on pinhooking rather than breeding in the coming years.  Trickledown consigned over 300 horses annually in its pomp but, after reducing the broodmare band to just four ahead of the breeding season, Paul explained how he and his wife Sara will bid to enjoy life a bit more whilst running a more streamlined version of the...

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'Trainers Are Finding It Tough But You Can't Wave a Magic Wand'

One of the most respected racing and bloodstock journalists in Britain and Ireland for over 20 years, Ryan McElligott bid adieu to the press room at the Goffs November Breeding Stock Sale as he embarked on his new role as Chief Executive of the Irish Racehorse Trainers Association. Admitting there was some emotion surrounding the move, McElligott looks back on over 20 years reporting on the sport he loves and looks ahead to the challenges he faces in his new position as the IRTA chief.  The 41-year-old wears many hats....

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Stony Point Bloodstock Brings New Investors to Racing

A group of 15 businesspeople from across the U.S. visited Lexington's horse country this past weekend to get their first taste of all the racing industry has to offer. The enthusiastic group represented Stony Point Bloodstock, which was launched last year by Chilly Bleak Farm's Jim Fitzgerald, Bill Baxter, a veterinarian from Grand Rapids, Michigan, and his son Matt Baxter, founder of a human resource technology startup called Wedge. The trio started the partnership with the goal of setting up a for-profit pinhooking group that would also create an experience...

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Tacher, a True Jack of All Trades

There is not much Marc Tacher hasn't tried his hand at in the horse racing industry. The native of Puerto Rico breeds, buys and races horses; owns part of a racetrack; and pinhooks. He hopes to enjoy more pinhooking success Wednesday as he sends three juveniles through the ring at the Fasig-Tipton Gulfstream Sale. Growing up in Puerto Rico, Tacher was bit by the racing bug at a young age and made his first investment in the game early in his adult years. "I got into horse racing early. As...

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Juvenile Market Crash Not the Full Picture

Last year, an ongoing bull run in the North American bloodstock market carried the juvenile sector to a historic breakthrough. For the first time, aggregate turnover broke the $200 million barrier. The momentum felt so giddy that the next milestone, with the mean cost of a 2-year-old standing at $95,807, promised to be a six-figure average. No market, of course, can sustain perennial growth. Capitalism requires recession to regenerate value. While these cycles will ideally be mild, this particular market is always especially exposed to any incipient weakness. Very often,...

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A 'Whale' of a Start for Miller, Elser & Partners With NZ Venture

Joe Miller and Kip Elser are no strangers to success in the American bloodstock business. In a 15-year stint with Kern Thoroughbreds, Miller has helped manage the racing and breeding operations of Tracy Farmer and Len Riggio's My Meadowview Farm, while Elser's Kirkwood Stables' graduates include GI Kentucky Oaks winners Plum Pretty (Medaglia d'Oro), Keeper Hill (Deputy Minister) and Gal In a Ruckus (Bold Ruckus); the top-level winning half-siblings Sharp Cat (Storm Cat) and Royal Anthem (Theatrical {Ire}); and GI Breeders' Cup Classic hero Alphabet Soup (Cozzene). Always ready to...

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