Sid Fernando

Taking Stock: Notes on Medina Spirit and Breeders Hertrich lll and Fielding

As I sat down to write this column Monday, I got a text from a bloodstock agent that said, "Heard Medina Spirit broke down at Santa Anita a little while ago. Gonna be a shit storm." I checked Twitter right away, but there was nothing yet about Medina Spirit (Protonico). I didn't have to wait long. Some minutes later, the "I heard Medina Spirit..." tweets started trickling out, and then the dam burst. Everyone had something to say, and most of it was derogatory or innuendo about his trainer, Bob...

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Taking Stock: New Kentucky Stallions at $10,000

Back in March of 2009, in the Werk Thoroughbred Consultants blog, the late Jack Werk recounted a wager we'd made years earlier. This is what he wrote: "The year that Elusive Quality went to stud, pedigree expert Sid Fernando and I had a small side bet: Who was the best sleeper or long shot from that crop? Sid picked Distorted Humor, standing for $12,500, a pretty astute choice at the time. I, of course, picked Elusive Quality, who also went to stud very cheap--$10,000. "As it turns out, we both picked wisely! The top two...

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Taking Stock: Misbranding Case Doomed By Fed Error

Expeditiously I be on my Grizzly Feds try to creep me somehow always miss me --Mr. Fantastik, from the MF DOOM song "Anti-Matter" on the King Geedorah album "Take Me To Your Leader" If you're not hip to the slang in the lyrics above, Mr. Fantastik is essentially saying that the Feds are after him while he's on his grind, but they can't quite get him. There's an implication in there that the Feds are incompetent, but that's more evident from Mr. Fantastik's delivery. Trainer Murray Rojas can probably relate...

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Taking Stock: Liam's Map Flying Unbridled's Song Flag

We've been waiting a long time for a high-class son of Unbridled's Song to make a statement at stud and stick around to carry his name forward in pedigrees, and that horse appears to be Lane's End's Liam's Map, who got his fourth Grade l winner over the weekend. Unbridled's Song was a terrific stallion and his daughters have made him one of the best broodmare sires around, but he's had difficulties finding sons at stud as good as his daughters. He's had some that showed glimmers of talent, and...

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Taking Stock: Gun Runner Flexes Candy Ride/Storm Cat Nick

Two sons of Candy Ride (Arg)--Gun Runner and Twirling Candy--were represented by three 2-year-old Grade l winners over the weekend, and do you know one thing they had in common? Each was produced by a Storm Cat-line mare. This affinity for the Storm Cat line was also an important feature of Candy Ride's own success, and breeders appear to be copying that formula with his sons. It's not surprising; it's something that usually happens when a stallion is successful with the females of another sire line, and this type of...

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Taking Stock: A Weekend to Remember

Everything that top-class racing should be was on display over the last weekend. The six Grade l races at Saratoga on Saturday featured most of the leading horses in each division except older dirt males, and as a group they didn't disappoint, did they? Nor did their trainers. One race after another was dramatically decided at or close to the wire, and some of the runners-ups, including the Steve Asmussen-trained Midnight Bourbon (Tiznow) in the Gl Runhappy Travers S. and the Todd Pletcher-conditioned Life is Good (Into Mischief) in the...

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Taking Stock: Postcard from the Spa

The contrast between NYRA's Saratoga and the Churchill Downs, Inc.-owned Arlington couldn't be greater. While the latter died an ignominious death over the weekend, punctuated by Arlington president Tony Petrillo outrageously booting deadline photographers and writers, including this publication's Alan Carasso, from the press box 90 minutes after the completion of the race formerly known as the Gl Arlington Million, Saratoga--or the Spa, as it's known--is flourishing under solid management. The upstate New York track has been welcoming fans at full capacity since it opened for the season after the...

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Taking Stock: Kentucky Stud Farms Invested in Candy Ride Sons

Candy Ride (Arg), by Ride the Rails from Candy Girl (Arg), by Candy Stripes, came from Argentina, where he was a champion miler, and quickly established himself as both a high-class racehorse with a win in the Gl Pacific Classic and as a sire here in a similar way that Forli (Arg) and Lord At War (Arg) did before him. Make no mistake, it was quite a feat, because South American-bred racehorses, no matter how successful they are on the track in North America, most often whiff at stud in...

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Taking Stock: Amr Zedan Has Arrived

Three of the first four finishers in the Gl Kentucky Derby were owned by Middle Eastern entities. The beaten favorite in fourth, Essential Quality (Tapit), races for the global Godolphin operation of UAE's Sheikh Mohammed, whose recently deceased brother Sheikh Hamdan's Shadwell had won the GI Longines Kentucky Oaks a day earlier with Malathaat (Curlin). The Derby runner-up, Mandaloun (Into Mischief), flies the famous green and pink silks of Juddmonte, whose longtime owner, Saudi businessman Prince Khalid Abdullah, passed away earlier this year but whose future rests with his eldest...

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Taking Stock: Breeders Robertson, Gonzalez Elevate Dialed In's Profile

Somewhere on the grounds of OBS on Tuesday, the two unacquainted men who bred Dialed In's (Mineshaft) only two Grade l winners to date--Gl Kentucky Derby-bound Get Her Number and Super Stock--quite likely passed each other unaware of the other in that random way of the universe that plays with degrees of separation. I assume this because I was on the phone with Phil Robertson, who co-bred Get Her Number with his wife Brenda, when Pedro "Pete" Gonzalez, the co-breeder of Super Stock with his grandson P.J. Gonzalez, phoned me....

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Taking Stock: Street Sense Poised for Big Years

"He's technically full," said Darley America sales manager Darren Fox the other day, discussing Gl Kentucky Derby winner Street Sense (Street Cry {Ire}), who's standing this year for $60,000, down from $75,000 in 2020. "If you had a nice mare, there's a couple of spots that mares haven't been named yet. We keep him at around 140 mares. He was very hard to manage the demand, especially last year at 75, and he's 60 now, but that's because of overall market conditions. It wasn't a reflection of cooling off on...

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Taking Stock: Midnight Bourbon's American Lines

Throughout time, American bloodstock has been continually infused with new blood from other countries, just as a long history of immigration has made this country a melting pot of cultures. But these things come at some cost, don't they? What of the more or less original American sire and dam lines that have been subverted by the newer arrivals? Who's looking out for their interests as they get forgotten and cast aside? The Tiznow colt Midnight Bourbon, who is on the Gl Kentucky Derby trail after winning the Glll Lecomte...

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