Tapit Scales Historic New Peak

And suddenly it feels as though the milestones have run out, leaving the road ahead tapering to some unmapped horizon. Because from now on, every dime earned by the progeny of Tapit will take him deeper into record territory. The success of Perfect Grace in a maiden at Saratoga on Saturday--and neither the setting nor the mating that produced this filly, with Horse of the Year Havre De Grace (Saint Liam), could be more commensurate with the moment--took their collective haul past the late Giant's Causeway's current tally of $173,015,900...

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This Side Up: Tiz the Story of a True Magician

Nothing, it seems, will help you see through the vanity of materialism quite like a $4.1 billion fortune. A few summers ago, I was sitting alone in the baronial boardroom at Spendthrift, waiting to interview the farm's owner. It was a hot day, but here all was panelled cool, the venerable furnishings slumbering through the prosperous drone of a lawnmower. I was thinking about this apt conflation of heritage and modernity when startled by the entry of a tanned octogenarian whose casual apparel, in the round, must have cost rather...

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Summer Sale Set to Kickstart New Season at Deauville

There is a hint that normalcy is returning to the Deauville sales ring, with the Arqana Summer Sale back up to its normal two-day stand beginning on June 30. A quality mix of 593 National Hunt and Flat horses plus wild cards are slated to be offered over the next two days, and the unraced 2-year-olds were put through their paces over the Deauville-La Touques Racecourse on June 29. The juveniles kick start the sale, which begins at 11 a.m. on Wednesday, and continues with 156 young store horses and...

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Lessons from a Stallion Consultant

Grade I-producing sire Laoban is off to a fast start in Kentucky as he nears the completion of his first book at WinStar Farm. Meanwhile, his son Keepmeinmind, one of two graded winners for the son of Uncle Mo, readies for his bid in Saturday's GI Preakness S. "He has settled in and is doing really well," WinStar's President and CEO Elliott Walden said. "He's going to breed around 140 mares this year." The transition from Laoban's original stud farm, Sequel Stallions in New York, to WinStar was a breeze,...

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California Sire Vronsky Passes Away

Successful California-based stallion Vronsky (Danzig--Words of War, by Lord at War {Arg}), the sire of Grade I winner What A View, passed away from an apparent heart attack after successfully covering a mare at Harris Farms, according the farm's General Manager Jonny Hilvers. Vronsky was 22 years old. Bred by Arthur Hancock and Stonerside Ltd., Vronsky was a $1-million purchase out of the 2000 Keeneland September Sale and was a three-time winner at the races before entering stud in 2005 at E. W. 'Buddy' Johnston's Old English Rancho in Sanger,...

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Orpen Dies at 25 In Argentina

Orpen (Lure--Bonita Francita, by Devil's Bag), a leading sire in South America since his arrival on the continent in the mid-2000s, passed away Jan. 26 following emergency colic surgery, Turf Diario reports. He was 25 years old. A $525,000 Keeneland November weanling purchase in 1996, around the same time his half-brother Jules (Forty Niner) won the GIII Nashua S. in New York, Orpen annexed the 1998 G1 Prix Morny in the colors of John Magnier and entered stud in Ireland for the 2000 breeding season. Also a half-brother to SW...

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Jockeys and Jeans Great American Stallion Season Sale to Benefit PDJF

The Jockeys and Jeans Great American Stallion Season Sale will once again benefit the PDJF and this year will offer both Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse stallions. The auction begins Jan. 29 at 9 a.m. and ends Feb. 1 at 5 p.m on A season preview will be available Jan. 28. All seasons sold, their buyers and their prices are private. All seasons are non-guaranteed and donors have the option of including a breed-back the following year if the buyer's mare does not get in foal on first cover.

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Big Books and Breaking Records

The setting of new sire records in the modern era tends more than not to be a direct consequence of ever-greater book sizes. But they must still be acknowledged as legitimate breeding benchmarks as they will inevitably feature some outstanding performances. Just look at Mehmas (Ire)'s tally of first-crop 2-year-old winners this term. Currently on 56 winners, he is already 17 clear of Iffraaj's old record and in normal circumstances we might be entitled to expect his record to stand for many years. It may well do, but his strike...

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Midlantic Stallion Redeemed Relocated to Texas

Century Acres Farm, located near Hempstead, Texas, will stand Redeemed (Include--Early Mass, by Pleasant Tap) for the 2021 season. The multiple graded stakes winner previously stood at Northview Stallion Station in Maryland. Winner of the GII Brooklyn H. and GIII Greenwood Cup S. at four, as well as the GIII Discovery H. at three, Redeemed won five black-type events overall and placed in another three, including the 2012 GI Donn H. Racing in the colors of Jay Em Ess Stable for conditioner Richard Dutrow, Jr., he retired after the 2012...

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This Side Up: If You Can Run, You Won't Have to Hide

"When you figure it out, let me know." Those were the parting words of a highly esteemed breeder this week, after we exchanged a few thoughts on the diminishing viability of stallions once they have covered their first book of mares. Not that "diminishing," as an adjective, is really equal to the case. I suppose you could diminish down a lift shaft, but it wouldn't be the first word that would occur to you in the time available. Spoiler alert: I haven't figured it out. But I think I know...

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Spendthrift Releases Reduced Stud Fees for '21

Spendthrift Farm announced Tuesday the reduction of stud fees for most of its current roster of stallions set to stand at the Lexington-based farm in 2021. Leading sire Into Mischief (Harlan's Holiday) heads the roster at a previously announced fee of $225,000 S&N. Booked full, he represents the only stallion with an increased fee in 2021. Top sire Malibu Moon (A.P. Indy) and second-season sire Omaha Beach will both stand for $35,000 S&N. Malibu Moon stood for $60,000, while Omaha Beach stood for $45,000 in 2020. Fellow second-season sire Vino...

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Foal Crop Dips Again in 2020

The Jockey Club (TJC) released breeding statistics Monday, which indicate that the 2020 North American foal crop will be about 20,500, a 3.4% decrease from the prior year. A total of 1,552 North American stallions covered 31,198 mares in 2019. The matings have resulted in 19,677 live foals of 2020, a figure that is 3.4% lower than the one reported at this time last year. Through Sept. 29, the number of live foals reported is estimated to be approximately 85-90% complete. The number of stallions declined 4.8% from the 1,630...

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