Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Part One: 2012 Fasig-Tipton Texas Two-Year-Olds In Training Sale

All videos by Mary Cage

Fasig-Tipton has been around longer than any other Thoroughbred auction company, having been originated in 1898 by William B. Fasig and Edward A. Tipton. One of three Fasig-Tipton sales offered in the Lone Star State annually, the 2012 Fasig-Tipton Texas Two-Year-Olds in Training Sale will offer 124 juveniles on April 5 (150 were entered), many of which are Louisiana- and Kentucky-breds. Despite the sale not being of the same caliber as many Fasig-Tipton sales, the catalogue has plenty of quality of two-year-olds available and appears to be one of the most intriguing catalogues of this specific sale to date.

One of my very favorite things to do is analyze the pedigrees of horses entered in sales and then hopefully observe them in person. I have now attended the Fasig-Tipton Texas juvenile under-tack show three times.

On a special note, the Fasig-Tipton Texas Two-Year-Olds in Training Sale is the auction at which I met Miss Fifty in 2010. Ironically, hip fifty ended up making the cut and had the kindest personality of any horse I met at the sale this year. How crazy!

Under the warm Texas sun that was occasionally overshadowed by clouds, 124 colts, geldings, and fillies galloped before several prospective buyers at Lone Star Park in the under-tack show, most going one furlong, though some did work a quarter of a mile or three-eighths of a mile. Some also merely galloped along the dirt surface. The two-year-old Thoroughbreds were faced with galloping into the wind, which did put a damper on several times, but did not stop some from posting spectacular times.

Here are the ten horses that I was most impressed by off of pedigree and their performance at the under-tack show on April 2, which was the only part of the auction I was able to attend, as well as some honorable mentions:

Hip #19 – Alfajor: Alfajor is by the grade one-winning Bob and John, whose first crop hit the track last year. The dam of hip nineteen is the champion Irish-bred mare, Marina Duff, who has also produced the multiple stakes-winning and multiple group stakes-placed Sopran Mariduff and the stakes-placed Sopran Woomari. This colt is bred on a cross similar to that of the stakes-winning horses Advice (GB) and Shared Dreams (GB). He descends from female family three, the same family that produced the champions Havre de Grace, Lemon Drop Kid, Midnight Lute, and Summer Bird.

Alfajor’s performance on April 2 did not go perfectly, as the announcer stated that he would be working an eighth of a mile, but the son of Bob and John just galloped in front of the grandstand instead. The rider looked down several times for an unapparent reason and the colt galloped on the wrong lead. However, Alfajor still traveled with fluid motions. Yet I would like to see him move with more drive.

Alfajor, a Breeders’ Cup nominated colt eligible for Kentucky Thoroughbred Development Fund (KTDF) registration, is property of American Legacy Farm.

Hip #23 – Sharp Match: Sharp Match is by the graded stakes-winning Sharp Humor, who has sired such horses as the multiple black type-winning Princess Cecilia and the stakes-winning Sharply Offensive. The dam of this filly, Mismatch, is a half-sister to the grade one-wining Personal Business, who produced the graded stakes-winning In Conference. By the millionaire Polish Navy, Mismatch has produced seven winners from ten foals to race. The most notable factor of Sharp Match’s pedigree is that she is a direct descendant of Somethingroyal, the dam of the four stakes winners, one of which was the great Secretariat. Of course, this makes hip twenty-three a descendant of female family two, which also produced the champions Dreaming of Anna, Gio Ponti, Kitten’s Joy, Langfuhr, and Point Given.

Sharp Match was a very powerful mover with tremendous drive, impulsion, and reach. She stretched over the ground readily, covering much ground with her impressive stride as she went an eighth of a mile in 10 3/5 seconds.

Sharp Match, a registered Florida-bred, is consigned by Robert Brewer, agent.

Hip #44 – Monoir Tiara: By the brilliant miler who has quickly become a successful sire in Discreet Cat and out of an Unbridled’s Song mare, Monoir Tiara clearly has attractive bloodlines. This cross makes her very similarly bred to the grade three-winning Out of Bounds and also fairly similarly bred to the classic-winning Shackleford and the multiple graded stakes-winning Etched (Out of Bounds’ half-brother). Hip forty-four is the first foal out of Queenaria, who is a half-sister to Platinum Tiara – a multiple stakes-winning filly, who placed in many graded stakes events, including the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (GI) – and the group stakes-placed Silent Waves. Monoir Tiara also hails from female family two, which not only produced the champions mentioned in hip twenty-three’s information, but also the champions Cigar, Go For Wand, Northern Dancer, Phar Lap, Secretariat, and With Approval.

Monoir Tiara had remarkable delineation of her forearms and gaskins, possessing quality muscling. She was also a very well-balanced filly, having a short, strong topline in correlation to a long underline. This notable conformation allowed her to be a fluid mover with a good length of stride. Monior Tiara maintained a nice frame while breezing a furlong in 11 seconds flat. I would, however, like to see her move with more drive.

Monoir Tiara, a Breeders’ Cup nominated filly registered with the KTDF, is consigned by River Oaks Farm, Inc., agent II. She could certainly go on to be a successful racehorse.

Hip #50: The sire of hip fifty is the graded stakes-winning son of Saint Ballado, Star Dabbler, who has produced the group one-winning Chilean filly Maria Morena and the group three-winning Chilean filly Antipodas. The dam of this colt, Roving Eyes, is by the successful broodmare sire, Rahy, and out of the stakes-winning and multiple graded stakes-placed mare, Flashing Eyes. Of Roving Eyes’ seven foals to race, five have found the winner’s circle, including the black type-winning and graded stakes-placed Golden Damsel and the black type-winning If It’s Meant to B. Roving Eyes has also showed that she is a producer of producers, being the granddam of the stakes-winning Luke of York and the multiple stakes-placed Instant Style. Hip fifty’s second dam, Flashing Eyes, also produced the graded stakes-winning sire Morluc. This colt is a female family one descendant, the most populated family that has produced a large number of champions, including Azeri, Buckpasser, Forty Niner, Mineshaft, Rachel Alexandra, and Smarty Jones.

Similar to two years prior, I fell in love with hip fifty. He, unlike many juvenile Thoroughbred colts, did not attempt to bite, let alone nibble. In fact, he just nuzzled and thoroughly enjoyed getting his face rubbed. In addition to his very likeable personality, hip fifty was an evenly balanced individual with a strong hip and topline. While working an eighth of a mile in 11 1/5 seconds without much asking from the rider, hip fifty displayed his smooth, fluid stride. He was a powerful mover with great drive and impulsion while maintaining effortless leg motion.

Hip fifty, an accredited Louisiana-bred nominated to the Texas Thoroughbred Association (TTA) Sales Futurity, is consigned by Twin Oaks Training Center, agent. He could certainly become a talented performer.

Hip #59: This filly is part of the first crop of Private Vow, a son of the successful sire Broken Vow. Private Vow – a multiple graded stakes winner – has the potential to be a productive sire, being by a son of Unbridled and out of a Deputy Minister mare. Both of these stallions have been very effective in being sires of sires and now grandsires of sires. The dam of this filly is the Argentinean mare Shy Eda, who is a full sister to the stakes-winning Edil Tom and a half-sister to the group one-winning Cruzan Gold and the group stakes-placed Forty Editado. Shy Eda, out of a productive mare, has become a rewarding broodmare herself. Of her six foals to make it to the track, five have won. These winners include the multiple group stakes-winning and group one-placed Duvets, the group stakes-winning Shy Legionario, and the group stakes-placed Saint George. Hip fifty-nine derives from female family number sixteen, which is most notable for producing the champions Chateaugay, Ginger Punch, Little Current, Holy Bull, and Orientate, as well as the popular grade one winners Barbaro and Hard Spun.

In her 11-second work for an eighth of a mile, hip fifty-nine performed with a long, commanding stride. She galloped with powerful drive and impulsion, covering much ground with ease.

Hip fifty-nine, an accredited Louisiana-bred engaged with the Louisiana Futurity and eligible for the Bayou State Bonus and the Elge Rasberry Memorial Stakes, is also consigned by Twin Oaks Training Center, agent.

Hip #77 – Curlinator: Curlin took the racing world by storm in 2007 and 2008, taking home Horse of the Year titles both years. His first crop will hit the track this year and one of the colts in that first crop is Curlinator, a colt by the black type-winning Dixieland Band mare Tap Your Feet, who has also produced the multiple grade one-winning Diamondrella and the stakes-winning and multiple grade one-placed Bonnie Blue Flag. As if hip seventy-seven’s immediate family was not impressive enough, the colt is a direct descendant of Frizette, one of the most important foundation mares of the 1900s. The Reine De Course mare is one of many in Curlinator’s pedigree, who brought $17,000 at the Keeneland September Yearling Sale. The chestnut colt is very similarly bred to the multiple graded stakes-winning Strike a Deal and hails from female family number thirteen, which is the same family that yielded the great horses Mr. Prospector and Seattle Slew, as well as the grade one winners Quality Road and Union Rags.

Curlinator, unlike many horses who were ridden before the crowd gathered at the under-tack show on April 2, went for a gallop. The robust chestnut colt with flashy white markings was a fluid mover with soft, smooth strides and remarkable drive and impulsion. I like that this beautifully-bred and powerfully-built colt was not pushed like so many others were.

Curlinator, a Breeders’ Cup nominated colt registered with the KTDF, is property of Ralph Arnold. He is my top selection in the sale and I believe he has the greatest potential of all of these horses to go on to be a very profitable racehorse.

Hip #79: Though not well-known on a national level, this filly’s sire, Count the Time, has sired several talented horses in the South, including the graded stakes-winning Fiesty Countess. Her dam, Tensie’s Pro, was a state-bred stakes winner in New York and a full sister to black type-placed filly and a half-sister to yet another black type-placed filly. Of her seven foals to race, Tensie’s Pro has produced five winners, including the grade one-winning E Z’s Gentleman. Included in the four Reine De Course mares in hip seventy-nine’s dam line is the filly’s fourth dam, Ole Liz, who won three prestigious juvenile races and set a track record for five furlongs at Churchill Downs in 1965. This dam line descends from the rich female family four, which has produced many champions, including Assault, Gallant Fox, Man O’ War, Proud Spell, Real Quiet, and Zenyatta.

Hip seventy-nine was a very well-balanced individual, possessing a sloping shoulder that allowed her to be evenly divided into thirds. Her long, thin neck tied in well to her angled shoulder. These conformation advantages allowed her to move with a very long stride in her 10 4/5-second one-furlong move. She was an effortless, impressive mover who maintained a nice frame despite running greenly.

Hip seventy-nine, an accredited Louisiana-bred nominated to the TTA Sales Futurity, is consigned by Robert Brewer, agent. I believe this filly could go on to be a very prosperous horse.

Hip #95: Medaglia d’Oro has emerged as one of the best sires in the nation, having already sired an all-time great in Rachel Alexandra. Not only is he the sire of the 2009 Horse of the Year, but he has also produced six other grade one winners. Hip ninety-five is by Medaglia d’Oro and out of the winning Seattle Slew mare Ashley’s Clan, who is a half-sister to the multiple grade one-winning Pure Clan, the multiple graded stakes-winning Greater Good, the multiple stakes-placed Gather the Day, and the dam of the grade one-winning Sky Diva and the multiple black type-winning and graded stakes-placed Quick Little Miss. Ashley’s Clan has produced two runners, both of which are half-siblings to this colt. Hip ninety-five is bred similarly to the grade one-winning Plum Pretty, as well as the multiple graded stakes-winning Al Khali. This colt hails from a fairly nondescript female family in female family seventeen, though that family has produced the champions Gallorette and Saint Liam, as well as the Triple Crown-winning Omaha.

Hip ninety-five was a very sleek individual with a striking appearance. He moved with smooth strides while traveling with a good frame, driving himself forward from the hindquarters while working an eighth of a mile in 11 seconds flat.

Hip ninety-five, a Breeders’ Cup nominated colt registered with the KTDF, is consigned by Robert Brewer, agent.

Hip #97: By the prominent sire Awesome Again and out of a Fusaichi Pegasus mare named Auntie Boo, this colt is clearly nicely bred. Auntie Boo’s offspring have not yet made it to the track, but her dam yielded twelve winners, including the multiple stakes-winning and graded stakes-placed The Exeter Man, the Brazilian stakes-winning Icy Wind, the stakes-placed and track record-setting Chihulykee, and the Brazilian stakes-placed Furious Wind. By Awesome Again and out of a mare sired by a son of the influential Mr. Prospector, hip ninety seven is similarly bred to the hard-knocking grade one winner Awesome Gem and the graded stakes-winning horses Awesome Act and Tessa Blue. This colt is a descendant of female family twenty-one, the same family responsible for the grade one winners Alexandrova, Broad Brush, Exceller, and Gulch.

Hip ninety-seven gave me the impression of a Quarter Horse, as he was very wide through the chest and from stifle to stifle. This chestnut colt traveled with powerful strides, eating up at the ground. He was still fairly green and his rider did not ask him for much, which resulted in a 12 4/5-second work. However, he was still an impressive mover with his fluid stride and noteworthy impulsion.

Hip ninety-seven, a Breeders’ Cup nominated colt registered with the KTDF, is consigned by Double R Consignment, agent I.

Hip #126 – Graustarkian: Mizzen Mast, sired by an important sire in Cozzene, has produced several successful racehorses, including the grade one-winning horses Mast Track, Midships, and Ultimate Eagle. He is the sire of Graustarkian, who is out of the winning Seeking the Gold mare Gilty Look, whose five runners have all found the winner’s circle, three of which have earned over $100,000. The dam of Gilty Look is none other than the half-sister to the grade one-winning sire Private Terms and the grade three-winning sire Blue Ensign, Laughing Look. The daughter of Damascus never raced, but she produced the multiple grade one-winning Coronado’s Quest, the grade three-winning and course record-setting Warning Glance, the black type-winning Military Look, the stakes-placed Look to the King, and the dam of the multiple graded stakes-winning Air Support. By a son of Cozzene and out of a Seeking the Gold mare, Graustarkian is bred similarly to the grade three-winning Cozzy Corner, the stakes-winning and group stakes-placed Robe Decollete, and the stakes-placed Mayomast. The most remarkable characteristic of Graustarkian’s pedigree is that her fourth dam is Shenanigans, the dam of the great champion Ruffian, the multiple graded stakes-winning and track record-setting Icecapade, and the graded stakes-winning and track record-equaling Buckfinder. In fact, Shenanigans’ position in Graustarkian’s dam line begins a series of six consecutive Reine De Course mares. This is female family eight, which has also yielded the champions Bold Ruler, Conquistador Cielo, Rags to Riches, Raise a Native, and Whirlaway.

Graustarkian moved with a bit too much knee action, though she was an imposing mover. She traveled with fairly remarkable drive and impulsion and was very professional while working an eighth of a mile in 10 4/5 seconds.

Graustarkian, a Breeders’ Cup nominated accredited Louisiana-bred, is consigned by Robert Brewer, agent.

Honorable Mentions:

Hip #21 – My Native Blues: Though out of a half-sister to a graded stakes winner, My Native Blues’ pedigree is good but not absolutely outstanding. However, he was quite noteworthy in his 11-second furlong work.

Hip #27: A half-sister to a stakes winner and track record-setter, this filly performed well in her 10 3/5-second furlong work.

Hip #35 – Moncoumba: This filly, who comes from a prosperous dam line, turned in one of the fastest works of the day, going an eighth of a mile in 10 1/5 seconds while traveling beautifully.

Hip #53: From the family of the Kentucky Oaks (GI)-winning and graded stakes-producing Secret Status, this filly turned in a noteworthy 11-second work for one eighth of a mile.

Hip #89: This colt was impressive in his 10 4/5-second furlong work and also comes from a nice dam line.

Hip #96: A half-sister to a graded stakes winner and a black-type winner, this filly turned in a powerful furlong work in 10 4/5 seconds.

Hip #102 – Blazing Graduate: A colt that I planned on featuring, this colt with an exciting pedigree and remarkable dam side did not impress me in the flesh. He did not have much substance to his build and was not an attractive mover. He did not have the look of a brilliant athlete. Nonetheless, he is impressively bred, being the half-brother to a graded stakes-winning and grade one-placed gelding.

Hip #137: Out of a half-sister to the grade one-winning Tactical Cat, this chestnut colt worked a strong eighth of a mile in in 10 2/5 seconds.

I will do a follow-up piece after the sale, spotlighting these horses again with the results of the auction.

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  1. Thanks for sharing your assessment of these two year olds. It will be interesting to see how they perform in the sales ring. I'll look forward to your next blog on that!

  2. Excellent job. I know of multiple buys that used your notes in their decision making process.