With their majestic stature, large stud fees, often impressive racing records, fans’ occasional ability to visit them, and their immense amount of offspring, stallions generally garner the most attention of Thoroughbred breeding stock. The highest quality, most productive sires typically produce well over one hundred foals annually and therefore, they are much more well-known than Thoroughbred broodmares.
However, the mares are extremely significant as well. More often than not, top racehorses have impressive dam lines. Yet, it is not as common for a mare to produce more than one successful horse as it is for a stallion. For this reason, any broodmare that is capable of producing more than one productive racehorse is held in high regards.
Photo by Terri Cage
Racing fans frequently enjoy watching siblings of their favorite racehorses contest before the grandstand, powering down the stretch like their famous sibling had done. However, it is frequent that these siblings to superstars are often much less talented than their more accomplished brother or sister. The offspring of La Ville Rouge, the dam of Barbaro, come to mind. Though she is a very successful broodmare, she has never produced another foal anywhere near as brilliant as Barbaro. Recent broodmares who have had solely one superstar include Sherriff’s Deputy (the dam of Curlin), Here I Go (the dam of Summerly), and Belle’s Good Cide (the dam of Funny Cide).
It is broodmares that produce more than one outstanding foal that are held in the highest regard. Those that produce several graded stakes winners often become known as “blue hens,” a term used for mares that produce several successful racehorses. Often, these mares become influential in the dam lines of Thoroughbreds and if they remain very effective, they could become a Reine De Course (Queen of the Turf) mare, which is a broodmare who becomes very famous, influential, and important in the pedigrees of Thoroughbreds. Such mares include the greats La Troienne, Alcibiades, and Somethingroyal. We have seen many magnificent broodmares as of late and I have chosen twelve of them to feature, adding to the nine I featured in my first “Recent Remarkable Broodmares” article, here.
Arlucea: After winning her debut, Arlucea never stood in the winner’s circle again, failing to finish better than fifth in her remaining six starts. Her first foal to find stakes success was Izarra, a daughter of Distorted Humor that placed in a pair of grade ones in Southern California as a two-year-old. Her next foal was Moonport, a gelding who finished second in a stakes race at Ellis Park at age five. Arlucea’s most accomplished foal is clearly Fort Larned, a multiple grade one winner who captured the 2012 Breeders’ Cup Classic (GI). Arlucea’s success has not stopped there: on the same card on which Fort Larned won the Stephen Foster Handicap (GI), Arlucea’s 2010 foal, Lent, broke his maiden impressively in his second career start.
Arlucea is a daughter of the influential sire Broad Brush, thus giving her foals the same maternal grandsire as the grade one winners Dreaming of Anna and Richard’s Kid. But the most fascinating facet of Arlucea’s pedigree is her dam, the great Bayakoa. A multiple Eclipse champion and Hall of Famer, the Argentine-bred Bayakoa won a plethora of grade ones throughout her storied career. Interestingly, Arlucea shares her name with her granddam, whereas her third dam is named Izarra – just like Arlucea’s first foal of note.
Photo by Terri Cage
Born Gold: Based in France, Born Gold only won once in her brief career. A homebred for Wertheimer & Frere, Born Gold’s first foal was Glamadour, a mare that was capable of winning but never amounted to much. Her second foal, Gold Round, was Born Gold’s first black-type runner, winning the Prix Cleopatre (GIII). This was only the beginning of a very successful broodmare career for Born Gold, whose next foal was the group stakes-placed Born Something. Her next stakes runner was her sixth foal, Red Tune, yet another group stakes-placed competitor. In 2005, Gold Sound became Born Gold’s second group stakes win, capturing the Prix de Guiche (GIII) over Doctor Dino, who would go on to win numerous group ones. But it was Born Gold’s next group stakes-level runner that made people truly begin to take notice. That foal of Born Gold was none other than Goldikova, a mare that would become the first horse to capture three Breeders’ Cup races – taking three consecutive Breeders’ Cup Miles (GI) against the males. Goldikova earned championship titles in North America and Europe, taking home two Eclipse Awards and three Cartier Awards, including a Horse of the Year title. Other notable horses Born Gold has produced since Goldikova include the group one-winning Galikova and the group stakes-winning Anodin.
Born Gold’s bloodlines make it no surprise that she has become such a spectacular producer. Her sire, Blushing Groom, is one of the finest broodmare sires of the breed, having sired the dams of the likes of the grade/group one winners Awesome Aagain, Flute, Haafhd, Macho Uno, and Mezzo Soprano. Her own dam sire is the influential Lyphard, who, like Blushing Groom, found much success as a broodmare sire, appearing as the dam sire in the pedigrees of several grade/group one winners, including Hatoof, Passinetti, and Skimming. He is also the broodmare sire of Delta Princess, the multiple graded stakes-winning dam of Royal Delta. Born Gold also descends from a strong dam line, being a daughter of the group one-winning Riviere d’Or, who also foaled the multiple grade one-winning Gold Splash, also a successful broodmare. This makes Born Gold a direct descendant of the Reine De Course mares Gold River (Born Gold’s granddam and a champion racehorse), Glaneuse (Born Gold’s third dam and a group one winner), Black Ray, Lady Brilliant, and Our Lassie. Interestingly, Blushing Groom is also a direct descendant of Black Ray.
Photo by Terri Cage
Don’t Trick Her: An unraced homebred for Brereton C. Jones, Don’t Trick Her’s first stakes performer was On the Menu, who placed in three black-type races before capturing the Just Smashing Stakes at Monmouth Park. Her next foal, Check the Label, granted her even greater success, winning four graded stakes events, including the Garden City Stakes (GI). She continued her pattern of producing grade one winners, as her subsequent foal – Include Me Out – has become her best offspring yet, having won four graded stakes races as well, two of which have been grade ones.
Although an American-bred, Don’t Trick Her has a rather international pedigree, tracing back to numerous horses bred in Canada, France, Great Britain, and Mexico. Her sire is Mazel Trick, who has quickly proven to be an effective broodmare sire, having served as the maternal grandsire of the likes of several grade one winners, including Summer Soiree. Don’t Trick Her’s own dam, Lucy Sims, was also a quality producer, foaling the multiple stakes-winning and graded stakes-placed Tiffany Diamond and the black-type-placed Kittery Point. Don’t Trick Her’s fifth dam is the Reine De Course mare Moonstone, thus commencing a pattern of four consecutive Reine De Course mares in Don’t Trick Her’s tail female line.
|Include Me Out|
Photo by Terri Cage
Hookedonthefeelin: Trained by Bob Baffert, Hookedonthefeelin had a spectacular racing career, winning seven of her eighteen starts – including the La Brea Stakes (GI) – to earn $488,554. She immediately found success as a broodmare as well, as her first foal was Pussycat Doll, winner of three grade ones, including the La Brea. Pussycat Doll was not her only grade one winner, however, as Hookedonthefeelin is also the dam of the grade one-winning Jimmy Creed. Other successful horses Hookedonthefeelin produced include Funny Feeling, a black-type winner, and Blowing Kisses, a mare that placed in numerous black-type races.
By a grade one-placed son of Dixieland Band in Citidancer, Hookedonthefeelin provides her offspring with the same broodmare sire as the grade one-winning Midnight Lucky, as well as the graded stakes winner Suave and the stakes winners Norman Asbjornson and Worldly. Surprisingly, Hookedonthefeelin’s tail female line is rather weak, although she is a direct descendant of the dam of Maryland champion On Your Toes.
Leslie’s Lady: Profitable on the racetrack, Leslie’s Lady was a black-type winner as a juvenile and after winning just once more after her two-year-old season, she was retired to life as a broodmare. Her first foal of note was Into Mischief, who never finished worse than second in any of his six starts – five of which were in stakes company. Winner of the CashCall Futurity (GI), Into Mischief has blossomed into an effective sire, having produced the grade one-winning Goldencents and the graded stakes-winning Vyjack from his first crop. Since then, Leslie’s Lady has also produced Beholder – the Eclipse Champion Two-Year-Old Filly of 2012 who captured the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (GI) and finished second in this year’s Kentucky Oaks (GI).
A daughter of Tricky Creek, Leslie’s Lady’s grandsire, Clever Trick, was a fantastic broodmare sire, siring the dams of the likes of the grade one winners Came Home, Camp Victory, Noble’s Promise, Nothing to Lose, and Victor’s Cry. Leslie’s Lady stems from a prolific tail female line, as her fourth dam is the multiple stakes-winning Patelin, a charm to have in a horse’s female family. The black mare was a daughter of the Reine De Course mare Pontivy and thus a direct descendant of the additional Reine De Course mares Golden Apple, Lou Lanier, and Thorn Apple, as well as the influential British-bred mare Gallopade. Kentucky Derby victor I’ll Have Another, too, is a direct descendant of Pontivy through Patelin, as he and Leslie’s Lady share the same dam line beginning with Last Bird. Triple Crown winner Affirmed and Derby winner Mine That Bird also descend from the Gallopade line.
Photo by Terri Cage
Marozia: Marozia made each of her starts in England, winning only once in her nine-race career. Sent to Kentucky, Marozia’s third foal, Andromeda’s Hero, was the first to greatly raise her value. A graded stakes winner, Andromeda’s Hero placed in numerous graded stakes races – most notably finishing second in the Belmont Stakes (GI). The year after Marozia foaled Andromeda’s Hero, she produced the stakes-winning Superfly – who finished third in Champagne Stakes (GI) at Belmont Park four months after the colt’s full brother had played the role of runner-up in the Test of the Champion. Marozia’s most lucrative foal to date is Stay Thirsty, who was not only yet another Belmont Stakes runner-up, but a multiple grade one winner that captured the Travers Stakes (GI) and Cigar Mile Handicap (GI).
Sharing her sire, Storm Bird, with the great stallion Storm Cat, Marozia’s sire is the dam sire of the likes of the grade one winners Birdstone, Dear Birdie, Commentator, Court Vision, Medicean, and Sand Springs. Marozia’s own broodmare sire, Roberto, is one of the most influential maternal grandsires in recent years, having sired the dams of many grade one winners, including Amerique, Punctilious, and Tweedside. Her dam, Make Change, was a stakes winner that placed in several grade ones, earning $506,338. Interestingly, Marozia’s fourth dam – Equal Venture – is a full sister to Triple Crown winner Assault and produced Prove Out, a multiple grade one winner who conquered the great Secretariat in the Woodward Stakes (GI).
Photo by Terri Cage
Matlacha Pass: Winner of her first two starts by a combined 10 lengths, Matlacha Pass was a game second in her third and final start. Unfortunately, the promising racehorse was retired due to injury and thus began her broodmare career at Claiborne Farm. Matlacha Pass found success as a producer right off the bat, as her first foal, Chili Cat, was an impressive maiden winner at Saratoga prior to becoming a stakes-placed runner. But it was with her second foal – Pine Island – that Matlacha Pass truly began to prove herself as a top-notch broodmare. A dual grade one winner, Pine Island’s life met a tragic end when she broke down in the 2006 Breeders’ Cup Distaff (GI). But Matlacha Pass has continued Pine Island’s legacy through her effectiveness as a broodmare, having since produced the spectacular Point of Entry – a multiple grade one winner and one of the best turf horses the United States has seen in recent years.
Out of an unraced Pleasant Colony mare, Matlacha Pass is a full sister to Breeders’ Cup Distaff (GI) winner Pleasant Home and the multiple graded stakes-winning Country Hideaway. Her granddam, the multiple grade one-winning Maplejinksy, produced the multiple grade one-winning Hall of Famer Sky Beauty. An influential broodmare herself, Maplejinsky is the granddam of not only Pine Island, Pleasant Home, and Point of Entry, but the additional grade one winner Tale of Ekati. Matlacha Pass’ tail female line is abounding with Reine De Course mares, including her fourth dam, Stick to Beauty, who produced the champion Gold Beauty, the graded stakes-winning The Prime Minister, and the stakes winners Majestic Venture, Miraloma, and Storm Beauty. Gold Beauty is in fact Matlacha Pass’ third dam and was also a top producer, foaling not only Maplejinsky, but also the multiple group one-winning champion Dayjur. Matlacha Pass is a daughter of Seeking the Gold, therefore allowing her progeny to share their dam sire with plentiful grade one winners, such as Blame, Dancing Forever, Excellent Art, Riskaverse, and She Be Wild.
|Point of Entry|
Photo by Terri Cage
Serena’s Song: As a racehorse, Serena’s Song is among the most accomplished on this list. Winner of an astounding eleven grade ones, Serena’s Song won against males in two of seven starts against them – including a 3 ½-length victory in the Jim Beam Stakes (GII) and a triumph in the Haskell Invitational Handicap (GI). She was even the favorite in the 1995 Kentucky Derby (GI), although she finished sixteenth of nineteen. Although she lost to males five times, she only finished out of the money on two of those occasions. Honored as the Champion Three-Year-Old Filly of 1995, Serena’s Song was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2002.
Serena’s Song immediately found success as a broodmare, as her first foal, Serena’s Tune, won a pair of stakes races. This was only the beginning of years full of success for Serena’s Song. Her next foal, a $3.4 million dollar yearling named Sophisticat, made all but one start in Europe, with her biggest win occurring in the Coronation Stakes (GI) at Royal Ascot. Serena’s Song remained on a roll, as her third foal, Arbitrate, earned $195,390, missing a stakes victory by a mere nose. The champion’s highest-earning foal to date is her fourth foal, Grand Reward – a full brother to Sophisticat, born in 2001. A horse who began his career in Europe, Grand Reward placed in many group stakes races there prior to making the move to the United States, where he won the Oaklawn Handicap (GII). Serena’s Song’s 2002 foal did not disappoint, either. Sold for $2.8 million as a yearling, the colt – named Harlington – won six of his ten races, including the Gulfstream Park Handicap (GII). Her next three foals ended Serena’s Song’s impressive chain of stakes horses, as none of them amounted to much. Serena’s Song was fourteen when she foaled her next stakes horse, Schramsberg. A son of Storm Cat – with whom she had found little success with her two previous foals sired by the great stallion – Schramsberg was a graded stakes winner that additionally captured a pair of listed stakes.
Serena’s Song is a daughter of Rahy, the broodmare sire of more than 100 stakes winners, including the grade/group one victors After Market, Courageous Cat, Declaration of War, Furthest Land, Life At Ten, Megahertz, and Rahy’s Attorney. Her dam was a fruitful broodmare herself, producing not only Serena’s Song, but also the graded stakes winner Vivid Imagination. Serena’s Song is a direct descendant of the Irish mare Snoot, who produced the classic winners Caligula and Snow Maiden.
Sichilla: Sichilla made only three starts, two of which resulted in victory, including a win in the Prix Amandine, a listed race in France. Sent to the prominent sire Pivotal, Sichilla’s first foal was a stunning bay colt named Siyouni, who would go on to be a group one winner. Sichilla’s next foal, Siyouma, became a group one winner as well, capturing a race of that class in both Great Britain and Canada. Sichilla’s third foal was not named, but her fourth foal, Siyenica, is currently racing. However, that daughter of Azamour has failed to follow in her siblings’ footsteps thus far, running poorly in a pair of group ones since winning her debut.
Sichilla is a daughter of the great stallion Danehill, a leading sire in multiple nations and sire of more than 340 stakes winners. Danehill has proven to be a tremendous broodmare sire as well, as he is the maternal grandsire of not only Sichilla’s pair of group one winners, but the great champion Frankel, as well as the additional group one winners Art Connoisseur, Cima de Triomphe, Danedream, Shocking, and Vengeance of Rain. In fact, Danehill is the maternal grandsire of the winners of no less than 48 group one races. Not only does Sichilla receive much power from the top side of her pedigree, but she hails from a strong dam line as well. Her stakes-placed dam, Slipstream Queen, also produced the multiple group one-winning Slickly, the multiple graded stakes-winning No Slip, the stakes-winning runners Fly Love and Streamix, the group stakes-placed Ripple, and the stakes-placed Sliploge. Sichilla’s granddam is Country Queen, a grade one-winning daughter of leading broodmare sire Explodent.
Toussaud: Spectacular as a racehorse, Toussaud won four graded/group stakes events, including the Gamely Handicap (GI). Retiring after a career in which she earned $552,751, Toussaud quickly found success as a broodmare as well; her first foal, Chester House, was a grade one winner that was less than $56,000 short of earning $2 million. Like Serena’s Song, Toussaud’s broodmare career commenced with a winning streak: her second foal, Honest Lady, was also a grade one winner and ran second against males in the Breeders’ Cup Sprint (GI) and her third foal, Decarchy, was a multiple graded stakes-winner that placed in the Eddie Read Handicap (GI). Although this impressive pattern of stakes progeny came to an end with Toussaud’s fourth foal, her fifth foal – Chiselling – revitalized Toussaud’s success, winning a grade one. The mare’s sixth foal, Empire Maker, was certainly her best, winning three grade ones – including the Belmont Stakes (GI) – before becoming a terrific sire.
A daughter of European champion El Gran Senor, Toussaud provides her progeny with the same dam sire as the grade/group one winners Ramonti and Square Eddie. Her dam, Image of Reality, was a graded stakes-winning racehorse before producing not only Toussaud, but also the graded stakes-winning Navarra, the stakes-winning Image of Class, and the stakes-placed Projection. From her granddam to her sixth dam are five consecutive Reine De Course mares along Toussaud’s dam line. Notably, among those mares is Bravura, who is the fifth dam of not only Toussaud’s son Empire Maker, but also Funny Cide – the horse that defeated Empire Maker in the Kentucky Derby (GI) before Empire Maker spoiled Funny Cide’s Triple Crown bid in the Belmont Stakes (GI). Bravura is one of the most notable mares in Toussaud’s dam line, being the dam of the grade one-winning Hail the Pirates and the multiple stakes-winning Candalita – whose stakes wins came in races that are now grade ones. The final Reine De Course mare in Toussaud’s tail female family, Teresina, was an outstanding racehorse – defeating males in several prestigious races. Of course, she was also a tremendous broodmare, producing five black-type winners – including the Irish Oaks (GI) victress Theresina – and a black-type-placed runner.
Urban Sea: A highweight older mare in France, Urban Sea was a group one winner as a racehorse, capturing one of the world’s most prestigious races: the Prix de L’Arc de Triomphe (GI). She began her broodmare career in style, as her first foal was the group stakes-winning champion Urban Ocean. Urban Sea’s prosperity continued with her next three foals: the stakes-winning Melikah, the multiple group one-winning champion and outstanding sire Galileo, and the multiple group one-winning Black Sam Bellamy. Her fourth foal, Atticus, was not only unraced, but also completely infertile. However, Urban Sea’s offspring returned to the races fashionably, as her fifth foal – All Too Beautiful – was a group stakes winner, her sixth foal – My Typhoon – was a grade one-winning millionaire, and her seventh foal – Cherry Hinton – was a group stakes-placed runner. Despite her already incredible record as a producer, Urban Sea’s ninth foal, Sea the Stars, achieved the greatest success of any of her progeny on the racetrack. Winner of six group ones, Sea the Stars earned numerous championship titles – including 2009 Cartier Horse of the Year – and is considered by many an all-time great. Urban Sea’s final foal before her death was Born to Sea, a stakes winner and group one-placed runner.
Urban Sea is sired by Miswaki, a recurrently terrific broodmare sire who has produced the dams of the grade/group one winners Dalakhani, Daylami, Landseer, and The Factor. Like herself, Urban Sea’s dam, Allegretta, is a Reine De Course mare, having also foaled the group one-winning King’s Best, the group stakes-winning Allez Les Trois, and the stakes-placed Turbaine. Her siblings, too, have proven to be top producers, as her sisters have produced two group one winners and her classic-winning brother, King’s Best, has sired numerous top-class racehorses, including the group one winners Dubai Surprise, Eishin Flash, Proclamation, Royal Diamond, Sajjhaa, and Workforce. Urban Sea hails from a strong female line, tracing back to the likes of the German Derby winner Asterblüte – a daughter of the Reine De Course mare and tremendous racehorse Aster. This makes Urban Sea a direct descendant of four additional Reine De Course mares.
Zoftig: Prosperous as both a racehorse and broodmare, Zoftig won more than $400,000 on the track, capturing the Selene Stakes (GI). Her first foal to race was Zofzig, who only raced twice, but won both of those starts. She then produced Zaftig, who won the Acorn Stakes (GI) by 4 ½ lengths over champion Indian Blessing. Her other grade one-winning offspring is Zo Impressive, winner of the Mother Goose Stakes (GI).
A daughter of champion racehorse and sire Cozzene, Zoftig provides her offspring with the same maternal grandsire as the grade/group one winners Distant Way and River’s Prayer. Zoftig’s tail female family is lined with some of the breed’s finest broodmare sires, such as Private Account, Nijinsky, Herbager, and Double Jay. This is reflected in the abundance of elite broodmares in her tail female line, which includes Chain (the dam of the grade one-winning Chain Bracelet) and the Reine De Course mares Continue, Courtesy, Book Law, Popinjay, Chelandry, and Illuminata. Other direct descendants of Chelandry – the foundation mare of family 1-n – include the dams of Americain– who won the Melbourne Cup (GI) at 3,200 meters (nearly 16 furlongs), Bodemeister – runner-up in the 2012 Kentucky Derby (GI), and Swale – the ill-fated 1984 Derby and Belmont champion.
Other mares considered for this article include: Chipeta Springs, Hollywood Wildcat, Kind, Memories of Silver, Pretty Discreet, Take Charge Lady, Tantina, and Versailles Treaty. Perhaps they will be featured in a later article!