Curlin babies and Curlin covers at Keeneland January

The Keeneland January Horses of All Ages sale happens this week.  As of Saturday, January 9, there are nine horses sired by Curlin who remain in the sale, as well as one broodmare covered by Curlin.

Here, we preview each of the horses connected to Curlin who are still slated to go through the ring at Keeneland January.

Curlin Babies in Keeneland January

  • Hip 32: Danette (Sugar Britches, by Dixieland Band)
    • Four-year-old Danette may not have broken her maiden until the Belmont meet last summer, but she danced a lot of big dances at age two and three.  She placed third behind Angela Renee in the 2014 Chandelier Stakes (GI), and finished a strong fifth in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (GI) that year.  Since her maiden win in July, she started twice more at Saratoga.  she finished fourth in a pair of Grade I affairs, the Coaching Club American Oaks and the Alabama.  Danette has been offered at Keeneland January as a racing or broodmare prospect.  Her only half-sibling to race so far was a full brother named Curl My Toes.  He finished second on debut in the six-furlong Baxter Stakes at Fonner Park, beaten just a neck.  Unfortunately, he died later in 2014, and never raced again.  Going further up in Danette’s pedigree, second dam Unchecked produced Check Your Soul (Perfect Soul), winner of both the Wando and the Plate Trial at Woodbine in 2011.  That is a bit more class for the family — and stamina, as well, with both of those coming at two turns.
  •  Hip 109: La Grange (Jennie R., by Awesome Again)
    • Four-year-old La Grange was the first stakes winner of Curlin’s third crop.  She broke her maiden second time out — in the Cinderella Stakes at Los Alamitos in 2014.  She raced one more time, taking second in the Sorrento (GII) at Del Mar.  She has been on the California vet’s list ever since, and never raced again.  La Grange sells in foal to Afleet Alex.  For those who follow Chicago-area racing, La Grange’s dam may ring a bell.  Jennie R. won three local stakes races in 2007: the Possibly Perfect S. at Arlington, and both the Indian Maid H. and the Summertime Promise H. at Hawthorne.  She was second in the Modesty (GIII) that year as well, beaten a length and a half by Bridge Game.  Those races came at two turns on the turf in Jennie R.’s six-year-old year.  Jennie R. has produced one other runner, also a winner, and also a solid older horse: Magic d’Oro (Medaglia d’Oro).  This six-year-old horse, a ten-time winner, won three two-turn dirt stakes races at Assiniboia Downs last year.  He remains in training, and is on the worktab at Turf Paradise.  Between that and Curlin’s tendency to throw babies who do well with time to mature, it is unfortunate that La Grange did not race past age two.
  • Hip 198: unnamed yearling colt out of Polly Alexander, by Foxhound
    • This yearling is a full brother to a yet-unnamed two-year-old colt who sold for $110,000 at Keeneland September last year.  Polly Alexander was herself a precocious type.  All nine of her career starts came at two, and she won three of them.  She never quite made it in stakes company, however.  Her offspring, thus far, have followed that suit — showing some solid form against more modest company, but none yet breaking through in stakes.  She has produced some quite honest ones, perhaps none moreso than Gemma Dell’olmo (Stephen Got Even).  A $6,500 yearling purchase at Keeneland September 2008, she has started 167 times in Italy, winning 14 times and hitting the board another 52.  She also produced a nine-time American winner in A. P. Corsair (A. P. Warrior).
  • Hip 446: High Jango (Gata Bella, by Storm Cat)
    • High Jango, an unraced five-year-old filly, goes into the ring in foal to first-crop sire Fed Biz.  Should High Jango produce a live foal this year, it will be her first.  She was mated to Dunkirk for 2015, but produced a dead foal last year.  High Jango’s dam Gata Bella has so far produced five runners, with four winners among them.  The most accomplished of them has been Ha Ha Tonka (Distorted Humor), a stakes-winning sprinter at Prairie Meadows.  Directly up High Jango’s female line is some more sprinting; her second dam is Capote Belle, winner of the Prioress (GII) and the Test (GI) in 1996, and third behind Smoke Glacken when facing males in the 1997 DeFrancis Dash (GII).
  • Hip 503: Melody Lin (Melody Que, by Sadlers Wells)
    • Six-year-old Melody Lin has been entered as a broodmare prospect only.  She is not currently in foal.  Melody Lin raced 24 times, with four wins and another nine in-the-money finishes.  Her last start was on October 7 at Hawthorne; though she did not finish, she walked off the course under her own power after her saddle slipped.  All four of her wins came at two turns on the grass, quite fitting for a daughter of Curlin out of a Sadler’s Wells mare.  Despite her unfortunate final race, she spent most of her five-year-old season in good form.  Though she was laid off from February 2014 through February of 2015, she hit the board in five of seven starts at age five, including an allowance win at Sam Houston.  Melody Lin is the only winner among three starters out of her dam.  Jennifer Melody (Rock Hard Ten) has hit the board in Brazil; Kelsa (Empire Maker) was unplaced in three starts in California.
  • Hip 689: Atomicseventynine (Western Hemisphere, by General Meeting)
    • Four-year-old Atomicseventynine sells as a broodmare prospect only.  She raced six times, winning once, in a $50,000 maiden claiming race at a mile over the Santa Anita dirt last March.  She struggled in two starts against winners, and last raced in August.  Three other progeny of her dam Western Hemisphere have raced, though Atomicseventynine remains that mare’s only winner.  Still, the immediate female family has no shortage of class.  Western Hemisphere herself was a versatile sort: a winner of two stakes at extended-sprint distances on dirt, but graded stakes placed going two turns on the grass. Second dam Excellent Lady, herself a four-time winner, produced a pair of multiple graded stakes winners.  Dirt router General Challenge (General Meeting) was a force in California at ages three and four, winning races including the 1999 Santa Anita Derby (GI) and the 2000 Santa Anita Handicap (GI).  Notable Career (Avenue of Flags) won a pair of graded stakes as a juvenile in 2000, the six-furlong Landaluce (GIII) and the one-mile Oak Leaf (GI).
  • Hip 700: Belisama (Bavarian Belle, by More than Ready)
    • Five-year-old Belisama goes to Keeneland January as a broodmare prospect only.  She started five times at four different tracks; the closest she came to victory was at Keeneland in her last start, when she finished second beaten 3/4 length in a $15,000 maiden claimer at six furlongs on dirt.  Out of three foals out of Bavarian Belle to race so far, Belisama is the only one who has not won.  Batten Down Belle (Midshipman) and Bootleggin (Street Boss) both graduated at first asking, at age two, going dash distances.  Batten Down Belle did so on Tapeta; Bootleggin won on grass.  Dam Bavarian Belle, on the other hand, did her better work going two turns on the grass.  Still, she was also a precocious sort, graduating third out at two.
  • Hip 1311: Shesacurlinmytoes (Cafe Concerto, by Trempolino)
    • Five-year-old mare Shesacurlinmytoes goes to Keeneland as either a racing or broodmare prospect.  The fact that she is marked as a racing prospect is a bit curious; she has neither raced nor worked since April of 2015.  She was a $35,000 purchase at Keeneland September in 2012, and has started fifteen times so far.  She won once, grinding out a victory in a maiden $20,000 turf mile at Golden Gate in January of her three-year-old year.  She is half to three other winners.  Just Like Harry (Saarland) won a maiden claimer at two turns on dirt.  Both Letsgetitonmon (Maria’s Mon) and Star of Johar (Johar) won at both one turn and two, and Letsgetitonmon was third behind Ron the Greek in the 2010 LeComte Stakes (GIII).
  • Hip 1369: Whirl (Shag, by Dixieland Band)
    • Whirl sells as a broodmare, and is currently in foal to Morning Line.  The chestnut raced just twice, finishing eighth against maiden special weight at Churchill Downs both times.  Whirl’s dam Shag had precocity and class.  Shag won nine times, including her first three starts at age three.  The multiple stakes-winning mare did her best work going two turns on dirt, though her first two starts were victories at six furlongs.  Shag has produced four runners so far other than Whirl, all four of those others have won.  The most accomplished among them was three-quarter brother Strike a Deal (Smart Strike), a multiple graded stakes winning millionaire who did his best work going long on the grass.  A yet-unnamed full sister to Whirl, who is now two, sold for $200,000 at Keeneland September last year.  Sold to Joe Ciaglia, it would be no surprise to see that filly debut out west, should she make it to the racetrack.

Curlin Covers in Keeneland January

  • Hip 416: Exotic Behavior (Giant’s Causeway – Shesasurething, by Prospectors Gamble)
    • Exotic Behavior, a five-year-old mare, raced ten times, with one win.  That win came in a $30,000 maiden claimer at Santa Anita, going six and a half furlongs on dirt, in her seventh start.  This will be Exotic Behavior’s third time through an auction ring.  She sold for $52,000 as a yearling at OBS August 2012,, and then for $100,000 as a two-year-old in training at OBS April.  This mare has no foals of racing age yet, though she does have a More than Ready yearling colt on the ground.  Exotic Behavior is herself a half-sister to New York sire Bustin Stones (City Zip), undefeated in six starts, and a two-time graded stakes winner at seven furlongs.

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