Illinois-breds at Keeneland September: books 2-3

It’s that time again: the biggest yearling sale of the year, Keeneland September.

This year’s catalogue features fifteen Illinois-breds.  Blinkers Off will look at all of them, in a three-part series.  Here, we look at the yearlings in Book 2 and Book 3, five in total.  (There are no Illinois-breds in Book 1).  A future piece will look at the four yearlings form the land of Lincoln across Book 4 and Book 5, and the final installment will shine a light on the six Illinois-breds in Book 6.

Book 2

Hip 1056, bay colt by Street Sense out of Tamarind Hall (Graeme Hall) – this colt has been declared out.

A half-brother to this colt was a $195K RNA at Keeneland September last year.  He sold the next month at Fasig-Tipton October to Lothenbach Stables for $150K.  Now named Alpha Boy, the colt has raced twice in turf miles at Arlington, hitting the board against open maiden special company but not yet breaking his maiden.  Alpha Boy is the first of Tamarind Hall’s registered offspring to hit racing age.  Tamarind Hall turned out to be a classy racemare, but did not have precocity going for her.  She started her career in the claiming ranks at Woodbine, but really woke up at age four.  A winner of seven of her 28 career starts, she won the 2011 Bed o’ Roses Handicap (GIII) at Belmont, and hit the board in both the Ballerina (GI) and the Gallant Bloom (GII) later that summer.

Tamarind Hall’s dam, Turner’s Hall, was Grade I placed in Canada going two turns, but all three of her career victories came going short.  It seems this colt’s breeders did something similar here with this colt as they did with the 2014 yearling out of Tamarind Hall — breed their classy sprint mare to a proven stamina influence.

Book 3

Hip 1957, bay filly by Shanghai Bobby out of Bankruptcy Babe (Vicar) – this filly has been declared out.

Seeing this filly at a sale is intriguing — the female family is hardly fashionable, but it abounds with solid Illinois-bred runners.  Bankruptcy Babe has already produced two stakes winners.  Reigning Catfish (Bellamy Road) won the 2013 Springfield Stakes, and full sister Countess Cashmere won the 2014 Purple Violet Stakes.  The Purple Violet is the filles’ complement of the Springfield, and both are one-turn polytrack miles restricted to three-year-old Illinois-breds.  Reigning Catfish remains in training at age six, and holds his own in allowance and starter company.  Countess Cashmere is now in foal to Can the Man.  Bankruptcy Babe’s only other foal to race, Black Sherry (Aragorn), has not won a stakes race but has won a trio of dirt sprints against modest claiming company at ages three and four.

Looking back to Bankruptcy Babe’s dam, Natural Elegance was a five-time winner between ages two and four, though never hit the board in a stakes.  She did, however, produce Wild Gambler (Wild Again).  Wild Gambler was bred similarly to Bankruptcy Babe, as Vicar is a son of Wild Again.  Illinois-bred Wild Gambler raced from ages three through six, mainly on the Chicago circuit, and stole the six-furlong Chicagoland Handicap in 1998 at 10/1 odds.  He has proven his mettle as a breed-to-race Illinois stallion, and still stands at Indian Hills Thoroughbred Farm in Illinois.  He sired juvenile stakes winners Yukon’s Gambler and You and I Are Wild.  On the other end of the age spectrum, he also sired the hard-knocking Smiling Gambler, a mare who garnered yet another stakes placing this year at the age of eight, and most recently rallied for third in a salty allowance at Arlington on September 9.

Hip 2011, bay colt by Street Sense out of Crystal Symphony (Red Ransom)

This colt looks bred to go a route of ground.  In addition to being by 2010 Kentucky Derby winner Street Sense, the underside of the pedigree brings stamina as well, as well as turf influence.  Crystal Symphony won the My Charmer (GIII) at nine furlongs on the grass, and hit the board in other graded turf routes as well.  She produced Classic Campaign (Rahy), also a turf router.  Classic Campaign was a durable type who held his own in the listed and GIII level through age seven.  Though he was not Illinois-bred, he did get his lone graded stakes win here at Hawthorne when he won the 2007 Robert F. Carey Memorial Handicap (GIII).  Classic Campaign’s full sister Lindelaan (Rahy) was also a stakes winner at two turns on the turf, as was half-sister Cuyahoga (Theatrical).

More than usual for an Illinois-bred, there is precedent for this immediate family to garner sale interest.  Lindelaan was a $500,00 two-year-old in training at Fasig-Tipton February 2007, and sold for $625,000 in foal to Medaglia d’Oro at Keeneland September 2010.  Though Lindelaan was Kentucky-bred, some later Illinois-breds out of Crystal Symphony have garnered sales interest, as well.  Shy Girl (Bernardini) sold for $480,000 as a yearling at Keeneland September 2012.  She never raced, but she has a Jimmy Creed yearling colt, a Temple City filly born this year, and is back in foal to Temple City.  Tango Romeo (Speightstown), a still-unraced colt, was an $85,000 RNA at Keeneland September 2013, but sold the next year for $140,000 as a two-year-old in training at OBS April.

Hip 2140, bay filly by Broken Vow out of Millennia (Milwaukee Brew)

This filly is the first registered foal out of Millennia.  She broke her maiden first out at Del Mar, won a Florida-bred stakes at Gulfstream going two turns on the grass, and she was a consistent performer at allowance-optional and minor stakes levels into her six-year-old year.  Millennia was one of two stakes winners out of her dam Sararegal; she also produced Fatal Bullet (Red Bullet),  a Canadian champion sprinter who did his best on all-weather and turf.  Like Millennia, Fatal Bullet was also durable.  He graduated first out at two, and kept running (and winning) through age eight.

Millennia’s immediate family has been commercially successful.  Millennia herself went through the sales ring four times, and was a $70,000 yearling at OBS August 2008, and went for $100,000 the next year as a two-year-old at Fasig-Tipton February.  Conquest Serenade (Unbridled’s Song), a half to Millennia, sold for $350,000 at Keeneland September 2014.  Duchess Dancer (Congrats) was another six-figure yearling out of Sararegal, going for $180,000 at Keeneland September 2013.  Interestingly, though Fatal Bullet has been the best of her progeny on the track — he was the most modestly-priced of her foals in the sales ring, selling for just $27,000 as a two-year-old in training at the 2007 Adena Springs sale.

Hip 2204, dark bay or brown filly by Uncle Mo out of The Other Woman (Tiznow)

This foal is the first Illinois-bred by Uncle Mo, and the only Illinois-bred Uncle Mo yearling.  Though her dam The Other Woman did little on the track, she is a full sister to Informed, a multiple Grade II winner at two turns on synthetic surfaces and current California stallion.  This filly is The Other Woman’s fourth registered foal, and has every right to eventually find herself at two turns.

Her first, Kentucky-bred Dr. Nefario (Any Given Saturday), was a $5,000 short yearling at Keeneland January 2013, and a $50,000 yearling at Keeneland September later that year.  He is a two-time winner at two turns on dirt, and currently running in the claiming and allowance ranks at Thistledown.   New York-bred Super Hawk (Summer Bird), a three-year-old this year, was a $15,000 short yearling at Keeneland January, and a $47,000 RNA at the Washington Thoroughbred Breeders’ Association sale later that year.  Like his half-brother, he has taken to two turns.  He broke his maiden at a mile and a sixteenth on the Tapeta at Golden Gate, and was third behind Barkley in the Seattle Slew Stakes at Emerald Downs going a mile and a sixteenth on dirt.   In addition to the filly going through the ring this month, The Other Woman has one other Illinois-bred foal.  Two-year-old Midnite In Miami, bred by Michael Reavis and Frank Mancari, has been a regular on the Arlington worktab since mid-July, but has not yet raced.

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