Book Six – Episode 3: Honest Ohioans

Episode 3 pays a visit to the Ohio Thoroughbred Breeders & Owners Sale, coming up October 7.

The sale is a mixed sale — but it’s yearling season, and I zoom in on Hip 33, a yearling filly by new Ohio sire Cryptolight out of the Shakespeare mare Be True.  Cryptolight is a rarity in the stud barn nowadays, a horse to raced to age 11.  Both his female family and Be True’s pop up frequently in state-bred stakes ranks, though some close dam-side relatives have shown up in stakes races in New York and California, too.

Get to know an honest Ohio pedigree in the third episode of Book Six!

Listen here, or subscribe on Google Play or Apple Podcasts so you never miss an episode!

Book Six – Episode 2: World-Class Bloodlines, Mid-Atlantic Focus

Book Six continues with Episode 2, which turns focus to the Fasig-Tipton Midlantic Yearling Sale.

Joining me on this week’s edition of Book Six is Melissa Bauer-Herzog of Pyrois Media!

Since there are two of us, we discuss two hips of Fasig-Tipton Midlantic in detail — both of whom are by stallions whose first crops are two this year, and both of whom have fascinating pages.

We start with a look at hip 19, a filly by Real Solution out of the Perfect Soul mare Winsome Woman, who goes through the ring on October 1.  This filly is inbred to one of the classiest stallions of the last forty years.

Then, we discuss hip 162, a colt by Super Ninety Nine out of the Touch Gold mare Fleet and Fancy who goes through the ring on October 2.  His pedigree is a perfect example of looking to a regional sire to reproduce breeding patterns that have succeeded on the biggest stages.

Dive into them both in the second episode of Book Six!

Listen here, or subscribe on Google Play or Apple Podcasts so you never miss an episode!

Book Six – Episode 1: Seeing Double Maplejinsky

Welcome to the first episode of my new podcast!

Entitled Book Six, it is dedicated to unearthing the hidden gems in sales catalogs: pedigrees from the back pages of national sales, or from regional sales, that get my heart racing and my mind churning.

The first episode is right here, and fittingly, it discusses a horse coming up in Book Six of Keeneland September: hip 3848, by Tale of Ekati out of Indy’s Million.  This colt is inbred 3×3 to Maplejinsky.

This got me wondering: what’s so great about Maplejinsky?  Have her lines been crossed before?  What happened?

Find out in the first episode of Book Six!

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.

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for the first time in ten years, a seven-figure Illinois-bred

When writing (or tweeting) about Illinois-breds in the auction ring, it jumps out enough when an Illinois-bred horse commands five figures.  Six figures, for a horse bred here, is eye-popping.  It happens — recent examples include My Option and Magnetic Miss — but not often.


Until yesterday, that had not happened since Sassy Pants commanded $4,500,000 at Keeneland November in 2006.

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Illinois-breds at Keeneland September: Book 6

Book 6 of Keeneland September runs on Friday and Saturday of this week, and marks the end of the sale.  This book also contains the last four Illinois-bred yearlings in the sale.  Buried here in Book 6 is another one of the five yearlings highlighted here among 2014’s Illinois-bred foals to watch out for: the only member of Musketier’s first crop to be bred in the state.

Let’s meet the last few Illinois-breds of Keeneland September!

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Illinois-breds at Keeneland September: Book 5

Last night, Blinkers Off began to tackle the Illinois-breds in the later books of Keeneland September, with a look at Book 4.

Today, attention turns to the six Illinois-breds who remain in Book 5 of Keeneland September.  There were eight originally entered, but two have been declared out.  Hip 3442, a Fort Prado colt out of Radiant Rocket (Peteski) is an out, as is Hip 3505, a Giant Oak colt out of Strike for Home (Smart Strike).

Without further ado, meet the Illinois-breds of Book 5!

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Illinois-breds at Keeneland September: Book 4

Throughout this week we delve deeper into the books of the Keeneland September sale.  For followers of Illinois breeding and racing, this is where it gets fun.  Though the three Illinois-bred yearlings in Book 1 were bred well, none of them came from families deeply entrenched in Illinois.  For most of the yearlings in the later books, it is a different story.  Many of the dams have a stronger connection to the state: either they were bred here, they raced here, or they have already produced runners on the local circuit.

No Illinois-breds found their way into Book 2 or Book 3, but Books 4 through 6 are peppered with yearlings from the Land of Lincoln.  Blinkers Off will be here through the week with a look at each of them.

Coverage of the second week of Keeneland September begins here, with the six Illinois-breds in Book 4.

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Illinois-breds at Keeneland September: Book 1

This year’s catalogue at Keeneland September features 21 Illinois-bred yearlings, only one of whom has been declared out so far.  Out of those, three are assigned to Book 1, tantamount to the select portion of the sale.

Previews of the other Illinois-breds in books four, five, and six are forthcoming.  The yearlings in those books include half-siblings to some of my favourites: In the Chamber, Tizgorgeous, Frontier Force, Big Tom Prado.  They also include two out of the five Illinois-bred foals of 2014 who I discussed at Blinkers Off earlier this year.

However, there are three slated to go early in the sale, in Book 1; this is a look at each of them.

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Curlin babies at Keeneland September

Last night, Blinkers Off took a look at the broadest pattern among Curlin’s progeny at Keeneland September: Curlin babies out of A.P. Indy mares.  Today, attention turns instead to the more immediate question: who are the Curlin babies who will walk through the sales ring this month?

Fourteen yearlings by Curlin were originally entered in the Keeneland September sale.  Hip 2669, a bay colt out of Seattle Society (A.P. Indy), was declared out; the other thirteen remain in the sale.

Here is a look at each of those thirteen yearlings, with an eye toward how well the Mr. Prospector sire line (and, specifically, the Smart Strike branch, if it has been tried) has done with each of the dams.

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Curlin babies out of A. P. Indy mares

Keeneland September gets underway on Monday, and with it comes another early glimpse at Curlin’s fifth crop.

Fourteen yearlings by Curlin were originally entered in the sale. As of today, only one has been declared out: Hip 2669, a colt out of Seattle Society (A.P. Indy). Even with this hip out of the sale, A.P. Indy remains the most popular damsire among the Curlin babies heading to the ring at Keeneland September. Three other hips by Curlin (2152, 2203, and 2296) come from A.P. Indy mares. With five members of Curlin’s fifth crop being out of A.P. Indy mares, this is still a significant portion of that set who will be available at Keeneland November.

This crop continues a familiar tune of Curlin babies coming out of A.P. Indy mares.

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