Sometimes the racing gods smile on you after the sale gods don't. So, it's not always bad news when a consignor buys back a horse - at least in the long run.
Jane Schosberg enjoyed a delayed return on her investment Oct. 12 when Sunshine for Life, trained by her son, Richard, defeated Criticism by a half-length in the Athenia Handicap (gr. IIIT) at Belmont Park. As the longest shot in the field, the 4-year-old daughter of Giant's Causeway paid $49 to win to her backers.
"It just shows you that you have to have a plan B, if not a plan C and D, with a sale horse," said Jane's husband Paul, the day after the race. "Jane always buys weanlings with the primary interest of reselling them as yearlings, but she also buys them with the idea that she would absolutely be happy to keep them and race them (if they don't bring as much money as she would like)."
In 2004, Jane Schosberg purchased Sunshine for Life as a weanling (through Gus Bell) for $385,000 at the Keeneland November breeding stock sale. The following year, Schosberg consigned the Giant's Causeway filly through Denali Stud to the Keeneland September yearling sale, but bought the filly back for $340,000.
Schosberg tried to sell Sunshine for Life again in 2006 through Kirkwood Stables at the Keeneland April sale of 2-year-olds in training, but ended up taking home the filly again when the $300,000 final bid fell short of the Sunshine for Life's reserve.
Paul Schosberg said it was a surprise to the family when Sunshine for Life ended up being bought back twice because she developed well physically and never had a major setback. Meanwhile, expenses for the filly grew without any return on the original investment. But with the Athenia win, "she doesn't owe us one thing at this point," Schosberg said.
Sunshine for Life will be pointed for the Nov. 1 Long Island Handicap (gr. IIIT), and the Schosbergs plan to race the chestnut filly again as a 5-year-old.
"We think that fillies racing from the mid-point of their 4-year-old year through their 5-year-old year are at the top of their game," Paul Schosberg said.