Who to Follow in 2009?


Only one race for January 14, so I thought it was a good opportunity to take votes on which First-Crop Stallions to focus on in 2009. The poll will be open until Jan. 20 at midnight eastern time (I will include the poll in any blogs posted up until that date). Please vote for up to 5 horses, and note that there is also an empty blank to suggest your own.

Here are the candidates:

Afleet Alex (2002; Northern Afleet - Maggy Hawk by Hawkster)
Earnings: $2,765,800
Notable Wins: Preakness Stakes (gr. I), Belmont Stakes (gr. I), Hopeful Stakes (gr. I), Sanford Stakes (gr. I)
Excellences: 2005 US Champion 3-year old colt

Closing Argument (2002; Successful Appeal - Mrs. Greeley by Mr. Greeley)
Earnings: $986,984
Notable Wins: Holy Bull Stakes (gr. III), 2nd in the Kentucky Derby

Consolidator (2002; Storm Cat - Good Example (FR) by Crystal Glitters)
Earnings: $661,760
Notable Wins: Lane's End Breeders' Futurity (gr. I), San Felipe (gr. II)

Eddington (2001; Unbridled - Fashion Star by Chief's Crown)
Earnings: $1,216,760
Notable Wins: Pimlico Special (gr. I), Gulfstream Park Handicap (gr. II)

Eurosilver (2001; Unbridled's Song - Russian Tango by Nijinsky II)
Earnings: $622,310
Notable Wins: Lane's End Breeders' Futurity (gr. II), Skip Away (gr. III)

Ghostzapper (2000; Awesome Again - Baby Zip by Relaunch)
Earnings: $3,446,120
Notable Wins: Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I), Met Mile (gr. I), Woodward (gr. I), Vosburgh (gr. I)
Excellences: 2004 US Champion Older Horse & Horse of the Year

Kitten's Joy (2001; El Prado (IRE) - Kitten's First by Lear Fan)
Earnings: $2,075,791
Notable Wins: Joe Hirsch (gr. IT), Secretariat (gr IT), 2nd Breeders' Cup Turf (gr. IT)
Excellences: 2004 US Champion Grass Horse

Roman Ruler (2002; Fusaichi Pegasus - Silvery Swan by Silver Deputy)
Earnings: $1,220,800
Notable Wins: Haskell (gr. I), Dwyer (gr. II), Norfolk (gr. II), Best Pal (gr. II)

Rock Hard Ten (2001; Kris S. - Tersa by Mr. Prospector)
Earnings: $1,870,380
Notable Wins: Santa Anita Handicap (gr. I), Malibu (gr. I), 2nd Preakness Stakes

Saint Liam (2000; Saint Ballado - Quiet Dance by Quiet American)
Earnings: $4,456,995
Notable Wins: Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I), Woodward (gr. I), Stephen Foster (gr. I), Donn (gr. I)
Excellences: 2005 US Champion Older Horse & Horse of the Year
Saint Liam died after a paddock accident in 2006 and has only one crop.

Result for January 12

Hug It Out (Medaglia d'Oro) finished 5th in her allowance race at Fair Grounds. The winner was heavy-favorite Auspicious, who won her 2nd in a row by 6 lengths. She was green in the stretch, drifting in, but was well-clear of the rest of the field.

View Race Details and Equibase Chart

Result for January 13

Strike Jak (Peace Rules) finished 5th in a starter allowance contest at Tampa Bay Downs.

Equibase Chart

Midnight Mischief Seeks Higher Peace

January 14, 2009
Gulfstream Park Race 6
Maiden Special Weight
6.5 furlongs
3-year olds
Post Time: 3:42 PM ET HRTV

P Horse
1. Seeking the Sluice
2. Another Success
3. Strategic Decision
4. Stay Focused
5. Midnight Mischief
6. Satorius
7. Indy's Spell
8. Unforgivingmonarch
9. Primary Witness
10. Stomp
11. Higher Peace
12. Berry Berry Bueno
AE Indian Fog

Midnight Mischief (Medaglia d'Oro - Western Reel by Gone West) and Higher Peace (Peace Rules - Red Hot Chiquita by Mr. Expo) both debut in this 6.5 furlong Maiden Special Weight at Gulfstream. Both have been working in Florida. Midnight Mischief is out of stakes-placed Western Reel, who has produced 4 winners. Two of Midnight Mischief's siblings won their debuts. Higher Peace sold for $20,000 as a yearling, and is the first foal out of the winning mare Red Hot Chiquita. Red Hot Chiquita is half- or full-sister to 4 winners, including stakes winners Phaenna and Red Hot Rocket.

Stomp (Put It Back - Looks Like a Gem by Distant View) has run twice, finishing 2nd at Saratoga on July 25, and 2nd at Saratoga on August 8. Stomp, who sold for $65,000 as a 2-year old, is out of a winning mare who has produced one winner from two to race.

Strategic Decision (Distorted Humor - Beautiful Pleasure by Maudlin) finished 3rd in his only start, a 6.5 furlong Maiden Special Weight at Turfway on December 12. He is a son of champion and multi-millionaire Beautiful Pleasure. Beautiful Pleasure has produced grade I stakes-placed Dr. Pleasure who has earned $333,098.

Stay Focused (Scorpion - Stay in Touch by Fort Chaffee) and Indy's Spell (A. P. Indy - Charm by Polish Numbers) both finished 6th in their only starts. Stay Focused's race was on December 29 at Calder. He is a half-brother to 3 winners. Indy's Spell ran on November 29 at Churchill Downs. He sold for $350,000 as a yearling. Indy's Spell's dam, Charm, was a stakes-placed earner of $110,831. Charm has produced 2 winners, including stakes winner Whirl who earned $189,955. Charm is a half-sister to champion Banshee Breeze.

The only other entrant with experience is Another Success (Successful Appeal - Another Mulca by Allen's Prospect), who was 10th in his only race, on November 29 at Aqueduct. Another Mulca, dam of Another Success, was a group I winner in Puerto Rico who earned $277,705. Another Mulca has produced 2 winners.

Selling for $270,000 as a yearling was Berry Berry Bueno (Unbridled's Song - Buffalo Berry (IRE) by Sri Pekan). Grade III winner Buffalo Berry, dam of Berry Berry Bueno, was a debut winner who earned $130,590 overall. Berry Berry Bueno is a half-brother to grade III winner Chattahoochee War and 2 other winners. Two of his siblings were debut winners.

Satorius (More Than Ready - Access by Forty Niner) sold for $60,000 as a yearling, and $145,000 as a 2-year old. He is a half-brother to 6 winners, including stakes-placed runners Reverse Psychology and Inomuff. Two siblings were debut winners.

Seeking the Sluice (Seeking the Gold - Classic Slew by Seattle Slew) is a half- or full-brother to 6 winners, including stakes winner Surging River. Four of these were debut winners.

Unforgivingmonarch (Came Home - Forgiving Monarch by Wavering Monarch) is out of stakes-placed Forgiving Monarch, who earned $220,525. Forgiving Monarch has produced 2 winners, including stakes winner Discreet Commander.

Stakes winner Deb's Honor, dam of Primary Witness (Hennessy - Deb's Honor by Affirmed), earned $182,973 in a 22 race career. She has produced 5 winners from 5 to run, including grade III winner Primary Suspect. Primary Suspect, who was a debut winner, is a full-brother to Primary Witness.

On the AE list is Indian Fog (Indian Charlie - Fog Dance by Unbridled's Song), who sold for $140,000 as a yearling. Indian Fog is a half-brother to one winner, and his dam is a half-sister to 5 winners.


New to the Blog

January 12

Working 3 furlongs in :39.40 at Gulfstream Park was Great Cause (colt; Congaree - Grand Mirage by Southern Halo). Great Cause brought $50,000 as a weanling, and is a half-brother to winner Caty Ray.

Saarinna (filly; Saarland - Rominna by Crafty Prospector) worked 3 furlongs in :39.80 at Bowie. She sold for $25,000 as a weanling, and is a half-sister to 4 winners.

Pina Colada (filly; Speightstown - Foolishly by Broad Brush) worked 3 furlongs in :38.20 at Palm Meadows. Pina Colada sold for $105,000 as a yearling, and is the first foal out of the stakes winner Foolishly.

January 13

Cinderella's Wish (filly; Speightstown - Godmother by Show'em Slew) worked 3 furlongs in :36.80 at Fair Grounds. Selling for $300,000 as a yearling, Cinderella's Wish is out of grade III winner Godmother. Godmother has produced 3 winners from 3 to run.


Leave a Comment:


I figure Afleet Alex is a shoo-in for the results.  I would suggest if he is in, then Unforgettable Max should also make the cut.  Should make for an interesting sibling rivalry.  Not often do we see a pair of full brothers start their stud careers at the same time.

13 Jan 2009 7:27 PM
Abbie Knowles

As a massive fan of Seattle Slew i shall be keeping an eye open for any Stallion who  has Seattle Slew's name anywhere in their pedigree!  My tip for the top is the gorgeous Proud Accolade!!!!

13 Jan 2009 7:37 PM
Blood-Horse Staff

RC - I was thinking about that myself (Afleet Alex vs. Unforgettable Max), it's an interesting idea. There were full-brother first-crop sires in 2008; Roar of the Tiger and Tumblebrutus. They are both full-brothers to Giant's Causeway. Roar of the Tiger won that contest.

13 Jan 2009 8:00 PM

I loved, loved, loved Kitten's Joy as a race horse, so I hope he makes your cut. (hey, you need to have some turf representation).

13 Jan 2009 8:21 PM
Dreamer's Mom

Abbie Knowles-I am with you all the way!  Our first stallion was a son of Fast Play-wonderful babies!  We now have a son of Mineshaft-he will start covering mares next week!

13 Jan 2009 8:28 PM

eurosilver reminds me of concerto when he first came out. he will be a consistent sire who can  sire a triple crown contender.

13 Jan 2009 8:41 PM

Why is Pollard's Vision not on your list for 2009? He earned well over one million and was a wonderful race horse

13 Jan 2009 9:03 PM

I agree. Kittens Joy. Let's follow a turf runner!

13 Jan 2009 9:48 PM
Zenyatta Junior

This is an all star list for the freshman sires this year. Afleet Alex, Rock Hard Ten, Roman Ruler... it's going to be an exciting year.

The other stallions not on the list that I look forward to are:


Forest Danger

High Fly



North Light (IRE)


Wando (being Canadian and wanting to see him succeed. He is Canada's most recent Triple Crown winner after all)

Value Plus

and I loved Oratory and Offlee Wild. It's going to be a great year! Any reports on whether not Rock Hard Ten's foals are as big as he is?

Pollard's Vision


Proud Accolade (will love to see his foals vs. Afleet Alex as those two had a bit of a rivalry as two year olds) and although he is in Japan, Roses in May (I hope some of his foals make it here to race.

I like Southern Image as well.

13 Jan 2009 9:53 PM

Several of these candidates are already on my short list to watch.  Afleet Alex is, as RC said, a shoo-in to make the cut, and I'm voting for Closing Argument, Consolidator, and Rock Hard Ten as well.  I'm torn between Ghostzapper, Kitten's Joy, and Roman Ruler for my 5th selection so I'm going to have to let it cook a little bit.

My write-in candidate is a strong one for me.  I think Offlee Wild should be seriously considered.  A son of the late (RIP) Wild Again out of a Seattle Slew half-sister to Dynaformer.....there's your Seattle Slew, Abbie Knowles!  He's standing at Darley Jonabell so it's a given that he's been supported.  I hope the voters out there will take a long hard look at him.

The only other one that's not on the list of candidates that I think deserves a mention is Leroidesanimeaux, though he's probably going to be a bit challenged in the precocity department.  I just loved that horse, though.  I'd like to see him get some consideration at least.

I'll finalize my vote by this weekend, but pleeeeze guys and gals, don't overlook Offlee Wild.  This one has the potential to be very dangerous in the breeding shed!

13 Jan 2009 10:22 PM

Dreamer's Mom,can I cover you?  lol..j/k.

Seriously though,I've noticed there's not any Slew-line Sires in the mix...again!!!  What gives?..this is the most prolific sire-line out there,no doubt.

For 2008 I recommended following the Tapits',to no avail,and we all know how they turned out.

13 Jan 2009 11:10 PM
Pleasantly Perfect Fan

Powerscourt is one that I am very, very interested in!! I also had to vote for Closing Argument because he was my Derby pick that year and at 70/1 he didnt let me down,finishing 2nd. He was very consistant and should throw good babies.

13 Jan 2009 11:31 PM

Pollard's Vision

13 Jan 2009 11:38 PM

I think we whould follow Saint Liam as this will be his only crop to race.  How sad that he died that soon.  I also like Afleet Alex and Kitten's Joy.

14 Jan 2009 7:45 AM

If there is one under the radar horse to look out for his name is St Averil. He's by Saint Ballado, was a Gr. 2 winner and Gr.1 placed speedy miler and has great confirmation. Keep in mind Kris S., Dynaformer and Saint Ballado himself all had very humble beginnings and I think St Averil will follow suit.

14 Jan 2009 10:08 AM
MK in FL

Everyone is forgetting Wildcat Heir. A rocket of a racehorse, from a precocious family. He also had half the state of Florida breeding to him with I think 160+ mares to him his first year. He should definitely make the list and I am sure he will have a lot of early runners. I also like horses like Rock Hard Ten and Kittens Joy, but not for what everyone wants....a fast two year old.

14 Jan 2009 11:22 AM
Karen in Indiana

Oh, thank you, Paseana! I will write in Offlee Wild. I fell in love with Wild Again last year when I saw him & then noticed how many good horses have him in their pedigree. I hope Offlee Wild does well & brings more attention to that line.

14 Jan 2009 12:53 PM

what about Borrego?

14 Jan 2009 4:41 PM
Blood-Horse Staff

nakayama - Borrego's first foals arrived in 2008, so he will not have 2-year olds until 2010.

14 Jan 2009 4:48 PM
Abbie Knowles

Good luck with your Fast Play and Mineshaft stallions, Tiznowbaby.  Tiznow is a great stallion!  Also liked his brother Tizbud.  What has happened to him?  Anyone know?  Not impressed with the official choice of Stallions.  Agree about Offlee Wild.  Loved him and he was raced for many seasons so is tough and durable as well as having a smashing pedigree!  But what about Purge (by PULPIT - sire of leading Freshman Sire Tapit and leading Second Season Sire Sky Mesa)?  Or Mingun by A P Indy out of Miesque so a half brother to Kingmambo?  Or Oratory another by Pulpit?  Or my original selction the beautiful and very talented Proud Accolade who is a grandson of Septieme Ciel by Seattle Slew.  Or Suave by that wonderful Sire of Sires A P Indy!!!!!  I think anyone of those will do very well and others too!  Seattle Slew has a very dominant male line as well as being an exceptional broodmare sire as A P Indy is too!  Then there is also Silver Train by Old Trieste!  And as I am  a big fan of the Darley Stallions i shall be watching the progeny of Dubawi and Shamardal with great interest too!

God Bless

Best wishes


14 Jan 2009 5:58 PM
Zenyatta Junior

My bad with Borrego there. When I looked at the incoming sires list for 2006 on the stallion register it showed his name. I didn't think it sounded right either.

I can't wait for the two year olds to begin!

14 Jan 2009 7:17 PM

I'm really looking forward to seeing Singletary's first foals race this year.

His kids should love the synthetics as well as the grass!

14 Jan 2009 8:56 PM

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