Anyone who breeds to a first-year stallion must be considered a high-stakes gambler.
Entering sires are an unknown quantity. They might be the next A.P. Indy (on SRO) or Unusual Heat (pedigree) -- but more likely, they're going to be on the other end of the spectrum and will never amount to anything great. So why do breeders send mares to incoming stallions? And in huge numbers?!?
There're a lot of reasons. Commercial appeal (first-year sires are hot at the yearling sales) ... bloodlines (if you can't get to the sire you want, breed to one of his new sons) ... price (some newer sires fall under the radar and don't fill their books immediately -- the farm will make great deals to increase his book size in his proving year). The biggest reason, though, is probably hope. Maybe I'll pick the next hot sire. Maybe I've gotten in on the ground floor. Maybe I'll breed the next Triple Crown winner. Maybe I'll look like a genius.
For the record, my pick for the incoming class of 2008 was Purim (on SRO). He's got lines I like both top and bottom. Dynaformer is one of those sires whose influence won't be fully appreciated for another couple of generations -- but I know we'll be looking for Dynaformer bloodlines in 30 years, and his son Purim is a logical source.
Add Purim's female family and it's hard not to see the appeal: he's out of a Lord at War (ARG) mare and his fourth dam is Aspidistra, dam of champions Ta Wee and Dr. Fager. But Purim's line to Aspidistra doesn't come through Ta Wee or Magic like you find more frequently. This time, it's Aspidistra through Quit Me Not (who's also third dam of the In Reality-line stallion Judge T C (pedigree) now standing in Saudi Arabia much to the detriment of American bloodlines -- but that's another rant and I'll save that one for another time).
Purim ran enough (23 times from ages 3 to 5) to indicate a certain degree of soundness. He won from 6 to 8.5 furlongs and won graded stakes on both turf and dirt. The Dynaformer blood indicates that he might've been able to stretch out his form over a longer distance, as well.
Purim is a beautiful dark bay and I'm guessing we'll see a few of his first crop factoring into the national spotlight come 2012. I'll undoubtedly comment more on him before then -- but wanted it on record that I've been watching him all along.
Anyone have other picks for Best Incoming Sire of 2008, now that breeding season is nearing its end?