A Crowded Family Portrait

We have to wonder if there has been a more prolific family in the last couple of years than that of the Verbatim mare, Right Word, the dam of three stakes winners: the graded scorer Ascutney and Words of War (both by Lord At War) and Word o’ Ransom (by Red Ransom).

Ascutney is dam of two graded winners, headed by Raven’s Pass, winner of the 2008 Breeders’ Cup Classic (gr. I). Words of War has produced the multiple graded winner and successful young sire, E Dubai (TrueNicks,SRO) , and grade I winner No Matter What (herself the dam of Rainbow View, the European Champion Two-Year-Old Filly of 2008, & a group I winner again in 2009 and Just as Well, who took the Northern Dancer Turf Stakes (gr. I) at Woodbine in 2009). Word o’ Ransom is dam of two stakes winners, including the 2008 Will Rogers Stakes (gr. III) victor Polonius, and is the graddam of Advice, who last year won the Lexington Stakes (gr. II).

The family added two more stakes winners on January 24 when Northern Station won the Nellie Morse Stakes at Laurel, and Flavor took the Forego Stakes at Turfway Park.

Northern Station is by Street Cry (IRE) (TrueNicks,SRO) , out of a mare by Quiet American (TrueNicks,SRO) , so is a Mr. Prospector/Mr. Prospector cross. We were a bit surprised at this pattern until we noted the Street Cry’s sire, Machiavellian is a Mr. Prospector/Hail to Reason, as is Quiet Word (out of Word o’ Ransom), the dam of Northern Station. We guess the parallel pattern, together with the quality of the sire and the family overcame the modest nick. Flavor (TrueNicks rated A++) is by Elusive Quality (TrueNicks,SRO) out of Right Spice, a Salt Lake (TrueNicks,SRO) daughter of Right Word, so is a three-parts-brother to Raven’s Pass.

There was another result worth noting among the older horses last weekend. The Palos Verdes Handicap (gr. II) went to first time stakes winner Kinsale King, who is one of two stakes winners from just two starters sired by Yankee Victor (by Saint Ballado) out of mares by Woodman. This is a similar cross to More Than Ready (TrueNicks,SRO), who is by a son of Halo (sire of Saint Ballado) out of a mare by Woodman. As much as anything, this is probably an affinity between Halo and Buckpasser (broodmare sire of Woodman).

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