Gentle Reminder

On a quiet weekend for U.S. racing, Treat Gently gave another example of just how versatile the excellent trio of sprinter/milers by Green Desert – Oasis Dream, Invincible Spirit, and Cape Cross – are as sires, with her win in the 11-furlong Sheepshead Bay Stakes (gr. II).

Oasis Dream, who was a pure sprinter, and whose third crop are currently only three, has Midday and Querari as group I winners at ten furlongs or more, and four group winners in that range, including one of this year’s top U.S. older mares, Tuscan Evening; Invincible Spirit, a six furlong performer, seems a little more speed oriented, but his best is French Derby (gr. I) winner Lawman, and he also has 1½-mile group winner Allied Powers; and Cape Cross, the miler of the bunch, sired Sea the Stars, a superstar at 1½ miles; the marvelous classic distance performer Ouija Board; and at least ten other group winners who’ve scored at ten furlongs or more, Treat Gently among them.

Treat Gently (TrueNicks A+) is out of a mare by Sadler’s Wells son In the Wings, and so has Northern Dancer combined with Never Bend in both grandsires, along with Bold Reason, the half-brother to Never Bend, who appears as broodmare sire of Sadler’s Wells. The second dam is Kerali, best known through her daughter Hasili (dam of Banks Hill, Champs Elysees, Intercontinental, Dansili, Heat Haze, and Cacique – all from the same Danzig sire line as Treat Gently – and of Deluxe, a Storm Cat daughter who ran second in the Prix Saint-Alary (gr. I) this weekend). Kerali is also ancestress of several other major stakes winners, most notably, Champion Turf Horse Leroidesanimaux.

There were only two other U.S. graded stakes this weekend. The Louisville Handicap (gr. III) over 1½ miles on turf went to Free Fighter (TrueNicks A). He is by Out of Place from the stakes-winning Prized mare, Taxable Deduction. This is an extension of a specific cross – Out of Place with mares by Kris S., sire of Prized – that produced four stakes winners from 38 starters, two graded. Interestingly enough, Cox’s Ridge – sire of Out of Place – and Kris S. both topped out at around 17hh. Free Fighter has an extra twist in his pedigree, as his great-grandsire Best Turn is a Turn-to/Swaps cross and his third dam is a Swaps/Turn-to cross. The Roberto line was a dominating influence in this race, as the runner-up, Bearpath, is by Dynaformer, and third, Brass Hat, by Prized.

The other graded event was the Lazaro Barrera Memorial Stakes (gr. III), won by Smiling Tiger, a son of Hennessy’s three-parts-brother, Hold That Tiger (now in France). He’s out of a mare by Unbridled’s brother Cahill Road, and is TrueNicks rated A++, there having already been five stakes winners from 27 starters by sons of Storm Cat out of Cahill Road mares.

A couple of less commercially-known Sadler’s Wells horses, both based in Canada, had weekend stakes winners. Three-year-old Bay to Bay (TrueNicks A++) is by Sligo Bay (IRE) (TrueNicks,SRO) (out of a sister to Glorious Song, Saint Ballado, and Devil’s Bag, and closely related to Singspiel) and out of a mare by With Approval. The Ballade Stakes in Canada went to Impossible Time, who is by Not Impossible (brother to grade I winner Perfect Soul). She is TrueNicks A++, and is out of a Pleasant Colony mare. Her granddam is by Halo out of a Northern Dancer mare, and is a reverse cross to Sadler’s Wells, who is Northern Dancer/Hail to Reason.

Another weekend double was that by the prolific City Zip (TrueNicks,SRO) , who was represented Workin For Hops (out of a mare by Citidancer, by Dixieland Band, and TrueNicks A++) who took the Arlington Classic, and Unzip Me, winner of the Great Lady M. Stakes. Unzip Me (TrueNicks A++) is out of a mare by Arazi, and her dam is a parallel Blushing Groom/Nijinsky II cross to the dam of Carson City, sire of City Zip. Unzip Me is one of four stakes winners by City Zip with inbreeding to Blushing Groom, and the weekend saw another son of Carson City benefit from the pattern. This was Five Star Day, whose son Gabriel’s Smile (dam by Rahy), won the It’s Only Money Stakes at Charles Town. This is another A++ cross, and Five Star Day also has stakes winner Helen Belen out of a mare by Blushing Groom line horse Cherokee Run.

In Canada on Sunday, Biofuel, who might well have been a factor in the destination of the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies but for getting a bump at a vital point, took the La Lorgnette Stakes, and may well head back to grade I company for her next start. She is by Stormin Fever (TrueNicks,SRO) out of an Indian Charlie (TrueNicks,SRO) mare (we’ve said before we really like the Storm Cat/Indian Charlie combination) and is the second stakes winner on the cross (TrueNicks A++).

Also in Canada and on Monday, the Lady Angela Stakes for three-year-old fillies, went to Jesters Jazz, who is the first stakes winner from the first crop of Mr. Jester (by Silver Deputy), a sire we recommended as a purchase for the Dominion. Out of a Highland Ruckus mare, Jesters Jazz is bred on the excellent Silver Deputy/Bold Ruckus cross (TrueNicks A+). This pedigree is particularly interesting as Highland Ruckus has a granddam by Victoria Park (half-brother to the dam of Vice Regent, the grandsire of Silver Deputy) out of a mare by Nearctic (paternal grandsire of Vice Regent). Jesters Jazz has a granddam by a son of Exclusive Native, a horse from the same family as Silver Deputy’s sire Deputy Minister.

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