Medaglia D'Oro shows his worth where the turf meets the surf
All the big breeding angles from the Grade 1 action at Del Mar
Medaglia D'Oro was the star turn among the sires at this year's Breeders' Cup at Del Mar, fielding two winners who neatly illustrated his versatility and global appeal.
The son of El Prado was on the mark with daughter Bar Of Gold in the Filly & Mare Sprint on the dirt and son Talismanic in the Turf, while another son, Bolt D'Oro, already a dual Grade 1 winner this season, was a sticking-on third in the Juvenile.
The meeting capped another outstanding year for Medaglia D'Oro, after the top-level triumphs of Dickinson, Elate, New Money Honey and Songbird.
Both Bar Of Gold and Talismanic are out of mares by Mr Prospector-line sires – Lemon Drop Kid is the damsire of the former, Machiavellian the latter – in a cross that had already been advertised by seven of the ten best progeny of Medaglia D'Oro by Racing Post Racings: Rachel Alexandra (out of a mare by Roar), Songbird (West Acre), Warrior's Reward (Seeking The Gold), Elate (Distorted Humor), Mshawish (Thunder Gulch), Violence (Gone West) and Passion For Gold (Thunder Gulch again).
Lemon Drop Kid was twice on the scoresheet as broodmare sire at the Breeders' Cup as his maternal granddaughter Forever Unbridled, by Unbridled's Song, took the Distaff. The son of Kingmambo was also represented at the meeting by son Beach Patrol, runner-up in the Turf.
Darley have, not unjustifiably, increased the covering fee for Medaglia D'Oro by a third to $200,000 for the 2018 breeding season at Jonabell Farm, where he will be joined by Australian Group 1-winning son Astern for the first time.
Ready and willing
More Than Ready, another sire who has excelled in both hemispheres, also posted a cross-surface Breeders' Cup double this weekend with Juvenile Fillies Turf heroine Rushing Fall and Sprint winner Roy H.
These were deserved first Grade 1 winners at North America's end of season championship, as the 20-year-old son of Southern Halo had sired three winners before but in races before they were upgraded to the highest level of prestige – More Than Real and Pluck in the Juvenile Fillies Turf and Juvenile Turf in 2010 and Regally Ready in the Turf Sprint a year later.
The sire of 20 Grade 1 winners around the world, More Than Ready will stand at WinStar Farm next year at an unchanged fee of $60,000, which appears a fair price in light of his achievements.
Hill 'n' Dale Farm resident Curlin achieved the feat of supplying the first two home in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile, Good Magic and Solomini, and he received another boost to his profile as his late sire Smart Strike was on the mark with with Dirt Mile winner Battle Of Midway.
Quality Road also recorded a winner (Caledonia Road in the Juvenile Fillies) and a runner-up (Abel Tasman in the Distaff) at this year's Breeders' Cup. Caledonia Road is the second winner at the meeting for Lane's End Farm's son of Elusive Quality after Hootenanny landed the Juvenile Turf in 2014.
Elusive Quality's influence was also felt through Roy H, who is out of one of the pensioned Jonabell Farm mainstay's daughters.
Dubawi has achieved many varied feats as a sire but had not yet notched a Breeders' Cup winner, so Godolphin will be delighted it was a homebred daughter of their flagship stallion in Wuheida who ended the hoodoo in the Filly & Mare Turf.
Dubawi's great rival in Europe, Galileo, did not post a winner at Del Mar but had two runners manage podium finishes. Highland Reel finished third in a bid to give the Coolmore colossus a fifth score in the Turf (after himself, Found, Magician and Red Rocks), while Rhododendron was second to Wuheida.
Taylor Made Farms veteran Northern Afleet continues to make a deeper impact at the Breeders' Cup than his chickenfeed fee entitles him to.
The 24-year-old had only two runners at the meeting and they were Mile hero World Approval and Classic fourth War Story, who outran huge odds to get close to the winner Gun Runner.
Northern Afleet already had on his record Sprint winner Amazombie, Juvenile runner-up Afleet Alex and Filly & Mare Sprint third Evening Jewel, while Afleet Alex has been responsible as a sire for a Juvenile winner in Texas Red and a Distaff third in Iotapa.
All that and Northern Afleet is available at just $5,000 in 2018.
Blue hens at the double
In 33 years of the Breeders' Cup, only three broodmares had ever been represented by multiple winners at the meeting: Hasili (Banks Hill and Intercontinental), Primal Force (Awesome Again and Macho Uno) and Sweet Life (Life Is Sweet and Sweet Catomine).
After the weekend's action, though, that tally now stands at five. Juvenile Turf winner Mendelssohn, out of Leslie's Lady, is a half-brother to dual Distaff and Juvenile Fillies heroine Beholder, while Mile scorer World Approval is out of the same dam – Win Approval – as Miesque's Approval, who won the same race in 2006.
Newtown Anner making a noise
Impressive Juvenile Fillies heroine Caledonia Road made it a transatlantic, back-to-back weekend double of top-level winners for owner Newtown Anner Stud, after Laganore had taken the Premio Lydia Tesio in Rome the week before.
Maurice Regan's Newtown Anner Stud, joint-owner of Caledonia Road with Zoom and Fish Stable and Charlie Spiring – is a growing force in racing and bloodstock, and the operation's silks, most associated with the brilliant middle-distance colt Fascinating Rock, were also carried by Beckford to a highly creditable fifth in the Juvenile Turf at Del Mar.
Big prices, big results
Eye-watering sums paid at auction don't always pay off, and there are numerous infamous examples of when they haven't, but two sales-toppers bought by Coolmore justified their hefty price-tags.
Mendelssohn was the $3 million most expensive lot at last year's Keeneland September Yearling Sale – no wonder when you consider he is not only a half-brother to Beholder, but also to exciting young US sire Into Mischief – and Declarationofpeace, the $2.6m topper in the same ring at the company's foal sale in 2015 as a half-brother to top-class pair Honor Code and Noble Tune, scored in the Listed Juvenile Turf Sprint on the Breeders' Cup undercard.
Next stop, the sales
The Breeders' Cup action is not quite over for this week, as plenty of fillies and mares who can claim successes at the championships are available to buy at the big breeding-stock sales in Kentucky this week.
Among those available to buy at Fasig-Tipton, which takes place on Monday, are the sensational Songbird, winner of the Juvenile Fillies two years ago and just denied by Beholder in a thriller of a Distaff last year, as well as a Juvenile Fillies Turf scorer in Catch A Glimpse and a Filly & Mare Sprint winner in Finest City.
LEADING SIRES IN BREEDERS' CUP GRADE 1 RACES 2017