Prior to this year’s Breeders’ Cup World Championships, Frank Stronach ranked only behind the late Allen Paulson on the list of Cup earnings for breeders. With four Breeders’ Cup winners to his credit, Stronach-bred horses had earned $6.2 million, compared with $7.8 million for Paulson.
The owner of Adena Springs Farm took a major step toward the top when his homebred Ginger Punch earned $1.22 million as winner of the $2 million Emirates Airline Breeders’ Cup Distaff (gr. I).
In addition to being a Stronach homebred, the filly was sired by Awesome Again , who wore Stronach’s silks to victory in the 1998 Breeders’ Cup Classic. The 13-year-old stallion stands at Adena Springs near Paris, Ky., where his 2007 stud fee was $150,000. In addition to Ginger Punch, Awesome Again is represented this year by nine other stakes winners, including Sugar Shake, another grade I winner raced by Stronach, and grade II winner Awesome Gem.
Stronach’s additional Breeders’ Cup successes as a breeder include a Classic victory in 2004 by Ghostzapper, a Juvenile win in 2000 with Macho Uno , and a victory in the 2000 Filly & Mare Turf with Perfect Sting. All three also were raced by Stronach, who was second going to this year’s Breeders’ Cup on the owners’ list by earnings, excluding horses raced in partnership.
Ginger Punch was produced from Nappelon, a daughter of Bold Revenue who won 17 races from 70 starts, including the Comely Stakes (gr. II). Nappelon was purchased by Stronach for $210,000 at the 1998 Keeneland November sale when the mare was in foal to Broad Brush. The mare’s first foal, Rawston, was stakes-placed and Ginger Punch is the first stakes winner for her dam. Consigned to the 2006 Keeneland January mixed sale, Nappelon was purchased for $15,000 by Beth Ann Brown-Gambone.
The Distaff winner has proven to be a fortuitous runner for Stronach, considering that he attempted to sell her at public auction. Consigned by Adena Springs to the farm’s 2005 2-year-olds in training sale, the filly was retained by her breeder after the bidding stopped at $27,000.