Three yearlings bred by Robert and Janice McNair's Stonerside Stable sold for $3 million or more apiece last year at public auction. This year, the yearling market won't be pumped up by the McNairs' best young stock.
Meeting tax requirements had been a factor in the Stonerside program's recent commercial emphasis, according to Adger.
"We've had two big years of selling horses, and the McNairs want to keep most of what we think are the best yearlings and race those," said John Adger, Stonerside's bloodstock and racing manager. "We are going to be putting about 40 yearlings in our racing stable for next year. For the next couple of years, the McNairs want to race a lot of homebreds. We are going to take a chance and see if maybe we can come up with maybe another Kentucky Derby (gr. I) horse."
The yearlings that the McNairs plan to retain include an A.P. Indy
colt out of champion Chilukki, a Grand Slam
half-brother to grade I winner Bob and John; an A.P. Indy filly out of grade II winner Sahara Gold and from the family of Breeders' Cup Sprint (gr. I) winner Desert Stormer; a Storm Cat
colt out of grade II winner Star of Broadway; an Empire Maker
filly out of grade I winner Rings a Chime; and an Awesome Again
half-brother to grade I winner Congaree.
"We have a knockout Storm Cat filly out of Miss Halory (half-sister to five graded winners, including Halory Hunter and Van Nistelrooy
), but we own her (in partnership) with Overbrook Farm, and she's going to be sold in September (at Keeneland)," Adger said.
Stonerside's top selling yearlings of 2005 were Sahara Heat, a $3.4-million A.P Indy -- Sahara Gold colt; Black Cat Crossing, a $3.1-million son of Storm Cat--Rings a Chime colt; and Hawk Eagle, a $3-million Storm Cat -- Ajina colt.