Fourstardave H. (gr. II)
(gr. IIT , 8.5f ,)
Hennessy Blue Begum , by With Approval
BVegso Racing Stable, FL.; OPeter Vegso; TWilliam I. Mott
(DK B/ h,
Dynaformer Endless Parade , by Williamstown
BRoger W. Clark, KY.; ODogwood Stable; TGeorge Weaver
Hussonet Colonna Traiana (CHI) , by Roy
BHaras De Pirque, CHI.; OMelnyk Racing Stables, Inc.; TTodd A. Pletcher
At age 7, Silver Tree is having his best year yet at the races and added to his resume with a determined three-quarters of a length victory over Drum Major in the Aug. 5 Fourstardave Handicap (gr. IIT) at Saratoga.
The chestnut son of Hennessy came into the Fourstardave off a victory July 15 in the Caesar Rodney Stakes and also won the March 4 Appleton Handicap (gr. IIIT). Bill Mott trains the homebred horse for Peter Vegso.
“He is doing phenomenally,” said Vegso, who did not attend the race because he was returning from Hawaii. “He could be the new The Tin Man. I talked to Bill a little while after the race when they were giving (Silver Tree) a bath, and he said he was totally relaxed, like he hadn’t been in a race.”
Silver Tree’s stakes victories include the 2003 Virginia Derby, 2004 Bernard Baruch Handicap (gr. IIT), 2005 Tropical Turf Handicap (gr. IIIT), and 2006 Cherokee River Stables Turf Classic Stakes. Vegso is currently considering racing him in the Cox’s Plate (Aust-I) but has not finalized the horse’s schedule.
“We are still toying with this Australia thing a little bit,” Vegso said. “I have to think about him next year in terms of what we are going to do with him and whether we do turn him into a The Tin Man and keep running him. If he keeps behaving the way he is behaving, we will.”
Although Aury and Ralph Todd’s The Tin Man is a gelding, Silver Tree is a horse, which adds to the things Vegso must consider. He already stands Silver Tree’s graded stakes-winning full brother, Orchard Park, at his farm in Florida.
“We breed seven or eight mares to Orchard Park a year, and that seems to keep him happy,” Vegso said. “I know the Australians are somewhat interested in Silver Tree because they like sons of Hennessy, but nothing really is percolating. I just want to make sure that he has a good, happy life. He is such a good guy.”
Vegso bred Orchard Park and Silver Tree out of the German stakes-placed With Approval mare Blue Begum. He bought the chestnut mare in 1998 for $200,000 at the Keeneland November mixed sale from Glencrest Farm, agent, while she was carrying Orchard Park. Blue Begum died in 2002 as the result of colic.
Hennessy is the sire of 57 stakes winners, including additional 2007 added-money winners Sunrise Bacchus (Jpn-I), Mary Delaney (gr. II), India (gr. III), Liquor Cabinet (gr. III), Dance The Waves (Aust-III), Western Art (in England), and Etenia (in France). The 14-year-old son of Storm Cat stood the 2007 season at Ashford Stud near Versailles, Ky., for a fee of $60,000.—A.H.D.