Spring days in Central Kentucky can be cold and miserable, with sleet and snow sometimes falling. But weather was beautiful April 1 during the under tack show for the Keeneland sale of 2-year-olds in training. With the sun shining and temperatures in the 70s, a Pulpit colt benefited from the almost perfect conditions and turned in the fastest quarter mile work, covering the distance in :20 3/5 over the Keeneland main oval's synthetic Polytrack surface.
Consigned by Eddie Woods, agent, the chestnut juvenile was the show’s sixth horse to breeze and the first that worked a quarter. He is out of the unraced Affirmed mare Checkerspot and is a half brother to Salty Romance (by Salt Lake), who captured the 2003 Boyd Gaming’s Delta Princess Stakes at Delta Downs and finished second in the 2004 Santa Ysabel Stakes (gr. III) at Santa Anita Park.
Dr. and Mrs. Stuart E. Brown II and Abbie S. Wood bred the colt in Kentucky. He was a $95,000 buy-back when consigned to the 2009 Keeneland September yearling auction by Denali Stud, agent.
Six horses were the quickest at an eighth of a mile, each posting a clocking of :10. They included a Speightstown – Evangelizer filly, consigned by Wavertree Stables, agent; a Bernstein – Spies in My Midst colt, consigned by McKathan Bros., agent; and a Forest Wildcat – Orate filly, consigned by Hartley/De Renzo Thoroughbreds, agent. The others were a Johannesburg – Spain filly, consigned by Woods as agent; an Indian Charlie – The Church Lady colt, consigned by Wavertree as agent; and a First Samurai – Beebe Lake filly, consigned by Niall Brennan Stables, agent.
The average wind speed during the under tack show was 17 miles per hour, according to Keeneland.
“It’s gorgeous, and the forecast for the weekend is nice, which is wonderful,” said consignor Niall Brennan. “It makes people feel better about being outside. Sometimes people come out who might not have a focus on the sale, but they’re out here because it’s a nice day. And you know what, a horse impresses them, they’ll start talking about it, and they might buy end up buying it. It can only help when the weather is good and encourages people to come out.”
The prospective buyers and their representatives on hand included John Moynihan, who is the bloodstock adviser to wine mogul Jess Jackson; New York-based bloodstock agent and former trainer Steve Young; Andrew Cary of Thoroughbred Futures; Kentucky bloodstock agent Peter Bradley; Patrice Miller of EQB; and Seth Semkin, the racing manager for Spendthrift Farm owner B. Wayne Hughes.
Keeneland director of sales Geoffrey Russell was pleased.
“Great weather, well-attended, the times were consistent from the first group to the last group, and the horses performed very well on the track,” Russell said.
The Keeneland juvenile auction is scheduled for April 5 in Lexington beginning at 4 p.m. (EDT).