An impressive milestone could be reached for Frank Stronach’s Adena Springs during this year’s Breeders’ Cup World Championships at Santa Anita Park Oct. 24-25 if one or all three of the contenders he bred turn in winning performances.
Stronach, the founder and chairman of Magna Entertainment Corp., currently ranks second behind the late Allen Paulson on the list of leading Breeders’ Cup breeders by money won. If he bests Paulson’s earnings this year, Stronach will have a lead ranking on both the leading owners and breeders lists.
While Paulson has earned $7,854,800 from his 28 starters over the years, Stronach is close behind with $7,452,400 from just 14 starters, which means he needs to earn only $403,400 to surpass the leader.
The two leading breeders are hardly threatened by the third breeder on the list, Overbrook Farm, which is significantly behind Paulson and Stronach with $4,843,000 from 26 starters.
Five-year-old Ginger Punch won last year’s First Flight Handicap (gr. II), Go For Wand Handicap (gr. I), Ruffian Handicap (gr. I), and Emirates Airline Breeders Cup Distaff (gr. I) en route to being voted champion older female. Ginger Punch’s 5-year-old record has continued to be spectacular, with victories in the Louisville Stakes (gr. II), Ogden Phipps Handicap (gr. I), Go For Wand Handicap (gr. I) again, and the Personal Ensign Stakes (gr. I).
If the daughter of Awesome Again wins the Ladies Classic, she would propel Stronach’s earnings to $8,652,400. If she finishes second, Stronach would still be just a hair behind Paulson with $7,852,400.
But Stronach would still be in luck if one of his other four contenders as breeder ran in the money.
Fatal Bullet, a son of Red Bullet bred in Florida by Adena Springs, is a solid contender in the Sentient Flight Group Breeders' Cup Sprint (gr. I). The 3-year-old gelding set a track record of 1:08 when he won the Kentucky Cup Sprint (gr. III) at the Breeders' Cup Sprint distance of six furlongs. Racing for Beat Stables, Fatal Bullet has won seven of 10 starts, with one sceond.
Stronach’s 4-year-old colt Booyah is entered in the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Marathon, where he may go up against the likes of graded winners Casino Drive, Church Service, Delightful Kiss, Fairbanks, Jonesboro, King of Rome, Sixties Icon, Spring House, and Zappa.
Even though Booyah has less experience with just one ungraded black-type victory under his belt, if the son of Running Stag were to pull off an upset in the race, he would aid Stronach in achieving his goal with a $300,000 winner’s share. Booyah has a record of 4-1-3 from 17 starts and career earnings of $167,060 and could be the extra boost Stronach needs to reach his milestone as leading Breeders’ Cup breeder.
Stronach’s third prospect is Bourbon Bay, who is entered to compete in the Grey Goose Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf. Bourbon Bay broke his maiden on his second try in August and went on to finish second in the Sept. 1 Miller Lite Cradle Stakes at River Downs. Though he is up against five graded winners, including grade II winner Westphalia, it is still a fairly wide-open field as only three of the entries have contested the Santa Anita uphill turf course.
If Bourbon Bay were to cross the wire first in the Juvenile Turf, he would boost Stronach’s breeder earnings to 8,052,400 to beat out Paulson by $197,600.
So watch out for these three horses—they may just help Stronach, a powerhouse in the Thoroughbred industry with five Eclipse awards as breeder—reach a goal he has never before been able to grasp.