While watching Rags to Riches and Curlin battle for the lead in Saturday's Belmont Stakes (gr. I), Bill Farish of Lane's End Farm said he felt "a little conflicted." Rags to Riches won the battle, but even if it had gone the other way, it would still have been a great day for Lane's End, which was founded by Farish's father, Will.
The nursery in Versailles, Ky. is the home of both Rags to Riches' sire, A.P. Indy, and Curlin's sire, Smart Strike. In addition, Pleasant Tap, the sire of Belmont third finisher Tiago, stands at Lane's End, and so does Came Home, the sire of fifth finisher C P West.
Lane's End raised and sold Rags to Riches as a yearling for her breeder, the Gumberg family's Skara Glen Stables.
"It was a really, really fun day for the farm," Farish said. "It was neat to have them (the progeny of Lane's End stallions) all doing so well. A.P. Indy and Smart Strike are one-two on the sires' list right now, and one of Curlin's owners, George Bolton, is a good friend of mine, so I was a little conflicted. But I think it was a phenomenal race for anybody who was there, and it was a great day for racing to have a filly win a classic at a mile and a half. The crowd was unbelievably appreciative."
A.P. Indy is an established star at Lane's End, but with Curlin winning the Preakness (gr. I) in addition to finishing second in the Belmont and third in the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I), Smart Strike is rising in prominence.
"Smart Strike has had a phenomenal ride over his career," Farish said. "He seems to get better and better every year. His yearlings sell better every year. It's a fun thing to watch."