Champion Bernardini, the highest-priced stallion entering stud this year, covered his first mare Feb. 12 at Sheikh Mohammed's Darley near Lexington. The mare, Lead Story, owned by Stanley Gumberg's Skara Glen Stable and William S. Farish, won three grade II stakes and earned $842,031. Farish stands Bernardini's sire, A.P. Indy, at his Lane's End Farm near Versailles, Ky.
"Bernardini took to the mating naturally," said Darley chief operating officer Dan Pride.
An 8-year-old daughter of Editor's Note, Lead Story scored grade II wins in the Falls City, Churchill Downs Distaff, and Louisville Breeders' Cup Handicaps. She is a half-sister to stakes winner Capejinsky, and her dam, Gwenjinsky (by Seattle Dancer), is a half-sister to grade I winners and millionaires Glitter Woman and Unbridled Elaine.
Lead Story is the dam of a Storm Catyearling colt bred by her present owners.
Bernardini, who is out of the Quiet Americanmare Cara Rafaela, was 2006 champion 3-year-old male for breeder/owner Darley. His fee is $100,000.