With short yearlings a hot commodity at winter mixed sales, it's not surprising that the catalog for the Feb. 6-7 Fasig-Tipton Kentucky auction includes offspring of fashionable sires such as Uncle Mo , Curlin , and Dialed In .
But the stallion with the greatest number of yearlings in the catalog is the more obscure San Pablo , a 9-year-old son of Jump Start represented by seven foals of 2016. The horse, who stands at Phoenix Farm near Paris, Ky. for a $6,500 live foal fee, entered stud in New York in 2014 and his first foals are 2-year-olds of 2017.
Trained by Todd Pletcher, San Pablo was the model of consistency for his owner-breeder Dan Bearden's Burning Sands Stable, finishing in the top three in 16 of 19 starts, with seven stakes victories to his credit, while earning nearly $600,000. At his best while on or just off the lead, the colt won stakes at five different tracks, including the Philip H. Iselin Stakes (G3) at Monmouth Park. As a 3-year-old, San Pablo won a one-mile allowance race at Oaklawn Park in 1:35.05.
"He didn't have 'pull the trigger' kind of speed," said Bearden, who operates a trucking company based in Van Buren, Ark., and Dallas, Tx. "He just ran fast."
According to The Jockey Club Fact Book, San Pablo was bred to 22 mares during his first year at stud, with 17 registered foals of 2015. His 2016 crop consisted of 15 foals, from 21 mares bred.
Bearden said he consigned the large group of yearlings to Fasig-Tipton through Four Star Sales because he wants to introduce San Pablo's offspring to the public and also because he has most of the horse's foals to date, including a dozen 2-year-olds that he plans to put together in a package to syndicate. There are also two mares in foal to San Pablo cataloged at Fasig-Tipton.
The owner said he believes the marketplace will be receptive to the auction yearlings because with such a large group available at one time buyers will be able to see the consistency with which he stamps his foals.
"They all have good conformation and are classy," Bearden said. "They all look like him. They have short cannon bones, are not over at knees, not back at the knees, have a good rump, good head, and nice neck. They're put together like you would put together a Porsche."
Asked if part of his motivation for having seven San Pablo yearlings in the sale was to garner more respect for the stallion, Bearden said, "The respect is going to come when they come out of the starting gate."
Four Star Sales' Kerry Cauthen agrees that buyers should like what they see.
"He wants to get them out in the marketplace," Cauthen said. "The physicals I have seen are worthy of someone taking a shot with."