Perryville S. (gr. III)

(gr. III , abt 7f ,)

MIDNIGHT LUTE (DK B/ h, 117 lb) $124,000
Real Quiet —Candytuft , by Dehere
B—Marjac Farms, KY.; O—Watson and Weitman Performances, LLC and Pegram, Michael E.; T—Bob Baffert

Lewis Michael (B h, 117 lb) $40,000
Rahy —Justenuffheart , by Broad Brush
B—Frank C. Calabrese, KY.; O—Frank Carl Calabrese; T—Wayne M. Catalano

Court Folly (B g, 123 lb) $20,000
Royal Academy —Confidentially , by Saratoga Six
B—Carl A. Nafzger, KY.; O—Manfuso, Robert T., et al; T—Ian R. Wilkes

Margins: 4¾, 3, head. Others: High Finance 117($10,000) , Praying for Cash 117($6,000) , Sailors Sunset 117 , Reigning Court 117 , Mach Ride 117 , Latent Heat 117 , Likely 117 , Fabled 117 . Winning Jockey, Victor Espinoza.

The son of Real Quiet debuted last July at Del Mar, where he made his first three starts. He broke his maiden before returning in allowance company a year later following surgery. In his second start, he broke last but moved up at every call through the six furlong race to finish second.

Wheeled back in an allowance race by trainer Bob Baffert, and extended to seven furlongs, the 3-year-old colt won impressively, prompting his connections to ship him to Keeneland for his first stakes try.

In the Perryville, over Keeneland’s new Polytrack surface and at about seven furlongs, Midnight Lute rated behind horses until jockey Victor Espinoza asked him to make a wide rally down the stretch. He hit the front at the eighth pole and spurted away to win by 43/4 lengths.

Midnight Lute is out of the unraced Dehere mare Candytuft, who was bred in Kentucky by Southern Oak Farm. Candytuft was consigned to the 1996 Keeneland November sale by Highclere, agent, and purchased by Nagold Bloodstock for $26,000.

At the following year’s Keeneland January sale, Candytuft was consigned by Cornerstone Stable, agent, and purchased by $30,000 by Joselito L. Millan. At the Keeneland September yearling sale, she was sold by Equus Farm, agent, to Gene Heideman for $65,000. Then at the 1999 November sale, Candytuft, carrying her first foal, by Alydeed, was consigned by Eaton Sales, agent, and purchased by Trackside Farm, agent, for $55,000.

Midnight Lute was bred in Kentucky by Trackside owner Tom Evans in partnership with Macon Wilmil Equines and Marjac Farms. Consigned as agent by Trackside to the 2004 Keeneland September sale, Midnight Lute was bought for $70,000 by Caldera Racing. The colt was consigned by Eddie Woods, agent, to the 2005 Ocala Breeders’ Sales Co.’s March auction and bought back on a bid of $290,000.

Midnight Lute races for the partnership of Watson and Weitman Performances and Mike Pegram.

At last month’s September yearling sale, a half-sister to Midnight Lute was consigned by Evans, Macon Wilmil Equines, and Marjac Farms, with Trackside as agent. The Gilded Time filly was purchased by Off the Hook, agent, for $70,000.

This year, Candytuft produced a colt by Sir Cherokee.

Midnight Lute is one of 10 stakes winners by Real Quiet, who won the 1998 Kentucky Derby (gr. I) and Preakness (gr. I) for Pegram and Baffert and was named champion 3-year-old male. He has also been represented this year by grade I winners Pussycat Doll and Wonder Lady Anne L among his seven added-money winners in 2006. After beginning his stallion career in Kentucky, Real Quiet stood at Regal Heir Farm in Pennsylvania in 2006 for $6,500. He will stand in 2007 at Dr. William Solomon’s Pin Oak Lane Farm near New Freedom, Pa. His fee will be $5,000.—D.M.L.