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Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Pinhooking Update

- Exciting week for my pinhooking partnership. The Tactical Cat colt that did not meet our reserve at the 2 yo in training sale at Ocala last month is en route to Billy Turner’s barn at Belmont to begin training. The Castle Village end of the partnership has also taken full ownership of the colt. So we have a racehorse! (hopefully!) The master plan was to buy one or two with the vast pinhooking profits that have not yet materialized, but nonetheless, I’m in on a horse everyone seems to like that could conceivably debut in Saratoga if all goes well. Next is the democratically chaotic process of all the partners suggesting names for the colt, and trying to come up with something that everyone agrees on. More likely, Steve Zorn, the managing partner, will have to make the call himself. I’m not sure if partnership rules allow us to filibuster a name that we don’t like.

The colt is by Tactical Cat, out of Highland Tide (Highland Blade), so if you have any brilliant suggestions, feel free to pass them along. If it’s something that actually gets accepted, I guess I’ll have to come up with some kind of prize. I have some old NYRA T-shirt giveaways lying around somewhere.

The two remaining horses in the partnership are fillies by Vicar and Real Quiet. They were both entered in next week’s Fasig-Tipton Timonium sale, but a routine pre-sale X-ray on the Real Quiet filly last week revealed a chip in her knee, so she’s out. She’s being shipped to Pennsylvania to have it removed, and then will go into training for us as well, though the objective is still to try and sell her at some point, perhaps after a dazzling maiden victory.

So, a lot is riding on the Vicar filly. After a quick start with the Deputy Minister colt that was sold privately, we’ve been unable to sell any of the other three thus far. But this filly was small and was thus targeted for this sale from the start by consignor Niall Brennan, who has said she could be a standout there. Here’s her catalog page (pdf). She’s out of an unraced Belong to Me (Danzig) mare, who has produced one modest winner from 3 other racing age foals. Her second dam was unplaced in 2 starts, but she has foaled six winners, including millionaire and multiple graded winner Fit For a Queen, who in turn, is the dam of Royal Assault, 3rd in last year’s Belmont for Zito, as well as the dam of stakes winners Ender’s Sister and Ender’s Shadow; the latter nearly won the G2 Mervyn LeRoy on Saturday.

Interestingly, the filly’s 5th dam is Lady Angela, the dam of Nearctic, the sire of Northern Dancer; and she traces back tail-male to Nearctic himself through her grandsire Wild Again (Icecapade / Nearctic). She’s inbred 4x4 to Northern Dancer, but is totally free of Raise a Native, so I imagine she presents some interesting possibilities as a broodmare. But first things first. She’s breezing in the under-tack show tomorrow, and as Steve said, we need her to run “a hole in the wind.” Otherwise, a see a cash call in my not-too-distant future.

- The Head Chef never heard that expression – running a “hole in the wind.” I assured her that it’s not something limited to horse racing. One expression that she has heard however, and has now officially denounced, is “breaking its maiden.” She deems it “sexist,” “inappropriate,” and “crude,” and says we might as well say as that a horse has “popped its cherry.” I have to honestly say that I never once in my life paused to think about where the expression may have come from and what its literal meaning might be. But in keeping with what must be to some the annoying political correctness of this site (and to insure that I continue to eat well), I will no longer use that expression here. I like “popping its cherry” better anyway.


Patrick J Patten said...

Working off the whole Highland thing
claymore cut
cat in the mist
Tartan Flank

Anonymous said...

I like the highland angle too. For instance, if you think he's a winner, there's Bannockburn, or if your expectations are lower, Culloden. Or perhaps the Scots version of Bonnie Prince Charlie, i.e., Tcharlach.