New War of Will filly; Runhappy, Mastery, Flatter, War Front Race Reports and More!
PARIS, Ky.—Claiborne Farm was named the KTDF Breeder for the 2021 Turfway Park Holiday Meet! Turfway’s Holiday Meet covers a five-week stretch every Thursday-Sunday through Dec. 31. The KTDF program offers bonus purse money for Kentucky-breds in stakes, allowance, and maiden races in the state. The money is generated through an excise tax on pari-mutuel wagering.
F O A L I N G R E P O R T
Foaling Season is here! As of February 16, Claiborne has a total of 36 foals: 14 colts and 22 fillies. There are still 16 more mares scheduled to foal before the end of this month! For more foal photos of click here.
War Of Will, a dual surface Grade 1 winner and American Classic champion sees his first foals arrive this foaling season. The son of Claiborne’s emerging sire of sire War Front, carries on the illustrious Danzig legacy at Claiborne Farm. We are receiving a lot positive early reports on the War Of Will foals! The common comment is they look like War Front’s but with more leg.
Pictured below is the 2022 Claiborne/Dilschneider owned filly by 2019 Preakness winner War of Will out of Plea. She was Claiborne’s first foal born on the farm to kick off the 2022 foaling season!
R A C I N G R E P O R T
Runhappy’s Progeny Impress
Wildcat Run showed shades of his sire’s debut win on Saturday night when the Runhappy son won at Turfway Park on debut impressively in a Maiden Special Weight– the same place Runhappy broke his maiden impressively eight years ago.
Racing over the same 6 ½ furlongs as his sire, Wildcat Run shared the same fifth place position after the first call as Runhappy but the pair varied from there. The 3-year-old stayed in that position until they hit the turn then Wildcat Cat started to flash his talent when circling the field a few paths outside the leaders.
Though he was green in the stretch and refused to change leads, that didn’t keep the colt from putting in an eye-catching performance with a four-length victory.
Trained by William Coans for Michael Foster, Wildcat Run was bred by Patterson Bloodstock and Patterson and Company out of Cat Dance.
Cat Dance’s three winners from three named foals include the stakes-placed Be Nimble with Cat Dance also a full sister to Grade 1 winning Forest Secrets, who produced Grade 2-placed Forest Command. Cat Dance is also a half-sister to Grade 3 winner Rumor Has It and stakes-placed Bajan Tryst in addition to the dams of six stakes performers.
Wildcat Run’s third dam is the graded stakes winner and successful broodmare Rokeby Rose, who produced dual champion and five-time Grade 1 winner Silverbulletday.
Cat Dance has a 2-year-old full sister to Wildcat Run who sold to Wildcat Racing at last year’s Keeneland September Yearling Sale as well.
Another of Runhappy’s sons, Rotknee, won his second straight race on Friday when making his return to the races in an Allowance Optional Claiming event at Aqueduct.
The William Butler homebred was hustled out of the gate by Manny Franco to take the lead early on in the six-furlong race and put a few lengths between him and the field. The 3-year-old had 2 ½ lengths in hand going into the stretch and it was only going to get better from there.
Rotknee continued to pull away under urging from his jockey and won by three lengths with the third placed horse 6 ½ lengths behind him.
Trained by Mike Maker, Rotknee is a half-brother to stakes-placed Lookin For Trouble and out of a winning Speightstown half-sister to multiple stakes winner A Freud Of Mama. The family also includes Grade 1 winner Haynesfield and Group 2 winner Ambassador among others.
A leading second crop sire last year, Runhappy is again among the leading third crop sires this year.
Claiborne Sales graduate, Fifth Anniversary, drew off by almost 3 lengths to take an allowance optional claiming at Gulfstream Park (5F AW) for trainer Saffie Joseph, Jr. The 3-year-old filly now boasts over $100,000 in earnings from 5 starts. Happy Boy Rocket made a name for himself on Pegasus Day at Gulfstream Park, widening down the stretch to break his maiden going 1 1/16 miles on the dirt. The 3-year-old was purchased by Frank Fletcher Racing for $490,000 at the 2021 OBS April Sale and is trained by Bill Mott.
Mastery’s Hot Streak
It was another new winner for the on-fire Mastery on Saturday when Cover Me Up won a Santa Anita Maiden Special Weight for Sayjay Racing.
Cover Me Up led the way into the first turn of the one-mile dirt race before being joined by Kerouac with the rest of the field nearly five lengths behind down the backstretch. Kerouac started fading into the far turn and a confident Diego Herrera let Cover Me Up take a breather before Kerouac came back at him in the stretch.
The pair battled to the line with Cover Me Up keeping the advantage and again pulling away in the final sixteenth to win by 1 ½ lengths with the top three 15 lengths ahead of the rest of the field.
Cover Me Up was a $250,000 Keeneland September purchase by North London Bloodstock from breeder Candy Meadows and went through the ring again when purchased for $200,000 as a 2-year-old by Brooke Hubbard. The colt is trained by Richard Baltas and gave indications he is maturing nicely after registering bullets in two of his last five works.
Cover Me Up is the first named foal out of the multiple stakes winner and Grade 2-placed Clothes Fall Off. That mare is one of three stakes performers out of her own stakes winning dam.
It has been a successful year for Mastery, who has sired five winners in the last four weeks.
It was a Mastery exacta on Tuesday when Skerrett became his newest winner, followed in by Twodogsfourcats, in a Parx Maiden Special Weight.
Making her second start, Skerrett jumped out of the gate quickly in the 6 1/2-furlong race and was ready for battle from the start. She fought for the lead until the field hit stretch then it was game over. As her former rival tried to keep Twodogsfourcats at bay behind her, Skerrett focused on running away from the field – something she did extremely successfully.
Skerrett was 6 ½ lengths in front at the line with Twodogsfourcats finishing a neck in front of Reid’s Fangirl for second. Only those two were within eight lengths of Skerrett at the line.
Bred by Eico Ventures, Skerrett is trained by Robert E. Reid, Jr. for Cash Is King and LC Racing.
Out of the stakes winning, Grade 2-placed Salary Drive, Skerrett is a half-sister to multiple stakes winner Francatelli and the stakes winning Saranya, who also has a Grade 2 fourth on her record.
Salary Drive herself is one of two stakes winners for Sporty Card, who has seen three of her daughters produce stakes performers.
Mastery’s first crop has hit the ground running early in 2022 with five winners. That is the same amount of 2022 winners as Connect and Practical Joke, with both standing for over twice his stud fee this year.
3-year-old filly, Hazy Command, got up at the wire to break her maiden at Fair Grounds going 6 furlongs on the dirt. Epoch, a 3-year-old colt bred by Stone Farm, added to Mastery’s list of first-crop winners, defeating 6 others in MSW company at Santa Anita (6.5F turf).
Flatter’s Offspring Take The Grade
Flatter’s evergreen son Plainsman recorded his ninth career victory on Saturday in the Razorback Handicap (G3) in his first start since finishing third in the Cigar Mile Handicap (G1) in December.
Plainsman shadowed Thomas Shelby in the 1 1/16-mile race, keeping pressure on the leader throughout the race. Coming within a head of that rival in the far turn, Plainsman continued to push all the way to the line, getting his neck in front with the rest of the field two lengths behind the top pair.
Owned by Shortleaf Stable, the Brad Cox trainee has finished in the top three in each of his last eight starts with stakes wins coming in four of them. In all, the 7-year-old Flatter son has 20 top three finishes in 28 starts for over $1.2 million in earnings.
“I kind of felt like he was going to be on his game,” Cox said. “I don’t know if I was sweating it. He’s a tough horse. I always felt like he’s a horse that runs his best when he turns for home and he’s right there in position. If he can get the lead at some point, he’s a very tenacious, hard-trying horse. I know he’s a hard horse to get by once he gets the lead, so I felt pretty confident that he could maybe hold off the horse on the inside.”
The Joseph Minor-bred Plainsman is a half-brother to Grade 3-placed Liam and two other winners from his dam’s three other runners. That mare is a half-sister to multiple grade three winner Southdale and the dam of two stakes performers.
Plainsman is now the winner of five stakes races with his first coming in the 2018 Discovery Stakes (G3).
t’s gearing up to be another big year for Flatter after his Grade 1-placed daughter Pass The Champagne made her return to the races a winning one at Gulfstream Park on Thursday.
Finishing just a head behind Malathaat in the Ashland Stakes (G1) last April, the filly was last seen in the Kentucky Oaks (G1) before resurfacing nine months later in this spot. Racing over seven furlongs, Pass The Champagne broke a step slowly but was quickly in stride and was put in a position to stalk the leader.
With three furlongs left to go and only two other horses anywhere near her, Pass The Champagne was mounting a challenge and found little resistance to fight against. The filly outclassed everyone in the field, steadily pulling away down the stretch with 2 ¾ lengths in hand at the line.
Trained by George Weaver for R. A. Hill Stable, Black Type Thoroughbreds, Rock Ridge Racing LLC, BlackRidge Stables LLC and James Brown, Pass The Champagne now has 4 top two finishes in five starts for $160,070 in earnings.
The Preston Madden-bred filly is one of three stakes performers out of the stakes winning Champagne Taste alongside Blame’s Grade 3 winner Miss Kentucky and Pulpit’s stakes-placed Los Borrachos.
Pass The Champagne has a 2-year-old full sister named Time For Champagne and a yearling filly from the first crop of Catholic Boy.
Sound Money, a 4-year-old colt trained by Chad Brown on behalf of Klaravich Stables, won a salty allowance at Aqueduct (7F dirt), drawing clear by more than 5 lengths on his way to a career-high 117 Equibase Speed Figure. Claiborne/Dilschneider homebred, Peaceful Surprise, broke her maiden on debut at Tampa Bay Downs going 1 mile and 40 yards on the dirt. The 3-year-old filly is trained by Christophe Clement for Manzanita Stables.
Napoleonic War broke his maiden on debut at Tampa Bay Downs going 1 mile on the turf. The Chad Brown trainee was born and raised at Claiborne for owner Peter Brant.
Royal Spirit broke his maiden at Gulfstream Park for trainer Todd Pletcher and owners Repole Stable and St. Elias Stable. The 3-year-old colt by Into Mischief out of Don’tforgetaboutme was bred, raised, and sold by Claiborne. Another Claiborne sales grad, Urban, broke her maiden impressively at Santa Anita (6.5F turf). The 3-year-old filly by Quality Road earned a 106 Equibase Speed Figure in the effort for owners Gainesway Stable, LNJ Foxwoods, and NK Racing.
About Claiborne Farm
For over a century, the masters of Claiborne Farm have faced many changes in the industry but have succeeded while adhering to the best principles of stewardship of the land, the horses, and the sport of Thoroughbred racing. In 2015, Seth “Walker” Hancock, Jr. is the fourth in a line of Hancock men who have guided and nurtured a major agricultural pursuit with steadfast integrity and dedication for what is good for the horse.
Known as the Birthplace of Champions, Claiborne Farm is responsible for an unprecedented number of accomplishments. From breed-shaping stallions to Kentucky Derby winners who took their first steps on our soil, quality and consistency is a tradition we have held for over 100 years. The numbers speak for themselves.
Over the decades there have been many outstanding Thoroughbreds associated with Claiborne. From horses who were foaled and raised on Claiborne soil, to racetrack legends, to stallions who called Claiborne home as they made their everlasting impact on the breed.
Doing the usual, unusually well.” – Arthur B. “Bull” Hancock Jr.
Claiborne Farm News