Maimonides and More Happy were already well-known. Maimonides was a bangup maiden winner at Saratoga last summer before running a disappointing third in the Hopeful. His Kentucky Derby campaign is expected to begin with the San Rafael Stakes at Santa Anita on Jan. 12. That's a race that's been a winter launching pad for the likes of Tabasco Cat, A.P. Indy and Ferdinand. More Happy, a Vindication filly who sold at auction for $1 million, was one of trainer Bob Baffert's Del Mar dropouts who won the Adirondack at Saratoga.
These are all offspring from the first crop of Vindication, who stands at Hill 'n' Dale Farms in Lexington, Ky., for an advertised fee of $60,000. Based on early returns, paying $60,000 to send a mare to the son of Seattle Slew may be a steal.
Vindication was voted an Eclipse Award for best juvenile in 2002 after winning all four of his starts, including the Breeders' Cup Juvenile. Baffert was preparing him for the 3-year-old stakes at Santa Anita when an injury ended his career. Satish Sanan bought Vindication as a yearling for $2.15 million, at the urging of his daughter Nadia. They were over budget, but Nadia persuaded her father to keep bidding. Others in the sales ring thought that the Sanans were making an expensive mistake. The colt's name was a retort to those who suggested that the Sanans had spent lavishly on an unsound horse.
Signature Move, who beat two horses trained by Doug O'Neill on Friday, cost $625,000 as a yearling. Like his sire, he could turn out to be a bargain.