A beautiful, powerfully built, and scopey daughter of American Pharoah, a half sister to four-time champion Beholder, lived up to the pre-event hype at the Keeneland September Yearling Sales and was sold to Mandy Pope’s Whisper Hill Farm for $8.2 million.
The offspring of the 2015 Triple Crown champion, in his second season at stud, has been very productive on the racetrack this year, especially on grass, a surface on which the champion never raced.
What was remarkable, aside from the astounding amount paid for a yearling female, the filly is out of the 23-year-old broodmare, Leslie’s Lady. This is the mare’s 14th foal.
Among that offspring is Grade 1 winner and G1 winning sire, Into Mischief, the hottest property in the U.S. this year; the aforementioned Beholder, and major stakes winner, Mendelsson.
The filly was bred in Kentucky by Clarkland Farm.
For that kind of money go straight to the breeder’s shed. Remember Wajima? Short race career because so valuable (I think I’ve got that right, Alice). Breaking news from CA: Justify debacle another black eye for our west coast cousins. May I direct you to a new article from Louisville Courier Journal on this matter. Says that this horror show makes Maximum Security’s disqualification look as innocent as a split infinitive. A side of me wants MAX put up as “official.” I also, but could be wrong here, think that because of the trainer and owner connections to Justify maybe the rules were not upheld. Sort of like Cordero smacking Genuine Risk in Preakness. If it had been a lesser known and famous rider, who knows? I watched the replay. Genuine Risk stopped for no reason other than cowboy-style race riding. She was robbed!
Even the late, great Joe Hirsch uncharacteristically wrote a DRF editorial lambasting Cordero for the Genuine Risk incident.
For that kind of money and with her pedigree, she probably could go right to the breeding shed. But owner Mandy Pope of Whisper Hill Farm has enjoyed much success as a breeder, now she wants the joy of victory and agony of defeat shared by owners.
She wants to compete at the highest levels with her own horses, good for her. She’s earned that right…
Meanwhile, she looked like a beast in the ring, wow, and poised as well. Will be interesting to follow her. Her debut will not go unnoticed.