FEDS: MORE DOPING CHARGES COULD BE IN PIPELINE
by T. D. Thornton
The federal prosecutor leading the case against an alleged network of racehorse dopers underscored several times during a Nov. 17 court hearing that the government might not yet be done bringing new charges that could involve either existing or fresh defendants as it continues to investigate a purported years-long conspiracy to manufacture, mislabel, rebrand, distribute and administer performance-enhancing drugs (PEDs) to Thoroughbreds and Standardbreds across America and in international races.
BETTER THE DEVIL WE KNOW NOW
by Chris McGrath with additional reporting by Bill Finley
He who dares, wins. For commercial breeders, however, that famous military maxim is becoming ever less practicable. Rather than hold their nerve, they rush nervously from one new stallion to the next, few daring to stick around long enough to take a yearling to market once a first crop has actually been exposed to the racetrack.
These cycles often become self-fulfilling, in that few stallions can seize so limited an opportunity in time to maintain adequate momentum. But every now and then, one comes along that, no sooner than he is discarded, promptly rebukes the entire industry for its fickleness. Few have done this quite as dramatically as Daredevil.
In his first three years at stud, the son of More Than Ready covered a total of 376 mares. As his first juveniles approached the track, however, his book plummeted from 140 in 2018 to just 21 last year--a staggering renunciation, even by the flighty standards of today's marketplace. WinStar could hardly be blamed, then, for accepting an offer from the Jockey Club of Turkey last November.
There were, after all, limited signs of precocity in his first 2-year-olds. Of 41 starters, 13 had managed to win. Only one had done so at black-type level, and only Shedaresthedevil had made a graded-stakes impact, when third of six behind a runaway winner in the GII Sorrento S.
The rest is history. This year Shedaresthedevil won the
GI Longines Kentucky Oaks, with another of the exile's daughters, Swiss Skydiver, a clear second. Found for just $35,000 by Kenny McPeek as Hip 2997 at Keeneland September, Swiss Skydiver had already won four graded stakes by that stage, including the GI Alabama S. When she proceeded to beat none other than Authentic (Into Mischief) in the GI Preakness S., it was barely two weeks before Lane's End announced a deal to repatriate Daredevil to the Bluegrass.
To be fair, the way he turned things round with his first sophomores illustrates one of the defining functionalities of all markets. For every loser on a deal, there is a winner. The WinStar team may not have gained full reward for their faith in the huge promise Daredevil had shown in the first two of what proved to be only five career starts, highlighted by a blistering success in the GI Champagne S. In turn, however, Daredevil has given corresponding vindication to the talent scouts of the Turkish Jockey Club.
Because while his sojourn besides the Sea of Marmara proved to be a brief one, Daredevil has returned under an arrangement whereby he remains in Turkish ownership, while managed by his host farm. Bill Farish of Lane's End is not aware of any other Kentucky stud that has worked out a similar deal with foreign interests.
HIDDEN SCROLL TOPS KEENOV TUESDAY
TDN Rising Star' Hidden Scroll (Hard Spun) (Hip 3295) topped Tuesday's session of the Keeneland November Sale, which was highlighted by the horses of racing age section, when selling for $525,000 to Fergus Galvin, who was acting on behalf of Marc Detampel. The 4-year-old colt was consigned by WinStar Racing as agent for owner/breeder Juddmonte Farms.