The Magic of Horse Country and Racing

The Magic of Horse Country and Racing

Racing has been exciting in August for Rosecrest Farm….we had two wins in two days!!! You would have thought that would send me running to the keyboard to write, but we’ve had soooo many guests at the B&B and Lil’s has been thankfully busy, so I haven’t had time to sit down and put some thoughts together. So, on August 2, Pistol Packin Rose won at Del Mar and on August 3, Sweet Halory won at Indiana Downs. Rafael Bejarano rode Pistol Packin Rose.  He broke great with her and got her to settle on the backstretch.  Then, coming out of the second turn she took a short lead in midstretch, than had Lady Ninja fight back, but she could not match Pistol Packin Rose and our Rose inched clear at the wire!!!! As you can imagine, Chuck and I were on our feet as we watched her fight for the win and GET IT!!  And, yes, we celebrated as we kept watching the replay.  Click here to enjoy the race!!!CLICK HERE <iframe width=”560″ height=”315″ src=”https://www.youtube.com/embed/Ury2QQAGSIY?rel=0″ frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen></iframe> The next morning I fed breakfast to a full B&B and Chuck got the moms and babies in, fed, and back out in time for us to drive to Indiana to watch Sweet Halory run.  She won and we were there to see it!!! Her jockey, Katie Clawson, rode a great race.  She was content to lay back and let the speed horses fly with the fast times of 21.5 and 44.15 for the quarter and half-mile.  At the quarter pole (with a quarter of a mile to go), Sweet Halory...
Bourbon County Wins Big at Belmont

Bourbon County Wins Big at Belmont

Two horses raised right here in Bourbon County, Kentucky won their very first Grade I stakes in VERY different fashion on Saturday afternoon at Belmont Park in New York City. One was a longshot running in his first G1 race at age 5.  One was a $1.2 million yearling vindicating his big ticket purchase price in the classic Belmont-G1. One was rewarding his breeder’s faith in him, after his breeder bred, foaled, raised him and invested four years of training bills in a gelding who required five starts to break his maiden. One was rewarding his owners’ faith in him, after they banded together to be able to afford him at the uber elite Saratoga Yearling Sale and invested $1.2 million to purchase him, only to watch him run 10th in his career debut a year later at Saratoga. What they share is Bourbon County roots, and the joyful support of hundreds of Bourbon Countians who labor in various aspects of the Thoroughbred horse business.  They all experience sooooo many ups and downs that they truly exult when a fellow Bourbon Countian gets to enjoy the view from the top of the heap. The big ticket 3-year-old winner of the $1.5 million Belmont Stakes is TAPWRIT, the third son of Tapit to win the Belmont in the last four years.  He was raised at Craig and Holly Bandoroff’s Denali Stud under the care of the excellent team led by Gary L. Bush.  Denali also had the responsibility and accomplishment of sending him through the Saratoga Yearling Auction.  Selling a big ticket yearling is not like selling an expensive piece of jewelry.  These young...
Willie:  New Kid on the Block

Willie: New Kid on the Block

I hear lots of people say that a horse doesn’t know what they sold for. Well, I might have to disagree. If a horse goes through the ring and if they are listening to the auctioneer, they hear that final bid amount over and over and over before the gavel hits. But, as I said, the horse must be paying attention – which is not always the case.  Sometimes they are distracted by what’s going on around them, and there is a LOT going on around them.  The auctioneer is doing his rhythmical chant and making a lot of noise, but there are also all those people looking at them, and then you  have the people not bidding, but visiting with each other…as the horse wonders, “Why aren’t they bidding on me?  Don’t they know I’m going to be a winner?  I’m the next Big One!”  But then there’s that strange person standing off to the side, gesturing wildly while telling a story to the small crowd around him and the horse wishes he could hear that tall horse tale. Sorry, I digress.  Let’s get back to the main character of this story….”Willie”. His actual moniker until named is “Summer Soiree 16”.  That means he is the 2016 foal out of Grade I stakes winner SUMMER SOIREE (by War Front).  He is sired by WILL TAKE CHARGE, and is from Will Take Charge’s first crop.  So even before this weanling stepped into the sales ring, he had heard all about his pedigree, including that Will Take Charge earned $3,924,648 in 21 starts and was the son of Broodmare of the Year TAKE CHARGE...
October already????

October already????

I can’t believe it’s October in Paris Kentucky.  The babies aren’t babies anymore, they all have been weaned. So no more “foals” at Rosecrest, but we have very active weanlings. They no longer have Mom around to keep them behaving, so they are now bossing each other.  It’s really fun to watch the more dominant personalities take control and the rest play Follow the Leader.  But, then you also have the instigators who decide when it’s time to play and start chasing one another.  If that doesn’t work, he or she will usually bite another on the butt and run while the others give chase.  I do find it interesting how they just naturally run in big circles. The few weanlings being prepped for the Keeneland November sale are learning to get along without their buddies when brought into the barn for the night.  The first week a couple were very vocal about not wanting to be separated.  Like weaning all over again. If you are wondering why they have to come in the barn without their buddies, it’s so we have more time to work with the Sale Weanlings.  All the weanlings are introduced to the trailer, walking on and off so they are easy to load when the time comes.  (Trainer Doug O’Neil, once made an interesting comment that horses that load easily on trailers seem to adapt to the starting gate easier.)  The Sale Weanlings start getting baths and what you might call spa treatments.  They also spend time learning their runway walk: walk, pause, turn and pose and then do it again. It’s all part of growing up, and...
Racing’s Ups and Downs

Racing’s Ups and Downs

Two weeks ago, we watched – with great anticipation – Sweet Halory’s return to the track….almost 8 months since she won her debut at Delmar.  We watched that race on TV and shouted with joy as we watched her win, but then she would miss months because of an injury.  On June 30th Glen (co-owner) sent us a text that read “This Friday, Sweet Halory, 6f with Hall of Fame Jockey Mike Smith ????” Well what do you say to that, except “OMG Mike Smith, Go Sweet Halory”. Our girl ran a great race, closed well and took second to Bendable, a Claiborne homebred — so  Winchester Road produced the exacta in the fourth race at Santa Anita that day.  Yayyyyy!   After the race, Mike Smith’s comments were that he loved her and “two turns and we catch ’em”.  I’m not sure that Mike Smith would remember but he rode Brushed Halory (Sweet Halory’s dam) in her last two career starts.  One was a Grade III stakes race at Gulfstream.  I sure hope he gets to do the same, and more, with Sweet Halory. Sweet Halory’s pasture mate as a youngster was Miss Noble Rose.  You may remember Miss Noble Rose was training great… being sent out to work with Grade I winners and she was always holding her own.  Well, she unfortunately did not bring her ability to the races in the afternoon. I have heard the term “Morning Glories”…they are horses that train great in the mornings and give you all kinds of hope that they are going to be great.  But no, they decide they don’t like running in the...
Living the Life

Living the Life

We’ve had two absolutely crazy weeks leading up to the Derby.  I know I always say that things are crazy, but it’s true!  It is, afterall, Springtime in Kentucky on a Thoroughbred breeding farm! It started when I’llgiveitawhirl delivered her first foal at 10:45 PM on April 24th — a well balanced by colt by Gemologist. Twelve hours later, Charley’s Hope delivered a long-legged filly by Fed Biz. Twelve hours later, Annapolitan delivered a feisty filly by Shanghai Bobby and twelve hours later, Rose dela Troienne gave us a monster colt by Overanalyze. This is all, of course, in addition to our normal farm days of vet checks every morning and shed runs later in the day. The B&B was busy with guests everyday and Lil’s Coffee House was crazy with lots of people in town.  August will be the fifth anniversary of our opening Lil’s….we’re blessed with people (more each year) who make a point of eating with us when they’re in town.  Meanwhile, we catered a few Keeneland tailgate picnics and had the opportunity to cater the desserts for the big St. Mary’s School Gala Fundraiser on Rolex Friday. I’m soooo grateful for my talented staff who worked hard while I took a day off for racing on one of Keeneland’s last days of this meet with old friends, and then again on Saturday and Sunday, I was able to watch Allie Knowles at Rolex. The first special day was Wednesday, when my people allowed me to take the day to join four dear friends from Cincinnati for a precious day of racing at Keeneland — my first...