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breeders’ cup The hard-knocking Gun Runner, a son of Candy Ride, saw off the “hounding” by Collected to take the Breeders’ Cup Classic

and Unbridled Elaine. Like Gun Runner, Forever Unbridled has a dam who was an expensive purchase as a broodmare prospect – she is out Lemons Forever, whom her breeder Charles “Chuck” Fipke purchased for $2,500,000 at the 2007 Keeneland November Sales. Lemon’s Forever has bred a previous notable by Unbridled’s Song in the Ballerina Stakes (G1) heroine, Unbridled Forever. On the track Lemon’s Forever, a daughter of Lemon Drop Kid, won only one stakes race, but that victory came in the Kentucky Oaks (G1). Lemon’s Forever’s first two foals, one of whom was a minor winner, were by Fipke’s own stallion Perfect Soul, a son of Sadler’s Wells. Lemon’s Forever is out of Critikola, an Argentine-bred daughter of the Grey Dawn horse, Tough Critic. A winner of three graded stakes and Grade 1-placed in her native country, Critikola also took third in the Santa Margarita Invitational Handicap (G1) and Santa Maria Handicap (G1) in the US. She is also grand-dam of Bajan, a two-time stakes winner who was also third in the Santa Anita Oaks (G1). The third dam Hello Love, a daughter of Forli, is third dam of Mr Carrea, a Grade 1 winner in Brazil, and is also ancestress of Sanderman, Soy Fiestero and Staccato, all champions in Chile.

Midway battles to Dirt Mile victory

The Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile (G1) fell to Battle Of Midway, a three-year-old who started at 14-1 but ran down the speedy older horse Sharp Azteca to score by a half-length. Battle Of Midway, who retires to WinStar Farm, Kentucky for the 2018 season, has won five of ten starts. He had some good form going into the Mile with wins in the Affirmed Stakes (G2) and Shared Belief Stakes, a second in the Santa Anita Derby (G1) and a third in the Kentucky Derby (G1), but had been beaten as a short-priced favourite in the Oklahoma Derby (G2) on his previous start. Battle Of Midway is by the late two-time leading sire Smart Strike (Mr. Prospector), who is best known as sire of twice Horse of the Year Curlin, the champion Turf horse English Channel, Lookin At Lucky, a champion two and three-year-old colt, the champion two-year-old filly My Miss

Aurelia, and a host of Canadian champions. Rigoletta, the dam of Battle Of Midway, won twice at two with one of those victories coming in the Oak Leaf Stakes (G1), while she also took third in the Debutante Stakes (G1) at that age. A daughter of the Chief’s Crown stallion Concerto, Rigoletta comes from a family that has done most of it’s work in Florida in recent generations. Her dam Almost Aprom Queen is a halfsister to stakes winners Sea Of Green and Lady Gin, and to the dam of champion US female sprinter, Musical Romance. The family goes back via Battle Of Midway’s fifth dam the minor stakes winner Cricket Club and sixth dam Clover Lane, who took the Arlington-Washington Lassie Stakes, to the foundation mare Grass Shack. A close relative to twice leading sire Exclusive Native, Grass Shack is ancestress of more than 70 stakes winners, 11 of them Grade 1, including Deputy Minister, Horse of the Year at two in Canada, a champion at that age in the US and later a two-time leading sire, and of Charismatic, successful in the first two legs of the US Triple Crown. Smart Strike was a half-brother to the exceptional race mare Dance Smartly, a daughter of Danzig, and Battle Of Midway represents an extended version of the cross of Smart Strike with Danzig-line mares, which has yielded 19 stakes winners from 155 starters (12 per cent stakes winners to starters), also including Lookin At Lucky. Eclipse award certainty Forever Unbridled

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Profile for Thoroughbred Publishing

ITB_Dec2017  

Stallion Review 2017, including Frankel, Mickley Stud, a wealth of stallion statistics and an interview with Elite Racing Club, owner-breede...

ITB_Dec2017  

Stallion Review 2017, including Frankel, Mickley Stud, a wealth of stallion statistics and an interview with Elite Racing Club, owner-breede...