What do Game on Dude, Awesome Gem, and Richard’s Kid all
have in common? Well, to start
they are all G1 winners. They all
have grit, stamina, tenacity, and the will to win. They have all demonstrated a level of toughness that has
allowed them to excel at the top level of competition for many years. However,
in this case, it’s about what one has that the others don’t…
When I read the news this weekend about Richard’s Kid being
sold from Sheikh Rashid al Maktoum's Zabeel Racing International I was
perplexed. I asked myself, “This
guy has been around for ages, why on earth would anyone want to buy him
now?” Judging by my last place
standing in the Horse Racing Nation fantasycapping.com
league maybe I should not trust the “cognitive reasoning skills” that I like to
think make me an above average horse-player. But in this case, I really believe I answered my riddle in
the words of my own question.
What about Richard’s Kid doesn’t interest horsemen? He’s a multiple grade 1 winner at
classic distances, just set a track record at 12 furlongs, and the most
important thing…. he’s not gelded.
In an age when so many racing fans are questioning the seeming
fragility of the American Thoroughbred, we still have reason for hope. Sure, Richard’s Kid didn’t win the
Kentucky Derby, the Preakness, or the Belmont Stakes, but is that all we could possibly
look for in a future stallion? In
his 35 starts, he has multiple wins at the classic distances, succeeded at the
top level of national (and international) competition, set a track record, and
at the ripe young age of 7, is still kicking strong without ever suffering a
significant injury. To me, this is
more important than blasting 6 furlongs in 1:09 as a 2 year old.
If you look at the pedigree of Richard’s Kid, there is a
lot to be excited about. His sire certainly
passed on his robustness and stamina traits. Racing 24 times, Lemon Drop Kid won the Belmont Stakes,
Whitney Handicap, Travers Stakes, Suburban Handicap, and the Brooklyn Handicap.
So far he has not proven a fluke
in the breeding shed either, producing an astounding 12% stakes winners in
nearly 10 years at stud. As a
broodmare sire, Lemon Drop Kid is represented by 74 dams producing 117 foals,
39 of which are winners (33%). Not
Richard’s Kid’s broodmare sire, Broad Brush, is the 197th
crowned chef-de-race. Winning 14
races in 27 starts, he demonstrated durability, class, and above all,
success. The most interesting
thing about Broad Brush, is that his pedigree lacks any presence of Northern
Dancer, Raise a Native, or Bold Ruler.
There are few others that have this trait and it is
proving be a desired dilution to the "big three" that are so heavily inbred in US bloodstock.
Connecting the dots of his proven success on the track
with the potency of the male influences in his pedigree, it is surprising to me that Richard’s Kid was not more publicly
acclaimed as potential future stallion.
Also not to be forgotten is his success on synthetic surfaces, which
give him the potential to sire horses that will like dirt or turf. I hope he is not rushed off the breeding
shed at the end of this year, but if that’s the case, let’s enjoy a true
warrior as he goes for his 3rd Pacific Classic win!! I am just as excited (and I hope many
others will be) to see if he is capable in his second career as he have been on
the track. I would like to wish
the best of luck to the future of this seasoned veteran.