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HRN Original Blog:
Pedigree Power

2013 Kentucky Derby Pedigree Profile: Vyjack

Three minor races for Kentucky Derby aspirants were held in the last two weeks in New York, Florida and California. Only one of the races was graded and none of the victors will receive points in the new Kentucky Derby points system.  The winners and runners up in the Jerome Stakes (G-2), Pasco Stakes and California Derby could become players on the Triple Crown trail in their next contests. This week, we’ll take a closer look at Jerome hero Vyjack.  Dynamic Sky was profiled before his Pasco Stakes victory as a horse to watch and  We'll examine the pedigree of California Derby winner Zeewat later this week.
 
In capturing the Jerome Stakes (G-2), Vyjack became the third stakes winner for his freshman sire Into Mischief. The Rudy Rodriguez trainee battled from start to finish in a game effort, prevailing by a head over second place finisher Siete de Oros despite bumping through the stretch with that rival.  It was three lengths back to Amerigo Vespucci. Piloted by Cornelio Velasquez, Vyjack ran 1 mile 70 yards in 1:40.67 over Aqueduct's inner track. This is the first time the Jerome Stakes has been held at the distance, as  the race was held at a mile previously. The last colt to earn a Jerome Stakes/Kentucky Derby double was Fusaichi Pegasus in 2000.
 
 
VYJACK (Into Mischief - Life Happened, by Stravinsky) was purchased for $100K from the Fasig Tipton Midatlantic two year old in training sales by Pick Six Racing. The bay gelding was a long-shot winner of his 6 ½ furlong debut, defeating his rivals by 1 ½ lengths in November, 2012. A month later, Vyjack splashed his way over a muddy track to a 5 ¾ length victory in the 7 furlong Traskwood Stakes at Aqueduct.  With his victory in the Jerome Stakes, Vyjack catapulted to the top of the top of the list of 2013 Kentucky Derby contenders stabled in New York. He is now undefeated in three starts and has earned $202,200.
 
Sire:
The bay gelding's first crop sire Into Mischief made it to the races in late October of his two year old season. Into Mischief was a lightly raced, but talented colt who won or placed in all six starts. He was victorious from 6 ½ furlongs to 1 1/16 miles. His miler's pedigree kept him off of the Triple Crown trail.  
 
Into Mischief sired 41 foals in his first crop. He finished 2012 as the third leading sire in terms of earnings.  21 of his progeny have raced, eight are winners and three are stakes winners. Two are graded stakes winners. Perhaps one or two of his progeny will place at longer distances, but for the most part, Into Mischief's offspring will be distance challenged and will find 1 1/16 miles at the top of their range.  His sire Harlan's Holiday hasn't produced a stakes winner past 1 1/8 miles. Into Mischief's damsire Tricky Creek sired one stakes winner at 1 1/8 miles and none past that distance.
 
INTO MISCHIEF (Harlan's Holiday - Leslie's Lady, by Tricky Creek)
Into Mischief Vyjack's SireRace Record: 6-3-3-0 ($597,080)
 
Career Highlights:
1st – Cashcall Futurity (G-1) 1 1/16 miles
1st – Damascus Stakes  7F
2nd – Hollywood Prevue Stakes (G-2) 7F
2nd - San Vicente Stakes (G-2) 7F
2nd – Malibu Stakes (G-1) 7F
 
Female Family:
There is stakes quality in Vyjack's female family and his recent ancestors are well known on the Midatlantic race circuit.  He is the third foal produced by the unraced mare Life Happened (Stravinsky - Round It Off, by Apalachee).  His half brother Prime Cut (by Bernstein) owns a 10-2-2-4 ($135,915) race record and placed in the Lexington (G-3),  Peter Pan (G-2) and listed Curlin Stakes.
 
Life Happened is a half sister to 2001 Maryland Champion Sprinter Disco Rico (by Citidancer). The stallion is a multiple Grade 3 winner and currently stands in New York.  Vyjack's second dam Round It Off (Apalachee - Capp It Off, by Double Zeus) was an allowance class mare on the track. She placed in a listed sprint.  Vyjack's third dam Cap It Off (Double Zeus - Turn Capp, by Turn to Reason) was a multiple stakes winner who counts the Maryland Millions Distaff amongst her victories. Other notable stakes winners descended from this female family include Champion Sprinter Smoke Glacken and Grade 2 winners Smokey Glacken and Crown of Thorns.
 
Vyjack pedigree chart
 
 
Damsire:
Vyjack's damsire Stravinsky was a multiple Group 1 sprinter in England and earned the title of English/Irish Champion Sprinter in 1999. At stud, he continued the line of Nijinsky and Northern Dancer, getting 71 stakes winners throughout the world. As a broodmare sire, Stravinsky is represented by 11 stakes winners, including the English millionaire Rip Van Winkle (by Galileo) and two Australian stars, three-time Group 1 winning filly Mosheen (by Fastnet Rock) and South Australian Derby winner Sea Galleon (by Galileo).  All three comprise of Stravinsky's sole winners at 1 ¼ miles or farther and are sired by stallions known for passing stamina attributes to their offspring.
 
STRAVINSKY (Nureyev - Fire the Groom, by Blushing Groom (FR))
Stravinsky Vyjack's DamsireRace Record: 8-3-1-1 ($361,450)
 
Career Highlights:
1st – Nunthrope Stakes (Gr.1) 5F
1st -  July Cup (Gr.1) 6F
2nd – Prix de Salamandre (Gr. 1) 7F
3rd -  Dewhurst Stakes (Gr. 1) 7F
 
Vyjack's second damsire, the impeccably bred Apalachee (Round Table – Moccasin, by  Nantallah) was Champion Juvenile Colt in England and Ireland in 1973.  The daughters of Apalachee bore mainly sprinter/milers.
 
 
Summary:
Vyjack 2013 Kentucky Derby ContenderVyjack has a smooth gait with excellent extension and no paddling or excessive knee action. The gelding appears to have a typical miler's build, with a leaner appearance than a sprinter, yet a less slanted shoulder and longer back than a classic distance horse.  Vyjack's pedigree indicates that he will be best up to 1 1/6 miles, and may place against stakes company at 1 1/8 miles. He will likely be distance challenged going farther. According to his connections, the undefeated Vyjack will likely rest up and compete in the Gotham Stakes (G-3) on March 2.
 

 

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Older Comments about 2013 Kentucky Derby Pedigree Profile: Vyjack...

A synonym for stamina is Irishbred
quote: Are there any horses these days that are bred for distance? yes they run on grass around the world in every venue EXCEPT North America.
Are there any horses these days that are bred for distance? Seems like every profile the horse is distance challenged.
With Stravinsky and Apalachee close up on the bottom, I think you've analyzed Vyjack well Laurie.
I don't really like his ped, but all in all a good horse. Will be a threat up the the derby trail, but not much farther.
Vyjack--very talented gelding who has been challenging to train, but he is winning nicely while learning how to race.
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Meet Laurie Ross
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I've been around horses for most of my life, working in racing stables as a hot walker and exercise rider in my teenage years, and later as a volunteer with rescued and retired racehorses. I became interested in pedigree when the sons and daughters of my favorite horses started their racing careers.   

 

For more than a decade, I've passionately studied pedigree, how it applies to handicapping and breeding theories. In 2010, I joined Horse Racing Nation as their Pedigree Analyst, focusing on juvenile stakes winners, Triple Crown contenders and first crop sires from a handicapping perspective.   

 

In 2011, I accepted the role of South Florida Coordinator and Advisory Board Member for the national non-profit Thoroughbred Racing Fan Association (ThoroFan). Working closely with Gulfstream Park management and other race fans, we created a ThoroFan Chapter at Gulfstream Race Track. Our main project is assisting Thoroughbred rescue and re-training groups.

 

I continue to maintain my website Iron Maidens Thoroughbreds and blog of the same name. As a pedigree consultant, I specialize in assisting small to mid-size breeding/training operations with broodmare breeding reports, sales catalog analysis and recommendations on claims and private sales. 10 - 20% of all proceeds are donated to Thoroughbred rescue and retraining groups.
 
I welcome your questions regarding pedigree, handicapping and breeding. If you would like me to cover a specific topic please contact me at lross@horseracingnation.com.