2016 Kentucky Derby - Brody's Cause Pedigree Profile

January 01, 2016 11:56am

There’s something exciting about a one run closer. When they’re on their toes, they provide thrilling stretch drives and photo finishes.  Will they mow down the leaders in time? Brody's Cause, third in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile, is cementing his running style as a come from the clouds sort. Will this 2016 Kentucky Derby contender be a force against speedier foes next year?


Brody’s Cause (Giant's Causeway - Sweet Breanna, by Sahm) made headlines as the one-length winner of the Claiborne Breeders’ Futurity (G1) at Keeneland.  The strong field included the winners of the Saratoga Special, Sanford Stakes, Prairie Meadows Juvenile Mile, plus the runner-up in the Iroquois Stakes. In the Breeders’ Futurity, Brody's Cause passed his rivals as if they were standing still and won the race with plenty in the tank. 


The son of Giant’s Causeway has the pedigree to love the turf, yet didn’t lift a hoof over the surface in his one mile debut.  Switched to dirt for his second start, Brody’s Cause lingered at the back of the pack before unleashing his stretch run, and won the one-mile race by 1 ¼ lengths. After capturing the Breeders’ Futurity, Brody’s Cause faced the California invaders Nyquist and Swipe in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile. After settling into his customary position at the rear of the pack, Brody’s Cause unleashed a five-wide move around the far turn. He steadily gained on the leaders, but had to settle for third place, 2 ¼ lengths behind Swipe.


Brody’s Cause was bred by Gabriel Duignan, William Arvin, Jr. & Petaluma Bloodstock. He sold at the 2014 Keeneland September Yearling Sale for $350,000 to his present owners, Albaugh Family Stable. Conditioned by Dale Romans, Brody’s Cause has accumulated $523,138 and a 4-2-0-1 race record. He has 14 Kentucky Derby qualifying points.



Nicknamed “Iron Horse” for his exploits over the European courses, Giant’s Causeway triumphed in six Group 1 contests. In his only start over dirt, the talented colt finished second by a head to the gallant Tiznow in the 2000 running of the Breeders’ Cup Classic after a long European campaign. That same year, Giant’s Causeway earned European Horse of the Year honors.


Giant's Causeway Brody's Cause sireGiant’s Causeway (Storm Cat - Mariah's Storm, by Rahy) has been amongst the leading stallions both domestic and internationally, since going to stud in 2001. He led the U.S. sires list in 2009, 2010 and 2012 and was the leading two year old sire in 2014.  His offspring quickly dominated at longer distances, so much so, that in 2010, Giant’s Causeway was recognized as a Classic chef-de-race, which acknowledges that he passes stamina attributes to his offspring.  Although 60% of his stakes winners do their best work over the lawn, Giant’s Causeway has sired twelve dirt stakes winners at 1 ¼ miles or farther, including Suburban Handicap (G-1) hero Frost Giant, Fairbanks, winner of the Hawthorne Gold Cup, and Delaware Handicap heroine Swift Temper. 


Surprisingly, Giant’s Causeway’s progeny and that of his daughters have not had success in the Triple Crown races either as winners or as runner’s up. His son Creative Cause finished third in the 2012 Preakness and is the only horse to hit the board in all three Triple Crown races.  


Female Family

Brody’s Cause carries plenty of quality in his distaff line and has a connection to a Triple Crown winner.


Sweet Breanna (Sahm - Sweet Roberta, by Roberto) was not a precocious type. After five attempts, she visited the winner’s circle.  The mare won only three times, but she regularly hit the board in allowance and minor stakes races. She was second best behind Canadian Champion Filly Kimchi in the Woodbine Oaks at 1 1/8 miles and Bison City Stakes at 1 1/16 miles, both races over Polytrack. The hardy dark bay faced the starter 18 times and compiled a 3-7-2 ($353,362) record over the dirt and Polytrack at a mile or farther.


Sweet Breanna bore four half siblings to Brody’s Cause.  Only one, the stakes placed Midnight Sweetie (Midnight Lute) has made it to the track. Brody’s Cause has a soon to be two year old half sister Bold Breanna (Arch) and a soon to be yearling unnamed half brother by Uncle Mo.


Sweet Breanna is her dam’s highest earner. Her half sister Jah (Relaunch) won a 1 1/8 mile stakes over the lawn. Her half brother Elshabiba is stakes placed in England. Her four half sisters have all produced blacktype earners. The most accomplished of her daughter’s offspring is Went the Day Well (Proud Citizen) winner of the Spiral Stakes and fourth in the 2012 Kentucky Derby.


Brody’s Cause’s second dam Sweet Roberta was fairly precocious. She won the Selima Stakes at two and finished second in the 1989 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies behind Go For Wand. Sweet Roberta (Roberto) was the most accomplished runner in her immediate family.


Brody’s Cause’s fourth dam Quick Cure (Dr. Fager) is best noted as the dam of Cure the Blues (Stop the Music), winner of the Laurel Futurity (then a G1), and runner up in the Gotham and Wood Memorial. Quick Cure is also the third dam of the long winded router Antigun (Istan), who finished third in the Belmont Stakes and Breeders’ Cup Marathon.


Brody’s Cause claims a connection to the superhorse Secretariat through their distaff lines. Both are descended from Lowes Family 2-s and trace back to the blue hen Imperatrice. Brody’s Cause’s fifth dam Speedwell (Bold Ruler) is a half sister to Secretariat’s dam Somethingroyal (Princequillo). Both Speedwell and Somethingroyal are found in the fifth generation of Brody’s Cause’s pedigree.

Brody's Cause pedigree



Sahm brodys cause damsireSahm (Mr. Prospector - Salsabil (IRE), by Sadler's Wells) carried great expectations when he was foaled.  He was a son of the mighty Mr. Prospector out of Salsabil, a multiple Group 1 heroine who was the first mare in 90 years to capture the Irish Derby (Ire Gr.1).  Sahm began his racing career in Ireland, but didn’t quite live up to his lofty pedigree. Sent to the U.S. by Darley Stable, Sahm proved to be an adaptable allowance class runner, sprinting over the dirt and capable in turf routes.  Sahm’s only blacktype was earned at the end of his racing career. He finished second by a head in the Kelso Handicap (G2) and then earned a nose victory in the Knickerbocker Handicap (G2), both starts over the lawn.


Sahm stood at stud for only nine years before dying of intestinal disease at the age of 13. Among his 15 stakes winning progeny are Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Filly heroine Maram and the Irish Group 2 winner Mustameet.


Sahm’s daughters bore 89 starters and 53 winners, three of whom are stakes winners. Giant’s Causeway has one other runner out of a Sahm mare, Alcazar De Maram, who is currently 0-3.


Brody’s Cause carries a 4 x 3 breeding to the Classic chef-de-race Roberto. The stallion is Giant’s Causeway’s third damsire and he is also the second damsire of Brody’s Cause.  The bloodline cross of Roberto shows up in over 80 stakes winners, 13 of them Grade/Group 1 winners.



Brody's Cause ConformationBrody's Cause is built to run classic distances. He has a handsome, strong profile with a clean, open throatlatch (so he can get plenty of air).  His neck appears is a bit long, but ties into a beautifully sloping shoulder balanced by a long, strong hip. His cannons are short, but he appears to be a tad long in the pasterns. Brody's Cause is a leggy colt. He carries good muscle, but is not overly bulky. He’ll likely fill out as a three year old.   Brody's Cause has a long, ground-eating stride. He stretches out nicely without wasted motion.


In a modern world where speed rules, it’s refreshing to see such a stamina oriented pedigree. However, Brody's Cause’s winning times in his maiden and the Breeders’ Futurity were tepid, which makes me wonder if he’s just a one-speed grinder who picks off tired horses.  The one run closers do very well in the second and third spots in the Kentucky Derby. In the last 15 years, only four winners of the Derby raced in the back third of the pack and three of them won over a sloppy track.


Brody’s Cause has the pedigree, conformation and class to be a factor in the Derby prep races and in the Triple Crown. Since his trainer Dale Romans is situated in the mid-west, we may see the bay colt contest prep races at either the Fair Grounds or Oaklawn and at Keeneland. Here’s hoping that Brody’s Cause can catch his speedy rivals through his three year old season.  


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