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Kentucky Derby 2014 - Ring Weekend Pedigree Profile

Ring Weekend Tampa Bay Derby 615 X 400
Photo: SV Photography
The Tampa Bay merry-go-round was held on Saturday. The track’s many—time leading rider Daniel Centeno committed theft when he sent Ring Weekend to the lead in the beginning stages of the Tampa Bay Derby. Dismissed at 14-1 odds by bettors and evidently, his competition, the Graham Motion trainee never received a challenge in the Grade 2 race. The son of Tapit opened up a five length lead at one point while setting moderate fractions. He galloped under the wire three lengths in front of Vinceremos.  That one raced in contention the whole way and overtook stable mate Surfing USA by ¾ of a length under the wire. Surfing USA raced second the entire way before being passed and wound up third. 
Ring Weekend traveled the 1 1/16 miles in 1:43.71.  The final time was comparable to last year’s winner Verrazano (1:43.96) and 2012’s victor Prospective (1:43.35). The son of Tapit has a 6-2-1-2 ($255,660) record and earned 50 points in the Kentucky Derby points system.
RING WEEKEND (Tapit - Free the Magic, by Cryptoclearance) was a 2012 Keeneland September Sales Yearling purchased by West Point Thoroughbreds & St. Elias Stable. The chestnut gelding placed in four of his first five starts before finally breaking his maiden in his last start before the Tampa Bay Derby.
Ring Weekend is by the pretty gray stallion Tapit, who won the 1 1/8 mile Wood Memorial impressively, but suffered a career-ending injury before the Kentucky Derby.
TapitAt stud, Tapit has proven his versatility, getting winners over all surfaces. The majority of his offspring are best up to 1 1/8 miles, although he has sired three winners at 1 ¼ miles; Alabama Stakes (G-1) heroine Careless Jewel, Hawthorne Gold Cup (G-2) victor Headache, and Testa Matta, winner of the Japan Dirt Derby (Gr. 1).  He is also the sire of 2011 Champion Juvenile, Hansen. From seven crops of racing age, Tapit has sired four champions, 28 graded stakes winners and 47 stakes winners. The pretty gray is the late Pulpit’s most successful son at stud. He has been among the top five leading sires in the last four years.
Female Family:
Ring Weekend’s dam Free the Magic was more precocious than her son, winning her maiden in her first attempt.  Racing on the Florida circuit, Free the Magic was an allowance class runner and placed in three stakes. The versatile mare won from five furlongs on dirt to 1 1/16 miles over the lawn. During a racing career that spanned just two years, Free the Magic compiled a 15-4-2-4 ($78,789) race record.
Free the Magic is a very competent broodmare.  Ring Weekend has one full sibling and four half siblings of racing age. All have visited the winners’ circle and one, Bamboo (by Meniffee) is stakes placed. Free the Magic also has an unnamed two year old Corinthian filly.
Ring Weekend has a unique distaff line two generations back. His well-traveled second dam Pompoes was bred in Denmark. She won the Swedish Criterium (Swe-G2) and Danish Criterium (Den –G2). Shipping to France, Pompoes finished second in the Criterium Des Pouliches (FR-G1) and third in the Prix De La Grotte (FR-G3). The mare raced four times in the US and her best placing was third in the Suwannee River Handicap.  
Besides Free the Magic, Pompoes bore her full brother Flash of Joy, winner of the Old Ironsides Stakes at Suffolk Downs. Pompoes also bore Forest Wind (by Green Forest) who won the Mill Reef Stakes (Eng-G2) and placed in stakes in the US.  Her daughter Three Generations (by Alydar) was a multiple stakes winner in France and the US. Pompoes is also the great-grand-dam of two Argentinian graded stakes winners. Pomopes’ full brother Pompus placed in the Dansk Kriterium (Den-G1).
Ring Weekend’s sire and dam are descended from the same Lowes Female Family 3-o, but the lines split in the late 1800’s. When both the sire and dam of a horse trace back to the same foundation mare (in this case Black Corrie), this is called a Formula One breeding pattern. The formula one breeding pattern is found in a small percentage of the Thoroughbred population and horses with this type of breeding can present a better than average performance on the track and in the breeding shed.  The sire Quiet American, plus Group 1 winners Gaviola and Tapitsfly are good examples of formula one breeding. In fact, Tapitsfly (by Tapit) is descended from another branch of the 3-o family.
Ring Weekend pedigree
Cryptoclearance, the damsire of Ring Weekend, competed at the highest level of racing for four years. The FloridaDerby champ finished fourth in the 1987 Kentucky Derby, but followed up with second and third place finishes, respectively, in the Preakness and Belmont Stakes. Cryptoclearance improved with maturity. Racing against legendary heroes Alysheba, Easy Goer and Crème Fraiche, Cryptoclearance was often second, but at the age of five, he won two Grade 1 events, the 1 1/8 mile Donn Handicap and 1 ¼ mile Widener Handicap. 

As a broodmare sire, the long-winded router is represented by 42 stakes winners. While the majority are best up to 1 1/8 miles, five are stakes winners at 1 ¼ miles. The Brazilian-bred colt Quadriballl has similar breeding to Ring Weekend, as he is by a son of A.P. Indy out of a Cryptoclearance mare. Ring Weekend is by a grand-son of A.P. Indy.  Quadriballl is a stakes winner at 1 ¼ miles.
Ring Weekend’s second damsire, the French-bred Belmont, won the Group 3 Prix Eclipse. He was sent to the USA, but failed to win in four starts, so he was sent back to France and then stood at stud in Denmark.
The bloodline cross of Tapit has sired six foals, five starters, four winners and one stakes winner from Tapit mares. Neither his sire Pulpit nor his second sire A.P. Indy were bred to Cryptoclearance mares. 
Ring weekend conformationRing Weekend is a beautifully balanced chestnut gelding. He has a long neck that ties into a well-angled shoulder. His withers aren’t overly pronounced and his short back leads to huge, powerful hindquarters. Ring Weekend’s legs appear well-conformed.  The colt has a smooth stride with an excellent leg extension. He runs straight without excessive movement or paddling.  Pedigree wise, Ring Weekend’s sire and damsire have previously produced winners at classic distances and this colt has the conformation to substantiate his breeding. 
We always see late-developing colts spring up on the Kentucky Derby trail in March and April. Ring Weekend fits this pattern with a slight twist.  The colt made his debut at Saratoga last August and started four times until winning his maiden in February. He’s won on the lead and from off of the pace. A veteran of six starts, Ring Weekend has the experience to become a serious threat as distances stretch out and he appears to be improving at the right time.  An argument can be made in the “who did he beat” category, since the Tampa Bay Derby isn’t known for attracting marquee names.  That debate can be true of most of the preps this year and we won’t have the answer until they pass the finish line in the Kentucky Derby.  Until he proves otherwise, Ring Weekend is a colt to keep on your Derby watch list.


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Older Comments about Kentucky Derby 2014 - Ring Weekend Pedigree Profile...

I'm going to my first Kentucky Derby to see Ring Weekend run!
He's got the best 10f pedigree of any horse with 20+ points right now.
We should have been told his performance improved after Gelding.
his half bother tapiture looks good as well with 22 pts
I agree. he has the best pedigree among the horses that are already in
Animal Kingdom had many naysayers and G. Motion kept him close to the vest as well.
I doubt he'll have as easy a time on the front end in the KY Derby as he did in the TB Derby, but he's got the best pedigree of any of the other speed horses thus far.
pedigree, old news. It is what the INDIVIDUAL does and not some theoretical mating that happened three years ago.
did not figure but that is how it goes with the maturing three year old
A stout pedigree usually wins the KD. Surely, exceptions do take place. Smarty, Giacomo, and Funny all were distance challenged. In the case of Smarty his main challenger Lion Heart also was distance challenged. Talent will sometimes overcome distance limitations. Having said that I still think eliminating challenged horses is a key to a big score. Cal Chrome to me is distance challenged. Ring Weekend on the other hand may be a late developing dynamo.

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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

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