A racing rarity will occur Saturday when half-siblings Micheline and Proxy – whose dam is millionaire Panty Raid, winner of the 2007 Spinster (G1) at Keeneland – start in consecutive graded stakes for owner-breeder Godolphin.
Micheline, a 4-year-old daughter of Bernardini, will be looking for her first Grade 1 victory in the $300,000 Coolmore Jenny Wiley (G1) at 1 1/16 miles on turf. In the day’s previous race, the 3-year-old Tapit colt Proxy will bid for his first stakes win in the $200,000 Stonestreet Lexington (G3) at 1 1/16 miles on dirt.
Both are trained by Mike Stidham.
While they share immense talent, Stidham said the sister and brother have distinctive traits. Most notably, Micheline is claustrophobic in traditional housing, so she resides in a portable stall near Stidham’s barn. At Keeneland, the special setup awaits her Thursday arrival from Florida.
Micheline also showed her talent sooner than Proxy did.
Micheline, who has earned $665,978 with five wins in 13 starts, flashed her brilliance before finishing third in her career debut in August 2019 at Saratoga.
[Related: Micheline takes on Brown pair in Jenny Wiley]
“We took her to Saratoga for her first start, so that shows how much we thought about her,” Stidham said. “We very rarely run horses at Saratoga unless we are very high on them.”
Micheline fulfilled expectations by winning the Sorority at Monmouth Park a month later. She next was unplaced in her lone dirt start in Keeneland’s Darley Alcibiades (G1).
Winner of the Honey Ryder at Gulfstream Park at 3, Micheline closed her sophomore season at Keeneland as runner-up in the Queen Elizabeth Challenge Cup (G1). In her first start of 2021, she won the March 6 Hillsborough (G2) at Tampa Bay Downs.
Stidham said Proxy’s ability was not as evident early as his sister’s was.
“Proxy is one of those horses who did everything right but not anything real flashy,” Stidham said. “He was never a ‘wow’ horse going into his first start.”
Proxy earned his first victory in November at Fair Grounds in his second start and next was second in the Lecomte (G3) and Risen Star (G2) Presented by Lamarque Ford. A winner of two races from six starts – all on dirt – with earnings of $227,700, he comes into the Stonestreet Lexington off a fourth-place effort in the Twinspires.com Louisiana Derby (G2) at Fair Grounds.
“After the Lexington, we will see how he runs and decide where we go from there,” Stidham said.
Stidham also reported that he and Godolphin’s Mystic Guide returned from Dubai in good form despite the long travel and considerable time zone change. Mystic Guide went back to training at Keeneland on Tuesday in his first visit to the track since the Dubai World Cup (G1) win on March 27.
“And I am still floating on a cloud,” Stidham said.