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Comings and Goings

The Breeders’ Cup may be over (and, sadly, a chapter closed when Pine Island was buried at Claiborne) but auction and retirement season is in full swing. Just about 48 hours after competing in the Distaff, Sharp Lisa went through the ring, bringing a price of $3.4 million. Apparently she’s set for a visit with George Washington. Summerly also brought a high price ($3.3 million) and will be taking a little trip to see Distorted Humor.

Half Ours was sold for $6.1 million but at least he’ll remain in training, unlike some horses (more on that below). I do wonder, though, if he also has the ‘bad feet’ that Unbridled Song’s offspring are always said to have. I’d like to see some actual statistics on it. Madcap Escapade and her dam, Sassy Pants, both brought high prices as well.

As expected, Bernardini and Henny Hughes are heading off to stud. Sayeth the Darley rep:

“These are the supreme Thoroughbreds of their generation and each bested older horses, too,” said Darley’s Dan Pride. “They are well-bred and exceptionally attractive. They were not only brilliant, but they came back for more time and again. We couldn’t be more thrilled than to have the chance to stand them.”

I would take exception to the ‘coming back again and again’ notion — that would involve lifetime starts at least in the double digits for me. Ouija Board (“coolness personified” which is something I can agree with), with 21 lifetime starts, came back again and again. Bernardini didn’t even come back when a horse started to pass him. So much for longevity. At least Invasor is staying in training…for now. I predict a sudden retirement after the Dubai World Cup. For those who enjoy debating the influence of Dubai on American racing, this is another negative point. Injecting a lot of money into auctions can be great for the local economy and small breeders, but retiring uninjured 3-year-olds to stud (particularly when you don’t need the cash) further hurts racing.

As an aside, let’s look at some of those instances in which the big price tag has not paid off — Jalil cost $9.7 million and didn’t do so well in his first start — and (not to leave Coolmore out of the equation) whither The Green Monkey?

In other retirement news, Film Maker has officially been retired and is booked to Storm Cat. Her 27 lifetime starts and many gutsy finishes also do a lot more for me than Bernardini’s temporary (and, seemingly, accidental) domination over his competition.

How ’bout that Melbourne Cup finish? Sunday Silence continues to power Japanese racing.

Barbaro’s cast is off
and there are a few good articles (here too); there is some video here but I suggest you mute the audio — not only do they not know the word ‘laminitis’ they apparently think that when the next press release comes out (as per usual) on the 14th, we’ll know that he’s going to recover fully. Interesting interpretation. Ignoring the ignorant report, it’s still good news.

Finally, for those of you who worked in Silicon Valley in the 90s and wondered whatever happened to Mahir (which, for some odd reason, I was just the other day), he’s busy trying to sue over Borat. Now that’s seriously funny.

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