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Parading (chestnut horse, 23 March 2003, by Pulpit x On Parade, by Storm Cat)

Claiborne Farm; $3,500

Do pedigrees get any better than this? Well, not often.

Not only is Parading by the most important young sire of stallions in Kentucky (sire also of Tapit, Sky Mesa, and Corinthian), but the handsome chestnut is out of one of the most famous and high-class families in the breed. On Parade, Parading’s dam, is a daughter of Storm Cat out of Breeders’ Cup Juvenile winner My Flag (by Easy Goer out of Personal Ensign).

My Flag is one of three G1 winners out of the unbeaten champion Personal Ensign. The others are Miner’s Mark (Jockey Club Gold Cup) and Traditionally (Oaklawn Handicap), while Our Emblem was G1-placed in the Carter, Metropolitan, and Vosburgh.

The first foal of My Flag, On Parade was a winner and ran third in the G3 Valley Stream Stakes from four starts. Her full sister, Storm Flag Flying, was both more rugged and more talented. Storm Flag Flying won three G1 races at 2, when she was an undefeated champion, then came back at 4 to win again at G1 level and finish second in the BC Distaff.

Parading did not quite manage to win at the family’s exalted level, but the well-balanced horse won the G2 Dixie Handicap on turf and the G3 Ben Ali on synthetic at Keeneland last year to earn a place at stud.

A good-sized horse standing 16.1 1/2 hands, Parading has excellent body length and a very pleasing extension, both at a walk and at a gallop. He has a good length of neck coming back into his shoulder, which is deep and well-angled. The horse has plenty of heart girth and good depth through the body. His mid-portion ties in nicely with a strong hindquarter that should have made him as effective on dirt as on any other surface.

That he was not is a source of some concern but more as a question about physical toughness than athletic ability. A bit offset through the right knee, Parading was handled gently early in his career. He improved with age (presumably because of physical maturity), winning a stakes at Belmont in 2008 before progressing to win his two graded races last year.

With the physique to match a wide variety of mares, Parading offers breeders plenty to dream about at this stud fee.