The Ocala Breeders’ Sales Company is churning through their April sale of juveniles in training, and while I was in Ocala inspecting the young stock for several days, the offspring of a couple of freshmen stallions caught my eye repeatedly.
The first crop by the Storm Cat stallion With Distinction added distinction to their prospects with some of the best works at the sales. Overall, they are a group of sizable horses with good action. They are quite tall, in some cases, and have substance. If they can translate their fluency of action and speed over a furlong or two into similar performances over six to eight furlongs, the stallion will do fine.
One of the most striking by With Distinction was the homebred colt consigned by Derby Dreams as Hip 14. The dark brown, nearly black, colt is tall and handsome. Standing a bit more than 16.2 already, he has good length and scope. A most taking individual, the colt is out of the Dehere mare Lady Samira.
The other first-crop stallion of note was the AP Indy horse Congrats, who stock at earlier juvenile sales had marked him as a sire with promise. In this sale, which tends to pick up a lot of stock that can be more pedestrian, the young athletes by Congrats were quite interesting.
One of the nicer was Hip 987, consigned by Seahorse Stables. The dark bay filly was angular and immature for what she will become in time. Not a “natural” 2-year-old sales horse in the sense that she isn’t heavy and especially precocious, the filly nonetheless had a good BreezeFig of 66 with a stride length of 24.5 feet. Standing a tick over 16 hands, this filly will improve every day, and like most of the Congrats stock, she will surely be better going two turns than around just one.
We will have plenty to observe and evaluate in the coming months as these young racehorses come into maiden competition and give their owners more to cheer about.