a.p. indy, alabama stakes, biondetti, bloodstock investment, breeding for classics, chanteclair farm, delta princess, indy five hundred, keeneland november breeding stock sale, keeneland september sale, lyphard's delta, mare haven farm, palides investments, raising thoroughbreds, rick trontz, ron wallace, royal delta, saratoga racecourse, saud bin khaled, selection of thoroughbreds, thoroughbred bloodlines, william o reed
The following post was first published at Paulick Report earlier this week.
When Royal Delta confirmed her class with a five and a half-length victory in the Grade 1 Alabama Stakes at Saratoga on Saturday, the bay filly also staked a claim to being the best racer produced by Palides Investments, the nom de course of the late Saud bin Khaled.
One of two G1 winners from this year’s crop of 3-year-olds bred by Palides (the other is G1 winner Biondetti), Royal Delta has shown her best form in the most public forum some 90 days before the bloodstock and racing stock of Palides will be dispersed completely at the Keeneland November breeding stock sale.
The dispersal will mark the end of a run of success in breeding and racing that has been remarkable for the quality of production that came from the farm.
The international owner began breeding horses in the dire days of the last bloodstock depression and kept his stock at Dr. William O. Reed’s Mare Haven Farm outside Lexington. At that point, he came to know Rick Trontz, who helped him find stallion seasons and shares for the Palides breeding program.
Speaking by phone from the Ocala sale earlier this week, Trontz said, “In those early years, I spoke to the Prince every day. Whether he was in Paris, or New York, or wherever, he wanted to know how the horses were doing and what was happening.”
With that level of interest in the Palides bloodstock, Saud bin Khaled needed a personal representative on the ground in Lexington to oversee his horses, and Trontz suggested Ron Wallace.
Wallace said that “I started my own company in 1994, and that’s when I began working with him. It only took a year or two before we acquired Chanteclair, and it’s been the best farm in the world.”
Indeed, the record that Palides compiled from its farm-bred stock is most enviable. “I’ve been with him for 17 years, and we’ve averaged 20 percent stakes horses for those raised at the farm,” said Wallace. Those statistics are not the result of indifferent interest or management. They result from passionate attention applied over the years.
Saud bin Khaled was that kind of breeder. Wallace said, “He loved talking about his horses or anybody’s horses. He was the perfect owner to have. In his broodmares, Mr. Khaled wanted pedigree and race record, and he did all the matings.”
The mating that produced Royal Delta was one of his best.
“I’ve raised a lot of good horses, but Royal Delta is one of the ones I picked out as a foal who looked like she was going to do it all,” Wallace said. “She was a star from day one. And for her to get this far by winning a Grade 1 at the end of the farm’s career is special.”
And like all the rest of the racing stable and breeding stock, Royal Delta will be in the Keeneland November sale as part of the complete dispersal of Palides Investments.
Royal Delta’s dam, the A.P. Indy mare Delta Princess also will be there, and Delta Princess’s full sister, Indy Five Hundred, will be there. According to Keeneland, Palides will sell 17 mares in foal, as well as five racehorses and a dozen weanlings.
The star of the show will be the Alabama Stakes winner and her immediate family. Both Royal Delta’s dam and her dam’s full sister are stakes winners. Indy Five Hundred is one of a half-dozen G1 winners bred by the farm in the past 15 years.
Delta Princess and Indy Five Hundred are two of the three stakes winners out of the Lyphard mare Lyphard’s Delta, who was a G2 winner in England.
Lyphard’s Delta also produced G1 winner Biondetti (by Bernardini), and she has long been a star of the breeding program for Palides. Wallace said, “He’s got a great group of mares, and it’s going to be hard when I realize I don’t get to see them any more. Lyphard’s Delta did not get in foal this year and probably will be retired from breeding. The mares over 20 (like Lyphard’s Delta, Fitnah, and Mrs. West) will not be sold.”
The yearling half-sister to Royal Delta (by Street Sense) will sell at the Keeneland September yearling sale, and the weanling half-sister (by Smart Strike) will sell in November with the rest of the family. Delta Princess is back in foal to Distorted Humor.