Less than a week after the death of his famous sire Pulpit at age 18, the 8-year-old American freshman sire Sightseeing has died, as confirmed by sources in South America, where he was covering in his first shuttle season to Chile.
At the races, Sightseeing (2004 bay by Pulpit x Resort, by Pleasant Colony) showed class as a late-maturing juvenile, then improved at 3. In his first season of racing, Sightseeing was a winner and ran second in the G3 Nashua Stakes, then won the G2 Peter Pan and was second in the G1 Wood Memorial at 3, when he was also third in the Dwyer and Jim Dandy.
Although Sightseeing did not expand on his résumé at 4, he found a space at stud with Nathan Fox’s Richland Hills Farm, where he sired a freshman crop of 51 foals.
At stud, Sightseeing grew into a towering son of his mid-size sire, standing 16.3 hands. Clearly, the stallion had received his fair share of influence from broodmare sire Pleasant Colony, but Sightseeing also possessed balance and quality that made him an altogether appealing prospect as a sire.
From his first crop of racers, which are only 2-year-olds, Sightseeing has sired G1 winner So Many Ways, who is unbeaten this year from three starts, including the Spinaway and Schuylerville Stakes.
Although none of his half-dozen other juvenile winners had shown the class of So Many Ways, they had done enough to push their sire into a position among the better freshmen sires of 2012. Having stood the 2012 bubble-year season at his home base, Richland Hills Farm near Midway, Ky., for a fee of $3,500, Sightseeing was set to return to the States this month and stand next year for a fee of $7,500.
The great hopes held for the young stallion all went awry over the weekend when an attack of colic required surgery, and the young stallion did not survive.
From his Northern Hemisphere season in 2012, Sightseeing covered 48 mares, and this year, he has 28 foals of 2012, according to figures from the Jockey Club.