The 2017 Busanda Stakes at Aqueduct is named for a mare who was born 70 years ago. By Triple Crown winner War Admiral (by Man o’ War) and out of the Blue Larkspur mare Businesslike, Busanda was bred by Ogden Phipps from some of the exceptional stock that he acquired from the estate of E.R. Bradley’s Idle Hour Farm.
The Bradley estate sold the bloodstock in a private transaction to Greentree Stable, King Ranch, and Phipps, and all the parties reaped dividends. None did better than Phipps, however.
Busanda was the fifth foal of her dam Businesslike, who was the seventh foal of the great broodmare La Troienne (Teddy) and was a nonwinner from only two starts on the racetrack. Businesslike was a half-sister to four stakes winners, including champion Bimelech (Black Toney), and a full sister to stakes winner Bee Ann Mac, winner of the Selima at 2 and third in the Alabama Stakes at 3.
So Businesslike would have had considerable appeal as part of the Phipps broodmare band, and Busanda was her first stakes winner. As a racehorse, Busanda was a winner at 2 and 3rd in the Selima. She then progressed notably at 3 to become one of the better fillies of her generation.
The black filly hit the headlines with a victory in the Alabama Stakes at 3, when she was also 3rd in the Coaching Club American Oaks; won the Suburban Handicap and Saratoga Cup against colts at 4, plus the rich New Castle Handicap and Top Flight against mares; and was again victor in the Saratoga Cup as a 5-year-old.
In all, Busanda won 10 of 65 starts, with 18 more finishes in 2nd or 3rd. She was tough and game, had superior stamina, and was beautifully pedigreed. What a broodmare prospect she was.
Possessing more stamina than speed, Busanda was sent first to Native Dancer’s sire Polynesian, and her first foal was stakes winner Bureaucracy, winner of the National Stallion Stakes at 2, the Dwyer at 3, and second in the Travers. The mare’s next four foals were all by Nasrullah, the best stallion in America during his lifetime, and the results were disappointing: a pair of minor stakes-placed colts and a pair of nonwinning fillies. Returned to a more specifically speed influence, Busanda produced 1963 Futurity Stakes winner Bupers (Double Jay) and champion 2-year-old colt Buckpasser (Tom Fool).
Buckpasser progressed like his dam, although starting from a higher perch on the handicap at 2 and becoming Horse of the Year at 3 after scintillating victories in the Travers, Woodward, Jockey Club Gold Cup, and many other races. A winner in 25 of 31 starts, Buckpasser was one of the greatest American racehorses, and Busanda was his dam.
These horses raced for Phipps, and it is fitting that one of the great international owner-breeders, Juddmonte Farms, bred and races the winner of the 2017 Busanda.
This is the dark brown filly Lockdown, a full sister to champion Close Hatches, both by the Unbridled’s Song stallion First Defence. A winner five times at the G1 level, Close Hatches was a big, slashing sort of filly with a big stride and the ability to carry her speed around two turns.
Lockdown, now twice a winner from three starts, looks a lot like her full sister and became a stakes winner in the Busanda. That makes Lockdown the second stakes winner from her dam, the Storm Cat mare Rising Tornado.
Juddmonte’s Garrett O’Rourke said, “Lockdown is very close to her sister. They were like replicas till January of Lockdown’s 2-year-old year, when she seemed to grow taller, more like the Unbridled’s Songs. Close Hatches is thicker, with a touch more of the Storm Cat, but they may be coming back together” in their development now.
Rising Tornado is a winning daughter of the stakes-placed mare Silver Star (Zafonic), a full sister to English highweight 2-year-old colt Xaar. They are out of the outstanding producer Monroe (Sir Ivor), dam of group stakes winners Masterclass (The Minstrel), Diese (Diesis), and Xaar, who won the G1 Dewhurst and Prix de la Salamandre at 2.
Winner of the G3 Ballyogan Stakes and second in the G1 Phoenix Stakes, Monroe is one of four stakes winners out of Best in Show, dam also of G3 winner Malinowski (Sir Ivor) and Kentucky Oaks winner Blush With Pride (Blushing Groom).
Monroe is also the point at which Juddmonte bought into this family. Brought to sale as a yearling, the bay filly was a full to Malinowski, as well as to stakes-placed Minnie Hauk, and Monroe went through the 1978 Keeneland July sale for $300,000, the fourth-highest price for a Sir Ivor that year.
Generation after generation, this outstanding family has given racers of the highest class to Juddmonte’s international racing and breeding operation, and Lockdown is another link in this chain of excellence.