07/10/2003 11:00PM

Debut winners bring deserved recognition to Compadre


There is a new sensation in the Ontario stallion ranks these days and his name is Compadre. In a span of one week at the end of June, the 13-year-old sire had two debut-winning 2-year-olds at Woodbine, bringing his total to four in less than a year from just 33 runners.

In addition to those winners, Compadre is the sire of the graded-stakes-placed gelding No Comprende, stakes-placed El Gran Maestro, and allowance runner Kabul.

Recognition has been a long time coming for the Compadre, an attractive bay son of El Gran Senor- Natania, by Naskra. El Gran Senor, a champion in England, is also the sire of champion Lit de Justice, who has a number of offspring racing in Ontario. Natania won 11 races and more than $440,000 while racing from ages 3 to 5.

As a tough-luck racehorse, Compadre was stakes placed eight times in 50 races but was disqualified from two wins, including the American Turf Stakes at Churchill Downs as a 3-year-old.

Raced by Dogwood Farms and trained by Frank Alexander, Compadre won his five-furlong career debut at Saratoga, and was stakes placed as a 2-year-old in the Grade 3 Pilgrim.

Through age 6, Compadre tackled the best turf horses of those years and placed several times in graded races. He put more than $384,000 in the bank, won seven races, and was second or third 26 other times.

Compadre began his stud career in Virginia but got lost in the shuffle among the many stallions there. He sired two small crops and a handful of winners.

Gerry Grguric, whose Wynnwood Farm in Schomberg, Ontario, had been the home of the stallion Tejabo, discovered Compadre through the Internet and made an offer to purchase the horse.

"I just fell in love with him - his race record, his conformation," said Grguric. "He ran against millionaires. He was so versatile, short, long, turf, dirt, it didn't matter. I bought him and No Comprende, who was a yearling at the time."

In partnership with Ron Delmas of Fieldstone Farms, Grguric brought Compadre to Ontario and in his first season at stud, the horse bred more than 50 mares.

His first Canadian crop hit the races last year and this past spring, Compadre bred 78 mares.

Grguric, who is involved in matching Compadre with mares for Delmas, said the stallion's fee will be raised to $5,000 from $3,500 for next year's breeding season.

"He already has 23 mares booked for next year; it's been amazing," Grguric said. "He's had limited opportunities; his mares haven't been the quality yet that I like."

Compadre's two juvenile winners this year, Baghran and Le Grande Mamma, figure to be pointed to the Nandi Stakes for Ontario-sired fillies on July 26.

Summer Mood dead at 22

Kinghaven Farms' Canadian champion Summer Mood, best known as "Charlotte," died on April 17 when she suffered a ruptured uterine artery that also caused the death of a foal by Alydeed. She was 22.

Summer Mood, who won 17 of 50 races for Kinghaven, including seven stakes and more than $542,000, was the champion sprinter of 1985. She was sold by Kinghaven in foal to Alydar for $750,000 in 1988 but returned to Kinghaven in 1998 when the farm purchased her for $32,000. Summer Mood's last foal is a 2-year-old filly by Whiskey Wisdom named Summer Fling. Summer Mood has produced three winning foals from seven starters.