09/02/2003 11:00PM

European juveniles worth following


LAS VEGAS - With the Breeders' Cup fast approaching, it is not too early to take a look at the pedigrees of the European juveniles that could make their way to Santa Anita, particularly those by Storm Cat.

Thus far, the juvenile stakes winners in the United States appear to be sprinter-miler types, leaving this year's BC Juvenile wide open unless a late-developing juvenile appears in the near future.

Nice one for Miesque's Son

The most impressive 2-year-old this past weekend was Whipper, who upset a top-class field of juveniles in the Deauville's group 1 Prix Morny at 25-1. Whipper, a $4,000 Keeneland November 2001 weanling purchase, was dismissed because of his conformation and suspect sire, Miesque's Son. He was offered at the 2002 Deauville August yearling sale but did not meet his reserve. A younger full brother to the more accomplished Kingmambo (by Mr. Prospector out of champion and two-time Breeders'Cup Mile winner Miesque), Miesque's Son did not win a race until age 4, when he won the Group 3 Prix de Ris-Oranges. He also finished second in two Group 1 races, the Prix Maurice de Gheest and the Prix de la Foret.

Like Kingmambo, Miesque's Son was not expected to be a force as a stallion until his runners ran on turf. While Kingmambo's offspring were winning throughout the world at 2, Miesque's Son got off to a slow start - death for a stallion based in the United States. Although Miesque's Son sired stakes winners Private Son, Mr. Miesque, and Boggs Eyes from his first crop, and stakes winner Miesque's Approval in his second crop, it wasn't enough to keep him in Kentucky. Miesque's Son currently stands at Lakeview Thoroughbred Farm in Lakeview, Calif., for a modest stud fee of $4,000, a far cry from Kingmambo's $200,000 live foal, fee at Lane's End Farm in Kentucky.

Whipper could ultimately be one of the most successful modern-day purchases. His multiple stakes-winning dam, Myth to Reality, is by Sadler's Wells, and his second dam is a full sister to English classic winner and leading sire of stayers Shirley Heights. Whipper will always be at his best when the ground is soft. Finishing behind Whipper in the Prix Morny was a solid cast of well-bred 2-year-olds, including the fillies Much Faster and Denebola, who are both trained by Pascal Bary.

Much Faster is from the wildly successful first crop of the undefeated Fasliyev (Nureyev), who is on course to sire more juvenile winners than any sire in history. At the end of July, Fasliyev already had sired an astounding 20 juvenile winners.

Denebola, who finished third, a head behind her stablemate Much Faster, has a pedigree known around the world. By Storm Cat, she is out of French juvenile champion Coup de Genie. Coup de Genie is a full sister to 2-year-old champion Machiavellian. Coup de Genie is also a full sister to group winner Ocean of Wisdom, and a half-sister to major group winners Exit to Nowhere and Hydro Calido. Denebola's third dam, Raise the Standard (Hoist the Flag), is a half-sister to Northern Dancer.

Old Deuteronomy is a highly regarded Aidan O'Brien-trained runner who may not have cared for the soft ground. A son of Storm Cat, Old Deuteronomy is from the female family that produced multiple group and Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe winner Rainbow Quest, Scenic, and Epsom Derby winner Commander in Chief. Champion miler Warning and stakes winners Dushyantor and Yashmak all come from this noteworthy family.

Two juveniles with grass pedigrees probably will not come to this country to race on dirt, but they are colts with a big future and could eventually show up here on turf. Balmont and Fokine, the one-two finishers in York's Group 2 Gimcrack Stakes, have all the makings to be Group 1 milers. Balmont is by Stravinsky, who would be the world's leading freshman sire if not for Fasliyev. Balmont's female family produced Cannonade, Tosmah, Halo, and Northern Dancer. Fokine is by the superior turf sire Royal Academy and out of a Thatching mare. He should remain exclusively on grass.

The third-place finisher in the Gimcrack, however, may be headed this way. Grand Reward, a full brother to Group 1 winner Sophisticat, has a pedigree familiar to Americans. He was sired by Storm Cat and is out of the champion Serena's Song, whose career as a broodmare has mirrored her success as a racehorse.

Giant's Causeway sibling to Juvenile

Pearl of Love won The Curragh's EBF Futurity, and he is bred to run all day. By European Horse of the Year Peintre Celebre (Nureyev), Pearl of Love's third dam is Kentucky Oaks winner Native Street, and this prominent female line produced Stravin-sky.

While it is doubtful Pearl of Love would be as effective on dirt, Tumblebrutus, who finished second in the EBF Futurity is definitely heading to the Breeders' Cup Juvenile and will prep in Belmont's Futurity Stakes. By Storm Cat out of stakes winner Mariah's Storm, Tumblebrutus is a full brother to Giant's Causeway. Giant's Causeway proved his effectiveness on dirt when he finished second behind Tiznow in the 2000 Breeders' Cup Classic.

The Mighty Tiger, yet another by Storm Cat (out of stakes winner Clear Mandate), finished third in the EBF Futurity - owned by Michael Tabor and Susan Magnier, he is also a possibility for the BC Juvenile.

Because the Breeders' Cup will be held in Southern California's warm climate this year, it is doubtful a large contingent of foreign juveniles would venture this way, but the European juveniles appear to be a particularly strong group and should be followed closely.