06/26/2001 12:00AM

Family line runs from misnomer to Plate

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LAS VEGAS - Like mother, like daughter. Ten years ago, Dance Smartly beat males in the Queen's Plate, Canada's most prestigious race for 3-year-olds, and last Sunday, her daughter Dancethruthedawn also defeated males to capture the Queen's Plate. Dancethruthedawn's victory is just the latest score for a female family that has meant as much to Canada as Grey Flight, Courtly Dee, Fall Aspen, Weekend Surprise, and other legendary broodmares have meant to the Unites States.

It all started with No Class, a daughter of Nodouble who was foaled in 1974. A stakes-placed half-sister to stakes winners Money by Orleans and Baraquillo, No Class went to the breeding shed without much fanfare, but she really was misnamed at birth. Although her female line had been productive, there was no hint of the kind of broodmare No Class was to become. In fact, it's no stretch to say that No Class is fast becoming the La Troienne of Canada, and her descendants have not limited their success to their native country.

No Class has produced six stakes winners from eight foals - a remarkable achievement. It's all the more extraordinary considering that four of her foals were champions. Sky Classic (Nijinsky II), Regal Classic (Vice Regent), and Grey Classic (Grey Dawn II) were all champion colts at 2, while Classy 'n Smart (Smarten) was a champion filly at 3. Her other stakes winners were Always a Classic (Deputy Minister) and Classic Reign (Vice Regent).

Also noteworthy is the fact that it didn't matter to whom No Class was bred. Five of her stakes winners were sired by different stallions. Sky Classic, her most successful runner, was also champion older horse and grass horse in Canada, and was U.S. grass champion at 5, when he won the Turf Classic Invitational. Caesars International, Arlington, Early Times Manhattan, and Early Times Dixie Handicaps. He also finished second by a nose to Fraise in the Breeders' Cup Turf and second to Dear Doctor in the Arlington Million.

While No Class's sons have become successful stallions, her daughters have also been prodigious, most notably Classy 'n Smart. Classy 'n Smart was named champion filly at 3 in Canada when she won the Canadian Oaks, Ontario Colleen Handicap, Fury Stakes, and Bison City Stakes. Like her dam, however, she was even more successful as a broodmare, producing Dance Smartly and Smart Strike, as well as stakes-placed Secret 'n Classy and the unraced Seattle Classic, the dam of the stakes winner Hello Seattle.

Smart Strike (Mr. Prospector) won the Philip H. Iselin Handicap (defeating Eltish, Serena's Song, and Petionville) and Salvator Mile Handicap, and was one of last year's promising freshman sires. His first crop includes Caught Out, Smart N Fast, Strike It Up, Until Sundown, Silk N Sapphire, It's So Simple, and Jrsoutofcontrol.

Dance Smartly had 12 victories, racing at 2, 3 and 4. Undefeated at 3, she was a champion in the U.S. and named Horse of the Year and champion 3-year-old filly in Canada. She was also champion 2-year-old filly in Canada, and her victories included the Breeders' Cup Distaff (defeating Versailles Treaty, Brought to Mind, Fit for a Queen, and Queena), Molson Export Million, Queen's Plate, Breeders' Stakes, Prince of Wales Stakes, Canadian Oaks, Selene Stakes, Canadian Maturity, Natalma Stakes, and Star Shoot Stakes.

Following the identical pattern of her dam and granddam, Dance Smartly has been a stakes-producing machine. Bred to Mr. Prospector, she foaled two stakes winners (Scatter the Gold and Dancethruthedawn) and one stakes-placed colt (Dance Brightly).

How phenomenal is this family? Last year, the lightly raced Scatter the Gold won last year's Queen's Plate and Prince of Wales Stakes, and now Dancethruthedawn won this year's Woodbine Oaks and Queen's Plate. Dance Brightly only raced twice at 2, winning his maiden debut and finishing second in his final start, the Coronation Futurity. Dance Brightly stands at Hill 'N' Dale Farms in Lexington, Ky. for $7,500, live foal, and his first crop are yearlings. Dance Smartly has a 2-year-old full brother to Dancethruthedawn, Scatter the Gold, and Dance Brightly, named Dance to Destiny.

Dancethruthedawn's victory in the Queen's Plate couldn't come at a better time for her owner-breeder, Sam-Son Farms. They lost two future broodmares from this female family. In 1999, Hello Seattle (Deputy Minister), an exciting 2-year-old filly, succumbed to injuries sustained in a prep for the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies. Recently, 3-year-old filly, Treasureinmyhand (Seeking the Gold), also suffered a fatal injury.

Class in the dam. In Thoroughbred pedigrees, the dam and her tail-female family are the key to racing class, and No Class and her daughters were nothing but first-class.

Dancethruthedawn, 1998

Br: Sam-Son Farm (Ont.)

Native Dancer

Raise a Native

Raise You

Mr. Prospector

1970Nashua

Gold Digger

Sequence

Northern Dancer

Danzig

Pas de Nom

Dance Smartly

1988 Smarten

Classy 'n Smart

No Class