10/22/2013 11:41AM

Fasig-Tipton Kentucky: Conquest Stables secures Distorted Humor colt for $500,000


It did not take long for the second session of the Fasig-Tipton Kentucky fall yearling sale to set a hot pace on Tuesday, with a Distorted Humor colt selling to Ernie Semersky’s Conquest Stables for $500,000 as the fifth horse through the ring.

The purchase doubled the previous sale-leading price of $250,000 established during Monday’s opening session by a Harlan’s Holiday colt purchased by Nick de Meric, as agent.

Trainer Mark Casse signed the ticket on the Ontario-bred colt, who is out of winning Corporate Report mare Annasan, Canada’s Broodmare of the Year in 2004. The chestnut colt, named Hot Humor, is a sibling to four winners from four foals to race out of his dam, including 2005 Canadian Horse of the Year A Bit O’Gold, Canadian classic-placed stakes winner Arco’s Gold, and stakes-placed winner Adjalah.

Casse said he spoke with Semersky before the horse entered the ring and was given the green light to pursue him. The owner primarily races at Woodbine, placing Ontario-breds at a premium for his program.

“He told me to go find a good Canadian-bred,” the trainer said. “I just talked to him on the phone, and he said, ‘Is this one really good?’ and I said, ‘This one’s really good.’ I told him he was going to be expensive, but I didn’t tell him what price. I’m sure he’ll be fine with it.

“Obviously, we like buying Canadian-breds,” he continued. “It’s not why we buy them, but it’s just kind of an added bonus.”

Casse said that Hot Humor has “a lot of similarities” to Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile contender Laugh Track, another son of Distorted Humor in the trainer’s barn.

Hot Humor’s sale price made him the most expensive foal to sell at public auction out of his award-winning dam. Casse admitted that the air was starting to get thin when the colt approached a half-million dollars.

“With those horses, it’s just tough to know,” he said about predicting the colt’s price. “It was getting to where I was wanting it to stop.”

Bred in Ontario by Steven Di Iorio, the colt’s extended family includes Grade 3 winners Goldseeker Bud and Coyote Lakes, as well as Grade 1-placed stakes winner Ashboro. He was consigned, as agent, by Hill ‘n’ Dale Sales Agency.