05/25/2017 10:01AM

Fasig-Tipton Midlantic: Smart Strike still in demand

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Barbara D. Livingston
Smart Strike, who died in 2015, is represented by a full crop of 2-year-olds this year, and just four yearlings in his final crop.

There won’t be many more opportunities to purchase a son or daughter of perennial leading sire Smart Strike.

The former Lane’s End stallion, who died in March 2015, covered 81 mares for 66 foals in his penultimate crop, according to The Jockey Club’s Report of Mares Bred. Of that crop, current juveniles, one went through the ring at the Fasig-Tipton Midlantic sale of 2-year-olds in training, and she used her time in the spotlight to her advantage. Chris Brothers, in the name of his Xavier International Bloodstock, as agent, bid up to $525,000 to acquire the filly, named Smart Response.

The filly was consigned by Hartley/De Renzo Thoroughbreds as agent. She turned in a 10-second breeze at last week’s under-tack show, equaling the fastest work at the distance.

“I thought she had one of the best breezes I’ve ever seen over this track,” said Brothers, who purchased the filly on behalf of a partnership. “And it’s hard to knock a Smart Strike filly. She has some residual [value] down the road.”

Smart Strike covered five mares prior to his death in 2015, resulting in a final crop of four foals who are currently yearlings. Stakes winner Cascading, from the family of Broodmare of the Year Better Than Honour, delivered a colt; Group 3 winner Wonderfully and Fortheloveofnell, both daughters of international titan Galileo, delivered fillies; and Malvinia, a full sister to prominent sire Malibu Moon, also had a filly.

Meanwhile, Smart Strike is represented by three Eclipse Award-winning sons fashioning successful stud careers in Kentucky – Curlin at Hill ‘n’ Dale Farm, Lookin At Lucky at Coolmore’s Ashford Stud, and English Channel at Calumet Farm. Two-time Horse of the Year Curlin has become a prominent classic sire in his own right, already having sired Preakness Stakes winner Exaggerator, Belmont Stakes winner Palace Malice, and two classic-placed runners. He sired the Fasig-Tipton Midlantic sale-topper, a colt who sold for a sale-record $1.5 million.

“Not many better sires than Curlin,” said trainer Mark Casse, who signed the ticket for John Oxley and Breeze Easy LLC.