08/06/2016 6:51PM

Freshman sire Bullet Train represented by his first winner


Bullet Train, who took a backseat to his famous, year-younger three-quarter-brother Frankel for most of his racing career, sired his first winner on August 6 when first-time starter Difamante won a $42,000 maiden special weight race for 2-year-olds at a mile on turf at Gulfstream Park.

Owned by Luis Duco Stables and trained by Luis Duco, Difamante came from last of 11 starters to win by a half-length over Zipping, with favored Adonis Creed third. He paid $57.80 to win as the only first-time starter in the race.

Ridden by Martin Ramirez, Difamante had to check sharply shortly after the start and was at the back of the pack for most of the race. He commenced his rally on the turn and came five wide into the stretch to get up to win by a half-length.

Bred in Kentucky by Polo Green Stable, Difamante is out of the A.P. Indy mare Money Madam and was purchased by Duco for $20,000 at the Ocala Breeders’ Sales Co.’s March 2-year-olds in training sale. He earned $24,000 for the victory.

English-bred Bullet Train, by Sadler’s Wells out of Kind, by Danehill, was bred and raced by Khalid Abdullah’s Juddmonte Farm.

He started 14 times from ages 2 through 5 and won twice, earning $177,737, though his record is clouded by the fact that late in his career he was principally a pacemaker for Frankel. That was the case in his last start at age 4, in the Group 1 Queen Elizabeth II Stakes, as well in all five starts he made at 5, all in Group 1 races won by Frankel, who was two-time European Horse of the Year and undefeated in 14 starts. Frankel, also a freshman sire this year, is off to a fast start at stud. Frankel is by Galileo, a son of Sadler’s Wells.

At 3, Bullet Train won the Group 3 Derby Trial Stakes at Lingfield, before finishing 12th in the Epsom Derby. Like Frankel, he was trained by Henry Cecil.

For stud duty, Bullet Train was purchased from Juddmonte and brought to the U.S. to stand. He stood his first season for a fee of $7,500 at Wintergreen Farm in Midway, Ky. before moving in his second year to Crestwood Farm in Lexington, Ky., where he has stood since. His fee remains $7,500.

Bullet Train has 44 juveniles in his first crop Northern Hemisphere crop, and he stood the subsequent Southern Hemisphere at stud and sired 116  foals of 2014, with those foals just turning 2 in the Southern Hemisphere.

In the Northern Hemisphere, Bullet Train has had six starters thus far.

On the same day Bullet Train sired his first winner, Frankel’s first starter in the U.S. made his debut, but that horse, Brooklyn Bobby, finished off the board in a turf race at Saratoga. He was favored but finished sixth, having to check soon after the start.