10/03/2002 11:00PM

Freshman stallions bring excitement to mixed sale


The annual Ocala Breeders' fall mixed sale, which runs Monday through Thursday, is the first of the season's major mixed sales and it could well serve as a market barometer.

"There are a number of popular new stallions represented in this sale, and I think they will create a momentum," said Tom Ventura, OBS general manager and sales director. "Otherwise, I don't anticipate any great changes from last year's sales data."

The consensus is that the August OBS yearling sale was weak on sire power, with few exciting new stallions. Much has happened since then. Several of Florida's freshmen stallions are now well up in the national rankings, and many of these stallions have weanlings, yearlings, and mares in foal for this week's sale.

The numbers are changing daily, but at last count Ocala Stud's Concerto (by Chief's Crown) is Florida's leading freshman sire by earnings. He has 33 registered 2-year-olds, 17 starters, and eight winners. His best offspring is the stakes winner Collymore Hall. Lucky Lionel (by Mt. Livermore), the state's second-leading freshman sire, stands at Adena Springs South. He started strongly and has six winners from 14 starters, including stakes-placed Lucky Magnus. Third on the Florida roster is Stormy Atlantic (by Storm Cat) with seven winners from 14 starters. The Bridlewood Farm resident is the sire of two stakes winners, including Atlantic Ocean.

Rounding out Florida's leading freshmen list are Double Honor (by Gone West) at Farnsworth Farms and Northern Afleet (by Afleet) at Double Diamond Farm. Double Honor has seven winners from 24 starters, including a winner in Italy. Northern Afleet has 11 runners and six of them have won.

The Sunshine State's leading juvenile sire is Tactical Advantage (by Forty Niner). This is the fifth crop to race by the Marablue Farm stallion and he has 10 winners from 25 starters this year - two of whom are stakes winners. Rounding out the top five juvenile sires are Mecke (Ocala Stud), Formal Dinner (Hidden Point Farm), West Acre (Stonehedge Farm South), and Notebook (Ocala Stud).

Padua Stables' young stallions are well represented in this sale.

Six mares sell in the preferred session carrying the first foals of the near-millionaire Grade 1 stakes winner Delaware Township. The Grade 2 stakes winner Exchange Rate has seven mares believed in foal in the early sessions. Yes It's True, another Grade 1 stakes winner in the Padua Stable cadre of stallions, has 13 mares in the sale believed in foal.

Songandaprayer, a bay son of Unbridled's Song who stands with Tactical Advantage at Marablue Farm, tests the market with five mares believed in foal. Songandaprayer won the Grade 1 Fountain of Youth Stakes and was second in the Grade 1 Blue Grass Stakes. He won the Huntington Stakes at Aqueduct as a juvenile.

Saint Ballado is the sire of the Grade 2 stakes winner Straight Man, standing at Dunhill Stud, and Grade 3 stakes winner Sweetsouthernsaint, standing at Ocala Stud. Both stallions have mares believed in foal and a number of weanlings from their first crops in the OBS auction.

Franks Farms South is holding phase two of its reduction of breeding and racing stock. Among the offerings are weanlings and mares in foal by Florida's leading second-season sire Lost Soldier. The Franks Farm consignment begins the auction and continues through Hip No. 98.

Another major reduction is that of Farnsworth Farms. For itself and as agent, Farnsworth Farms has cataloged 40 broodmares, 27 yearlings, and Rocket Ryan, a stakes winner by Charlie Barley, as a stallion prospect.

Jeblar killed by lightning

Jeblar, a 20-year-old son of Alydar, was about to be relocated from Farnsworth to Iowa for the 2003 breeding season when he was fatally struck by lightning. He had stood at Farnsworth Farms since 1988.

"He was good to us," said Farnsworth Farms manager Bill Allen, "and I think he would have been good for Iowa breeders, too."

Through September, Jeblar was the sire of 27 stakes winners and had nearly $20 million in progeny earnings. He has three more crops to come.