08/13/2016 4:36PM

Hansen sires his first stakes winner with a first-time starter


Freshman sire Hansen, champion juvenile male of 2011, sired his first stakes winner when the 2-year-old colt Han Sense, making his first career start, won the $90,000 Iowa Cradle Stakes Saturday at Prairie Meadows.

Han Sense is owned by Kendall Hansen, who bred and raced Hansen, and is trained by Mike Maker, who trained Hansen. Han Sense was bred by H. Allen Poindexter and sold for $125,000 at the Fasig-Tipton Kentucky July sale.

Ridden by Ramon Vazquez, Han Sense was off slowly at the start of the six-furlong Iowa Cradle, which had 11 starters, as he hesitating a bit at the break. He was ninth early, saving ground from his three post, and came along the inside throughout, rallying from seventh at the quarter pole to post a 1 1/2-length victory over 30-1 Dreamin the Dream, by Woke Up Dreamin, with 19-1 Major Mingo, by Tizdejavu, third. Han Sense completed the race in 1:12.07. He went off as the 6-5 favorite and earned $52,500 for the victory.

The champion racehorse Hansen was initially raced solely by Dr. Hansen, and he won all three of his starts at two. While he was by leading sire Tapit, Hansen was out of the cheap claiming mare Storming Sunday, by Sir Cat, and while Dr. Hansen may have overbred the mare, he was rewarded him handsomely, as Hansen clearly outran his pedigree by leaps and bounds and showed blazing early speed.

Making his debut at Turfway Park, Hansen won his maiden by 12 1/4 lengths going 5 1/2 furlongs and then took the 1 1/16-mile Kentucky Cup Juvenile at the same track by 13 1/4 lengths. In his third start, he captured the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile at Churchill Downs by a head over favored Union Rags, clinching the Eclipse Award.

At 3, after Skychai Racing bought an interest in the colt, Hansen was second to Algorithms in the Grade 3 Holy Bull, won the Grade 3 Gotham, was second to Dullahan in the Grade 1 Blue Grass, and then ninth in I’ll Have Another’s Kentucky Derby. He came back to win the Grade 3 Iowa Derby in June and closed his career with a fourth-place finish in the Grade 2 West Virginia Derby. He won five of nine career starts and earned $1,810,805.

Hansen was retired to stand at Ashford Stud for the 2013 breeding season for a fee of $12,500 and is represented by 102 foals in his first crop. He was sold to the Korean Racing Authority after that initial breeding season and now stands in South Korea.

Hansen’s progeny were well received at sales. Last year, he had 56 yearlings go through the sales ring for an average of $50,600, four times his stud fee, and this year he had 32 juveniles sell for an average of $79,500,more than six times his 2013 stud fee.

Hansen has had six winners from 15 starters and progeny earnings of $181,985.