04/29/2016 12:26PM

Hinkle Farms shooting for Derby-Oaks double


The small-scale but quality operation Hinkle Farms will have a strong rooting interest in both the Kentucky Derby and Kentucky Oaks, as its broodmare band of about 30 includes the dams of both Derby favorite Nyquist and Oaks contender Weep No More.

The Hinkle family, which has been raising Thoroughbreds for more than half a century, maintains a boutique operation on just over 1,000 acres in Paris, Ky. The farm is co-owned by brothers Tom and Henry Hinkle, who were raised on the farm after their father began buying horses in the 1960s, and Tom’s daughter Anne.

Tom Hinkle purchased the winning Forestry mare Seeking Gabrielle for a relatively inexpensive $130,000 out of the 2013 Keeneland November breeding stock sale. The mare had delivered her first foal, a colt by freshman sire Uncle Mo, earlier that year in the name of breeder Summerhill Farm and was in foal to Blame.

The Uncle Mo colt was, of course, Nyquist, who comes into the Kentucky Derby unbeaten in seven starts, including the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile and the Florida Derby. His bankroll of more than $3.2 million will make him the richest horse ever to start in the Derby. The association has paid dividends for the Hinkles as well. Last September, with Nyquist’s stock rising rapidly, the Blame filly sold for $330,000 to Bridlewood Farm.

Seeking Gabrielle delivered a Flatter colt in March at Hinkle Farms. She is booked to the popular commercial stallion War Front for 2016.

Weep No More was bred in partnership by Hinkle Farms, which purchased her dam, the Storm Cat mare Crosswinds, for $140,000 out of the 2009 Keeneland November sale, and Ben Kessinger. They sold the yearling filly for $90,000 at the 2014 Keeneland November sale.

Weep No More, who earned her spot in the Kentucky Oaks by rallying furiously to win the Ashland Stakes, is the second starter and first winner out of Crosswinds. The mare is the dam of a yearling colt by Blame and delivered a Curlin colt in March.

Other prominent runners bred and sold by Hinkle Farms in recent years include Grade 2 winner Divisidero and Grade 3 winner Ageless. Divisidero is pointing to the Grade 1 Woodford Reserve Turf Classic on the Derby undercard.