05/30/2013 2:22PM

Hot Sire: Tiznow


TiznowCourtesy WinStar FarmTiznow

Tiznow, the two-time winner of the Breeders’ Cup Classic and the 2000 Horse of the Year, has fashioned a consistent stud career at Kenny Troutt’s WinStar Farm in Versailles, Ky., succeeding both as a sire of racehorses and in the commercial arena. Many of Tiznow’s best progeny are like their sire in developing as late 3-year-olds or even later in their racing careers, and such is the case with his recent Grade 1 winner Tiz Miz Sue.

Tiz Miz Sue had been performing capably in stakes company since fall 2011 but had only two Grade 3 wins, in the 2012 and 2013 Azeri Stakes at Oaklawn, to show for it. Her best overall effort during this 14-race span arguably came in the Grade 2 Delaware Handicap last July, when she finished second by a neck to champion Royal Delta.

This spring at age 6, she took the Azeri and then ran second by a half-length to On Fire Baby in the Grade 1 Apple Blossom Handicap at Oaklawn before shipping to Belmont Park for the Ogden Phipps on Memorial Day. Tiz Miz Sue scored her breakthrough win in a Grade 1 race in the 1 1/16-mile Phipps, outdueling Authenticity to win by a half-length and leaving Grade 1 winners Joyful Victory and Believe You Can in her wake.

Tiz Miz Sue has earned more than $1.1 million in five seasons of racing for owner and breeder Carol Ricks’s Cresran LLC. She is out of the Woodman mare Sue’s Good News, who won three stakes during the early 2000s, including a Grade 3 event at Arlington Park.

Her second dam, the unraced Easy Goer mare Montera, is a half-sister to Grade 1 winner Serape. Montera produced the stakes winner and sire Easyfromthegitgo and three other winners in addition to Sue’s Good News. Tiz Miz Sue’s third dam, the Grade 1-placed Mochila, by In Reality, is a half-sister to the late champion turf male and leading sire Cozzene.

Like most of Tiznow’s graded stakes-winning progeny, Tiz Miz Sue has performed best going a mile or longer and should be a key player in some of the marquee route races for fillies and mares in the summer and fall.

Tiznow ranks 20th on the North American general sire list. The 16-year-old son of Cee’s Tizzy has generally ranked in the mid-teens to mid-20s on the general sire list in recent years, save for 2008 and 2009, when he ranked third and fourth.

Well Armed was Tiznow’s leading earner for both of those seasons – taking the rich, Group 1 Dubai World Cup in 2009 – but the sire also was represented by two notable 3-year-olds in 2008, when Da’ Tara scored an upset win in the Belmont Stakes and Colonel John prevailed in a thrilling edition of the Travers Stakes. Colonel John, Tiznow’s best 3-year-old to date, is now a freshman standing at WinStar, and his progeny have been well received at yearling and juvenile auctions.

From eight crops ages 3 and up, Tiznow has sired 386 winners, 44 stakes winners (5.5 percent from foals ages 3 and up), and 24 graded stakes winners, with progeny earnings of $48.1 million. He has sired a Breeders’ Cup winner (Juvenile Fillies victress Folklore), a Met Mile winner (Tizway, who also won the Whitney), and several other Grade 1 winners on dirt. He has sired two champions: Folklore, 2005 champion juvenile filly, and Bear Now, the winner of the Sovereign Award as Canada’s champion older female in 2008.

Standing for a fee of $75,000 at WinStar, Tiznow has 117 registered 2-year-olds in 2013, none of whom had started as of Wednesday. He has maintained a six-figure average for yearlings and juveniles sold at auction in the past two years. Tiznow’s top-selling juvenile this year, a colt out of the Storm Cat mare Cool Storm, sold for $525,000 to Three Chimneys Farm at the Fasig-Tipton Florida sale.

Tiznow was one of the most popular racehorses in North America during the turn of the millennium, and his hard-charging racing style drew fans to the track in a show of both national and regional support. Bred in California by Cecilia Straub-Rubens, Tiznow made his debut at Santa Anita in April 2000 as a 3-year-old for the partnership of Straub-Rubens and Michael Cooper.

Sixth in his debut, he would finish no worse than third the rest of his career. He emerged from an unsettled 3-year-old crop during the fall, dominating the Grade 1 Super Derby and defeating older horses in the Grade 2 Goodwood Breeders’ Cup Handicap before reaching his first acme in the Breeders’ Cup Classic at Churchill Downs, where he outlasted Europe’s “Iron Horse” and eventual leading sire, Giant’s Causeway, by a neck.

Tiznow’s sensational second half of 2000 earned him Eclipse Awards as champion 3-year-old male and Horse of the Year.

Tiznow picked up two more graded stakes wins early in his 4-year-old season, including the Grade 1 Santa Anita Handicap, before he was sidelined for six months with a back injury. Returning in the fall, he notched back-to-back thirds in the Woodward and the Goodwood but then won the Breeders’ Cup Classic again.

Rallying in Belmont’s stretch under Chris McCarron, Tiznow was challenged to his outside by Sakhee, who shipped to the United States after winning the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe. Responding gamely, Tiznow found more in the final strides to eke out a nose win.

Tiznow retired on top, with career earnings of $6.4 million – still a record for a California-bred. He was honored as champion older male in 2001.

Straub-Rubens died shortly after Tiznow’s first Breeders’ Cup, and a year later, Cooper and her heirs solicited offers from several stud farms before selecting WinStar, which partnered with Taylor Made Stallions to purchase an interest in the stallion prospect. It has been smooth sailing ever since, with the stallion’s name never far from the headlines.

In recent weeks, Tiznow’s female family has been thoroughly examined by pedigree analysts, as his full sister Tizamazing is the dam of Preakness Stakes winner Oxbow. Tiznow’s and Tizamazing’s dam, Cee’s Tizzy, is one of the most successful broodmares of the past 15 years, also producing Grade 2 winners Budroyale – the runner-up in the 1999 Breeders’ Cup Classic – and Tizdubai, stakes winner Tizbud, and Tizso, the dam of 2012 Haskell winner Paynter.

Tiznow is a great-grandson of In Reality, one of the best sires of sires and broodmare sires of the late 20th century. That line traces to the legendary Man o’ War, making Tiznow’s stature in contemporary breeding even more important.

Colonel John’s first crop is set to race this year, and the first foals by Tizway, who stands at Spendthrift Farm in Lexington, Ky., arrive this year. These two young stallions represent Tiznow’s best chance to succeed as a sire of sires and carry on the Man o’ War line.