09/08/2014 1:19PM

Keeneland September: Half-sister to Beholder goes to Bridlewood for $1.1 million


By Joe Nevills and Nicole Russo

A Curlin filly who is a half sister to champion Beholder and Grade 1 winner Into Mischief, was the first to crack the seven-figure mark at the Keeneland September yearling sale, going for $1.1 million to Bridlewood Farm of Ocala, Fla.

The filly was consigned by owner Clarkland Farm, which bred Beholder and owns her dam, the stakes winning Tricky Creek mare Leslie’s Lady. The outfit purchased the mare for just $100,000 out of the Keeneland November breeding stock sale 11 years ago. Leslie’s Lady, a finalist for Kentucky’s Broodmare of the Year award last year, is now the dam of five winners from six starters, highlighted by Beholder and Grade 1 winner Into Mischief.

“When a family catches on fire like that, it’s just a blessing,” Clarkland’s Marty Buckner said. “We’re very lucky, and better lucky than smart. Into Mischief has proven it in the breeding shed, and Leslie’s daughters are starting to produce stakes horses, so it’s really nice that she’s a filly. She’s got a lot of class and a lot of eye appeal. She’s got a beautiful shoulder, and has a really nice walk. She walks well out here on the gravel, but she’s a sight to behold on the turf.”

[More Keeneland September coverage on DRF Live]

Beholder won the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies in 2012 and the Breeders’ Cup Distaff last year to secure divisional Eclipse Award honors in both seasons. The five-time Grade 1 winner is pointing for the Grade 1 Zenyatta Stakes Sept. 27 at Santa Anita prior to her title defense in the Distaff.

Into Mischief never finished worse than second in six career starts, posting his biggest victory in the Grade 1 CashCall Futurity. Now a young stallion at Spendthrift Farm in Lexington, Ky., he has gotten his stud career off to a fast start, producing Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile winner Goldencents, Louisiana Derby and Super Derby winner Vicar’s in Trouble, and graded stakes winner Vyjack from his first two crops to race.

Leslie’s Lady’s daughters have also carried the family’s success into a second generation. Daisy Mason is the dam of stakes winner Harry’s Holiday, while another daughter, Judy B, is the dam of stakes-placed winner Sarah Her Highness.

"She's got a huge pedigree and looks like she can run," Bridlewood general manager George Isaacs, who signed the ticket, said. "It's a foundation-type family for Bridlewood Farm."

This filly became the most expensive horse sold out of Leslie’s Lady, easily topping Beholder, a $180,000 yearling purchase by Spendthrift; and Into Mischief, an $80,000 yearling whom Spendthrift then landed for $180,000 as a 2-year-old in training. Head Quarters, a full sister to Monday’s offering, sold for $300,000 as a yearling in 2012.

"I was hoping a little less than that, but I was prepared," Isaacs said. "I knew I might have to go to a million, but obviously, I had to reach a little farther than I wanted to. She's just an alpha-type physical and she's got a big walk and looks like she can run. If she didn't look like she could run, I wouldn't have bought her. She looks like she'll go to the racetrack and do what she needs to do."

Two-time Horse of the Year and leading North American moneywinner Curlin was inducted into racing’s Hall of Fame this summer, in his first year of eligibility. The son of Smart Strike, who stands alongside his sire at Lane’s End in Versailles, Ky., got his stud career off to a rousing start, producing 2013 Belmont Stakes winner Palace Malice from his first crop and 2014 Preakness Stakes runner-up Ride On Curlin from his second crop.

The filly out of Leslie's Lady became the first foal sired by Curlin to fetch seven figures at a public auction.