10/04/2006 12:00AM

Lemon Drop Kid finally making impact on turf



Lemon Drop Kid was a major stakes winner at 2, 3, and 4, and he is by far the most successful son of Kingmambo to have raced on dirt. Because he won such races as the Futurity, Belmont, and Travers stakes, and Whitney, Woodward, Suburban, and Brooklyn handicaps - all on dirt - there was never a reason to try him on grass, despite the prowess of his sire on turf. Kingmambo was a multiple Group 1 winner in Europe and is out of Miesque, the champion mare and two-time winner of the Breeders' Cup Mile.

Thus, it is no surprise that Lemon Drop Kid's offspring are enjoying success on grass. On Sept. 20, Christmas Kid, a

2-year-old filly by Kingmambo out of the multiple-stakes-winning Green Desert mare Christmas Gift, pressed the pace and drew clear to win a six-furlong maiden race on turf at 5-1. Christmas Kid has an HT2 (hidden turf x 2) pedigree as she gets turf from both her sire and damsire, who was a top-class Group 1-winning sprinter in Europe. Add to all that grass breeding a high-class female family, and Christmas Kid has a complete package. Her dam, Christmas Gift, is a half-sister to Bright Candles, the dam of Grand Slam. Her third dam, stakes winner Sugar Plum Time, was a full sister to Yule Log, the dam of champion Christmas Past, and she was also a half-sister to Sweet Tooth, the dam of Alydar and Our Mims.

Two days later, Lemon Drop Kid had another good-looking winner on turf when Citronnade, a 3-year-old filly out of the Lord at War mare Primarily, won the Graceful Darby Stakes at seven furlongs on the grass. Citronnade is a half-sister to stakes winners Primaly, Poetically, and Whiskey Wisdom.

* In addition to being a Hall of Fame trainer, the late P.G. Johnson was also an astute student of pedigrees who bred many stakes winners. Willshefire, a 3-year-old filly by Williamstown out of the Infantry mare She's a Dragon, won a six-furlong allowance on the turf on Sept. 22. Willshefire was bred in partnership by Johnson's Amherst Stable, Jeffrey Foong, and Mun-Yet Lum. Johnson often recalled that he loved breeding She's a Dragon to Williamstown because it resulted in three crosses of the influential broodmare Little Hut, through her sons Northfields and Habitat. Johnson enjoyed matching mares that he purchased with stallions that many times would result in inbreeding to a particular female, otherwise known as the Rasmussen Factor.

* Stakes winner Sassy Pants has been a remarkable broodmare. She is the dam of the brilliantly fast stakes winners Madcap Escapade (by Hennessy) and Dubai Escapade (Awesome Again), and on Sept. 23, her 2-year-old colt Real Estate (High Yield) started his career like he might have a promising future, winning a seven-furlong maiden race over the heavy favorite, Most Distinguished, by a head at 6-1. High Yield gets versatile runners who are winning on dirt and turf.

* Nunnery won a one-mile maiden race on grass on Sept. 24, and the 3-year-old filly by Forest Wildcat has a pedigree of speed and high class. In addition to the brilliance of her sire, she is out of the A.P. Indy mare Convent, a full sister to stakes winner and successful stallion Pulpit. Nunnery should be effective at distances up to nine furlongs on grass, and Bill Mott may have another future grass stakes filly.

* Include is off to an excellent start at stud. One of this year's freshmen stallions, he had memorable winners in the past few weeks, including Megan's World, a 2-year-old filly who won a 5 1/2-furlong maiden race by 5 1/2 lengths.

Include's biggest juvenile winner was Cash Included, who upset the highly regarded Point Ashley in the Oak Leaf Breeders' Cup on Sept. 30. Point Ashley, who was regarded as the leading 2-year-old filly in the country, made a run at Cash Included, but could not get closer than 4 3/4 lengths while clearly second after a wide trip from an outside post.


Another freshman sire off to a very good start is Three Wonders, a son of Storm Cat who appears he will have better success as a stallion than he did as a racehorse. On Sept. 23, Gal Wonder, a 2-year-old filly by Three Wonders out of the Proud Birdie mare Gainesville Gal, won the Brave Raj Breeders' Cup Stakes, paying $21.60. Three Wonders has 11 winners, including Flipaway, his most recent winner, who won a maiden race at Calder on Sept. 29.

Golden Gate

Candy's Bro won a 5 1/2-furlong maiden race on Sept. 20, and the 2-year-old colt is from the first crop of the speedy E Dubai. His dam, Candy Cane, is a full sister to the Grade 1 stakes winner Candy Ride.


Michael Matz has a 2-year-old filly, Regally Bred, who bears watching following her maiden debut victory at one mile on Sept. 23. Like her name implies, Regally Bred has an imposing pedigree. By A.P. Indy, she is out of the Storm Cat mare Double Cat, a half-sister to War Chant, Ministers Wild Cat, and Ivan Denisovich. Her second dam is champion Hollywood Wildcat.