12/07/2017 10:26AM

Market for new stallions warming up

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Barbara D. Livingston
Arrogate will stand for a fee of $75,000 in his debut season.

In the early part of this century, stud fees for incoming Kentucky stallions were soaring. Horse of the Year Ghostzapper (Adena Springs) entered stud for $200,000 in 2006 – a debut fee it would take a decade, and a Triple Crown winner, to match – while champions Smarty Jones (Three Chimneys) and Bernardini (Darley) cashed in on their racetrack accomplishments to the tune of $100,000.

But the crash and subsequent recession of late 2008 hit the Thoroughbred bloodstock and sales industry hard, and with a selective market trending toward proven stock, debut stud fees became one of the clearest markers of those effects. Two-time Horse of the Year Curlin (Lane’s End), one of the most accomplished runners of recent years, debuted for “only” $75,000, and no Kentucky stallion in the next five years debuted for more than $35,000.

Arrogate, at $75,000, and Gun Runner, at $70,000, enter a market that again has warmed to new stallions. Here is a year-by-year look at Kentucky’s top incoming stud fees of the past decade.

Year ... Stallion ... Farm ... Stud fee

2009 ... Curlin ... Lane’s End ... $75,000

2010 ... Zensational ... Hill ‘n’ Dale 25,000

2011 ... Blame ... Claiborne ... 35,000

2011 ... Lookin At Lucky ... Coolmore/Ashford ... 35,000

2011 ... Quality Road ... Lane’s End ... 35,000

2012 ... Uncle Mo ... Coolmore/Ashford ... 35,000

2013 ... Union Rags ... Lane’s End ... 35,000

2014 ... Animal Kingdom ... Darley ... 35,000*

2015 ... Will Take Charge ... Three Chimneys ... 30,000

2016 ... American Pharaoh ... Coolmore/Ashford ... 200,000

2017 ... Frosted ... Darley ... 50,000

2018 ... Arrogate ... Juddmonte ... 75,000

*First Kentucky season for Animal Kingdom, who entered stud the prior Southern Hemisphere season in Australia