06/05/2008 11:00PM

OBS catalogs 562 for final 2-year-olds in training sale


Despite a slackening economy, soaring feed and transportation prices, and the costly Calder Race Course purse dispute between Florida horsemen and Churchill Downs, this was a good year overall for most consignors to the Ocala Breeders' Sales Co.'s three previous auctions of 2-year-olds in training.

The final sale on the 2008 Florida calendar is set for 10:30oa.m. June 17-18. There are 562 2-year-olds in training cataloged for this OBS auction, along with 29 older horses of racing age.

The first of the two under-tack shows is set for June 14. Horses cataloged for the first day of the sale, Hip No. 1 through 296, will go under tack starting at 8 a.m. The 293 remaining 2-year-olds and older horses will go under tack at 8 a.m. June 15.

"The June sale has been getting stronger each year," said Tom Ventura, sales director and general manager of OBS. "All you have to do is look at the cover of our June catalog to see that two graded stakes winners, Behindatthebar and Visionaire, came out of this sale last year. We had guarded optimism going into the April sale, in part due to the general economy. But April held up. And I am confident June will, too."

The 288 Florida-breds account for almost half the horses consigned to this sale. There are 161 Kentucky-breds, 82 New York-breds, and 17 Pennsylvania-breds, along with a smattering of homebreds from 10 additional states and Canada.

"There are horses for all pocketbooks and statebred programs," Ventura said.

Catalog updates are occurring daily - especially regarding the success of freshmen sires. The following is a list of Florida stallions who have sired at least one winner from their first crops.

Leading the group in wins is the Hartley-DeRenzo sire Roar of the Tiger. He is a younger full brother to the world-class sire Giant's Causeway. Roar of the Tiger has 57 registered 2-year-olds, eight of them have started, and three of them have won. There's a colt, a gelding, and a filly in the June sale by this son of Storm Cat. Hartley-DeRenzo also stands the graded stakes winner Omega Code. The son of Elusive Quality has 67 registered 2-year-olds, seven have started, and he has a winner. There are 11 2-year-olds by Omega Code cataloged for OBS June.

Alke, a graded-stakes-winning son of Grand Slam, stands at the Vinery. The chestnut stallion has 45 in his first crop, four have started, and two have won. Vinery also stands Peace Rules, whose first winner, Trifecta King, took the Cinderella Stakes at Hollywood Park last month. Alke is represented by six in the June sale; Peace Rules has four cataloged.

Repent is Florida's leading second-season sire and is ranked among the top 10 nationally. He began his career at Clover Leaf II but is now at the Vinery. There are 11 2-year-olds by Repent cataloged.

The stallions Songandaprayer and Exchange Rate have been relocated to Kentucky. Songandaprayer has 11 cataloged and Exchange Rate has four.

Mr. Livingston, a nearly white son of El Prado, is a graded stakes winner who won seven stakes and placed in seven more, including the Grade 2 Pan American Handicap. He went to the post 40 times and earned just less than $500,000.

Mr. Livingston preferred a mile or more, and, while he showed ability on the dirt and turf, he was more at home on the grass. Last week at Calder, D.C. Legacy, a gray son of Mr. Livingston, made his debut in a maiden special race at 4 1/2 furlongs. D.C. Legacy flashed early speed, surrendered the lead at the final furlong marker, and then came back to edge a seasoned rival by a half-length. There are 30 in Mr. Livingston's first crop, and two of them, a gray or roan filly and a bay filly, are cataloged to sell in June.

Safe in the USA is a regally bred stallion holding court at Lambholm South. By champion sprinter Gulch and out of champion sprinter Safely Kept, the 9-year-old stallion started 16 times, won 5 times, and placed 6 times, but earned no black type. There are 18 horses in his first crop, and Short Some, a winner this past week at Monmouth, was his first starter. There is a gelding and a colt by Safe in the USA consigned to the June sale.