03/13/2013 4:09PM

Oklahoma: Liquor Cabinet, leading freshman sire

Email

Liquor Cabinet led Oklahoma freshman sires in earnings for 2012 by nearly $5,000 over Air Commander. The Irish-bred 12-year-old Hennessy horse, who stands at Oklahoma Equine in Washington, Okla., for a $2,500 fee this year, sired two winners from nine starters last year, Irish Dancer and Yonder.

Both Oklahoma-bred geldings broke their maidens last fall at Remington Park, and Irish Dancer picked up his second win on Feb. 24 in an optional claiming race at Sunland Park.

[MORE: See a list of Oklahoma's leading sires from 2012]

An Edward P. Evans homebred, Liquor Cabinet won five of 12 starts and earned $234,968 in five seasons of racing. A gritty competitor on the New York circuit, he also finished second five times. Liquor Cabinet saved his best race for his last, unleashing a front-running, nine-length romp in the Grade 3 Aqueduct Handicap in January 2007 and earning a 113 Beyer Speed Figure. He was retired that April after an ankle injury.

Liquor Cabinet proved to be versatile as a racehorse, displaying his sire’s penchant for speed in his Grade 3 score but also winning races from a stalking position. He made his first six starts at sprint distances before stretching out to a mile or longer in his last six, with four wins. Both of Irish Dancer’s wins have come at 5 1/2 furlongs after racing on or near the early lead. Yonder is winless in seven sprints but took a mile maiden special weight event from off the pace last November.

The stallion is out of Grade 1-placed stakes-winner Key Hunter, by Jade Hunter. Key Hunter is a half-sister to turf sprint stakes winner and Grade 3-placed Hatfield and to Cabo de Noche, dam of sharp middle-distance performer and 2011 Louisiana Derby winner Pants On Fire. Interestingly, Liquor Cabinet has no inbreeding through his first five generations, making the stallion an attractive prospect to breeders seeking to develop new bloodlines.