03/05/2004 12:00AM

Parade of 2-year-old sales continues


On the heels of the Ocala Breeders' Sale Company and the Fasig Tipton selected 2-year-old in training sales at Calder Race course - two of the more successful such sales on record - comes the Ocala-based OBS selected sale of 2 year-olds in training on March 16-17. Just after that, the Adena Springs auction of homebred 2-year-olds will be held on the Adena grounds on March 18 at 6 p.m.

The OBS has cataloged 484 horses for its sale. Adena Springs has cataloged 76.

Adena Springs will hold an under-tack preview of its sales 2 year-olds starting at noon March 18. Viewing and inspection time will conclude before the start of the auction.

The OBS catalog is a representative group, with the highest number, 171, being Kentucky-breds. Florida follows with 125. The number of New York-bred 2-year-olds, 61, reflects the growing Florida-New York breeding and commercial connection.

The Adena Springs catalog breaks down to 30 Florida-breds, 25 Kentucky-breds, 18 Canadian-breds, and three with California-bred credentials. Montbrook, Florida's leading sire in 2003, and newcomer Yes It's True, each have a dozen 2-year-olds in the sale. Yes It's True's 2-year-olds at the Calder sale averaged nearly $130,000.

Millionaire racehorse Running Stag, whose first crop races this year, has 23 offspring cataloged in the two sales. Three of these, two colts and a filly, sell with the OBS, while the remaining 20 will be offered at the Adena Springs auction. Running Stag (by Cozzene out of Fruhlingstag, by Orsini II) stands at Adena Springs South for a fee of $7,500 live foal. A globe-trotting competitor, Running Stag was a crowd pleaser, and equally at home on dirt or turf. These sales are his first major commercial market tests.

Festival entries close Monday

The entry box will be open through Monday afternoon for the six-race Ocala Breeders' Sale Festival of Racing, which will be held on March 15. The $100,000 OBS Championship Stakes, with divisions for 3-year-old males and 3 year-old females, both carded at 1 1/16 miles, are the twin features. The OBS Sprint Stakes, with male and female divisions as well as well, are each at six furlongs, and both carry purses of $50,000. The remaining two stakes are the $40,000 Florida Thoroughbred Charities Stakes, for 3 year-olds and older, at five furlongs, and the $40,000 Florida Breeders' Distaff Stakes at 1 1/16 miles.

The Florida Thoroughbred Charities Stakes is restricted to the get of the 124 stallions who had seasons donated to charity via the FTC sale of seasons in 2000. The Florida Breeders' Distaff Stakes prefers fillies and mares who are Florida-breds. Supplemental nominations are available for all four of the OBS-sponsored stakes. Information and entries for the entire Festival of Racing program are available from Rick Coyne, racing secretary for the OBS, at (352) 237-7119

* Steinbrenner's Ramada Inn is the site for the annual Florida Thoroughbred Breeders' and Owners' Association annual awards banquet Monday evening, March 15. Tickets go for $75. The event begins at 6:30 p.m., and following dinner awards will be given to the outstanding Florida owners and breeders of 2003. Those seeking tickets should contact the association at (352) 629-2160.

* George Onett and longtime companion Ann Sleeman were married last week. Onett was once one of the more powerful parimutuel lobbyists in Florida. He owned and operated Stonegate Farm, bred Eclipse champion sprinter Cherokee Run, and co-founded the Ocala Breeders' Sales Company. Sleeman is a British horsewoman who immigrated to Florida a quarter-century ago to work for Hobeau Farm.