04/17/2003 12:00AM

Peace Rules's family tree has colorful history

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LEXINGTON, Ky. - Peace Rules won the Grade 1 Blue Grass Stakes at Keeneland and established himself as trainer Bobby Frankel's second contender for the Kentucky Derby. Although not by a Derby winner, as is race favorite Empire Maker, Peace Rules has numerous pedigree connections to the classic at Churchill Downs. His most intriguing connection to sports history comes through his sire, Jules, who is named for Jules Fink.

Fink was one of the most successful and innovative handicappers of his time, and his group of associates was known as the Speed Boys. Fink came to know the breeders of Jules through trainer Woody Stephens, according to Reynolds Bell Jr., principal of Reynolds Bell Jr. Thoroughbred Services and consultant to the Jayeff B Stables of Richard Santulli and George Prussin.

Bell said, "Jules Fink would chart races and make trip notes, which weren't available at that time, and he became friends with Mr. Santulli because they both loved to handicap."

They even became partners in racehorses.

Bell noted that "Jayeff B Stables originated from a partnership that Mr. Santulli had with Jules Fink. The 'Jay' and 'Eff' were his initials, and the 'B' marked it as his second stable, as he already had a stable with Woody."

Out of this sporting partnership came a deep regard for Fink. "Jayeff B bred Jules and raced him," Bell said. "Mr. Santulli liked this colt a lot and named him for Jules Fink. The colt's sire, Forty Niner, was a horse that Mr. Santulli thought highly of, and he had purchased the dam, Bonita Francita, at auction and raced her."

By champion Devil's Bag, Bonita Francita was out of the Hoist the Flag mare Raise the Standard, a half-sister to Northern Dancer. As is typical of the families acquired by Jayeff B, the relations of Jules showed wall-to-wall quality.

Raise the Standard's best daughter was the Halo mare Coup de Folie, who produced champion Machiavellian and four other stakes winners. Bonita Francita is the dam of three stakes winners, including Jules and Group 1 winner Orpen, and the mare's first offspring, the Private Account mare Black Penny, already has produced a French 1000 Guineas winner, Bluemamba (by Kingmambo).

Jules was clearly a colt who brought forth great expectations, and the colt showed that he was a good juvenile in 1996, when he won the Grade 3 Nashua and ran second in the Remsen and Cowdin. For a time, he appeared to be a classic candidate, but he fell ill in Florida. After getting back to the races, Jules ran fifth in the Blue Grass, won by Pulpit, and thereafter he was matched against lesser company. Jules won the Long Branch at Monmouth, but later at 3 he was injured and retired to stud.

Since his race record didn't quite justify a place among the heavy hitters in Kentucky, Jules went to Arthur Appleton's Bridlewood Farm in Florida. Bell said that "we positioned him in the region we thought he would do best, and we're excited to see that he came up with a horse of this caliber" in Peace Rules.

Upon Jules's retirement, Jayeff B sold part of Jules to Bridlewood Farm and part to Julio Bozano's Santa Maria de Araras, and Jules shuttled back and forth between Florida and Brazil for three years. Bell recalled that "initially he was popular in Florida, but like a lot of other young horses, if you don't do it right now, you have to move along."

As a result, the Northern Hemisphere partners sold their interest in Jules to Santa Maria de Araras in the fall of last year. At the time, the first foals by Jules were 3, and Peace Rules is from his sire's second crop. At the time of his sale to South America last fall, Jules, now the sire of 10 stakes winners worldwide, was already beginning to experience the success in Brazil that he lately has found in the U.S. His leading runner in the Southern Hemisphere is Group 1 winner Must be Flying.

Peace Rules, out of the Hold Your Peace mare Hold to Fashion, sold for $35,000 last year at the Ocala Breeders' Sales Company's March sale of 2-year-olds in training, then was resold to Edmund Gann privately.