11/10/2006 12:00AM

State's pride auctioned bing, bang, boom


Maryland-bred Grade 1 winner and Grade 1 producer Hookedonthefeelin made headlines last week, selling for $2.9 million at the Fasig-Tipton Kentucky November selected mixed sale last Sunday afternoon.

The price equals the second-highest for a Maryland-bred broodmare at public auction. Hookedonthefeelin's sale was the highlight of an eventful two days in which Maryland-bred champions went through sales rings in Kentucky.

Also selling at Fasig-Tipton were last year's statebred champion 2-year-old filly, Celestial Legend, and 1998 champion 2-year-old filly Magic Broad, from the same crop as Hookedonthefeelin. On Monday, the opening day of Keeneland's massive November breeding stock sale, 2004 Maryland-bred champion 3-year-old filly He Loves Me was sold. Rarely has so much Maryland pride been auctioned off in such rapid succession.

Hookedonthefeelin, a 10-year-old mare bred by a partnership of Country Life Farm, Allison M. Flaherty, and Helen Wells, represents four generations of Maryland breeding. Both her sire, Citidancer, and broodmare sire, Allen's Prospect, stood at Country Life Farm their entire stud careers. Her second dam, Maryland-bred Jovial Joy, was by longtime Maryland leading sire Rollicking. And her great-granddam, Maryland-bred Nordic Joy, was conceived while her sire, Northern Jove, stood in Maryland.

But Hookedonthefeelin hit the road as a weanling, selling for $38,000 at the Fasig-Tipton Midlantic December mixed sale. She reappeared at the Keeneland September yearling sale, where trainer Bob Baffert purchased her for $110,000 on behalf of Mike Pegram.

For Pegram, Hookedonthefeelin was a graded stakes winner at 2, won the Grade 1 La Brea Stakes at 3, and by the time she retired early in her 5-year-old season had accounted for 10 stakes wins or placings, and earned $488,554. She was named Maryland-bred champion filly at 3 and champion older mare at 4.

Hustled off to be bred to Pegram's classic winner Real Quiet, Hookedonthefeelin produced as her first foal Pussycat Doll, the winner of the 2005 La Brea Stakes who then added a victory in the Grade 1 Humana Distaff Handicap this spring. Four years ago, Pegram sold Hookedonthefeelin for $1,525,000 at the Keeneland November sale, where she was purchased by ClassicStar.

The third-highest price at this year's Fasig-Tipton sale, Hookedonthefeelin, in foal to Distorted Humor, was sold as part of the ClassicStar dispersal. Jess Jackson's Stonestreet Thoroughbred Holdings LLC was the buyer. Only twice in history had a Maryland-bred broodmare brought as much - Avum, a half-sister (by Umbrella Fella) to champion Lord Avie, and in foal to Spectacular Bid, sold for $3.2 million at the 1983 Keeneland November sale; and Retrospective (by Easy Goer), a half-sister to Broad Brush in foal to Deputy Minister, sold for $2.9 million at the 1999 Keeneland November sale.

The youngest of this year's Maryland-bred champions offered was 3-year-old Celestial Legend, who sold as a broodmare prospect for $235,000 to Paragon Farms LLC. A daughter of City Zip, she had last started in May, won 6 of her 9 career starts, and earned $213,730. She was bred by William Fitzgibbons Sr. and David H. Wade, who sold her for $45,000 at the Fasig-Tipton Kentucky July yearling sale to Richard Schultz and David Menard, who campaigned her throughout her career.

Magic Broad, sold in foal to Purge, was purchased by Thomas Bachman for $160,000. Magic Broad, a daughter of Broad Brush who was bred and campaigned by Robert E. Meyerhoff (who also bred Retrospective), won the Grade 3 Selima Stakes during her championship season. A year-older full sister to Meyerhoff's Gradeo1 winner Include, Magic Broad was sold privately by her breeder in 2002, and was a part of the ClassicStar dispersal.

He Loves Me, a daughter of Not for Love bred by Eddie and Binnie Houghton in the name of their Buckingham Farm, earned her championship title by winning five stakes and placing second in the Grade 1 Gazelle Handicap in 2004. The Houghtons sold He Loves Me privately early in 2005 to Peter Karches. An earner of $355,698, He Loves Me - carrying her first foal (by Unbridled's Song) - was purchased by James T. Scatuorchio for $275,000.