11/10/2017 6:03PM

Tapit's stud fee unchanged for 2018

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Barbara D. Livingston
Tapit's book will be limited to 125 mares in 2018.

Tapit will continue to stand for an advertised fee of $300,000 in 2018, continuing his reign as the most expensive stallion in North America.

The 16-year-old son of Pulpit stands at Gainesway Farm in Lexington, Ky., and has maintained his $300,000 fee since the 2015 season. He is followed on the list of North America's most expensive sires by War Front and Medaglia d'Oro, who will command fees of $250,000 at Claiborne and Darley, respectively.

Tapit set a single-season progeny earnings record for a North American sire in 2014, when he led the general sires list for the first of three consecutive years with earnings of $16,813,536. He shattered his own record the next two seasons, bankrolling $18,327,691 in 2015 and $19,245,198 in 2016.

Tapit's career highlights include siring three winners of the Belmont Stakes in Tonalist (2014), Creator (2016), and Tapwrit (2017). In that span, he also finished second with Frosted (2015) and third with Lani (2016). Tapit is the only sire in the modern era to be represented by three Belmont Stakes winners – and one of just five stallions to sire three or more winners of the oldest American classic.

He has covered books of 148, 125, and 127 mares in the past three seasons at his $300,000 fee, according to The Jockey Club's Report of Mares Bred, and his book will be limited to 125 mares in 2018. His first yearlings conceived on this fee came to the ring this year, and he averaged a staggering $950,000 for his 17 yearlings sold at Keeneland September. He accounted for the three most expensive yearlings of the auction – a $2.7 million full sister to Grade 1 winner Cupid, a $2.6 million colt from the family of champion Saint Liam and Grade 1 winner Gun Runner, and a $2.5 million colt out of Grade 1 winner Tiz Miz Sue.

Gainesway stallion Empire Maker, who was repatriated from Japan prior to the 2016 breeding season, will stand for a fee of $85,000, unchanged from his 2017 level. The Belmont Stakes winner is responsible for the sires of both American Pharoah and Always Dreaming.

Multiple graded stakes winner Bird Song is the addition to the Gainesway roster, debuting for a fee of $5,000. The roster is rounded out by Tapizar at $12,500, Anchor Down and Karakontie at $10,000, Afleet Alex at $8,500, To Honor and Serve at $7,500, and Birdstone at $5,000.