08/14/2006 11:00PM

Three Wonders quite a find as rookie sire

Jim Lisa
Snow Lady (right), winning the six-furlong Desert Vixen at Calder on Aug. 5, is a daughter of freshman sire Snow Ridge out of the Digression mare Lady Oxmoor.


There are always a few surprises among the freshmen stallions every year, and this year, Three Wonders, a son of the ubiquitous Storm Cat, is the revelation. Unlike so many Storm Cat sons, Three Wonder was not memorable as a racehorse. He did manage four wins from 30 starts, with one stakes victory, the Kent Breeders' Cup on the turf as a 3-year-old. He is a three-quarter brother to Illinois Derby winner Distilled (by Hennessy), and both are out of Wood of Binn, a Group 3 winner in France.

On Aug. 3, Three Wonders's son Holy Wonder won a six-furlong $30,000 maiden claiming race by 4 3/4 lengths as the 3-5 favorite. Holy Wonder is out of the Holy Bull mare Holy Saturday, and his third dam, Special Account, is a full sister to champion 2-year-old filly and superior broodmare Numbered Account and is the third dam of Heritage of Gold.

Two days later, two fillies by Three Wonders, Nola Star and Penelope Wonders, ran one-two in a one-mile maiden race. Nola Star was a 1-2 favorite, and she won by 16 1/2 lengths, with Penelope Wonders second at 15-1. Nola Star paid just $2.60 to win and the Three Wonders exacta came back $15.80.

Through Aug. 13, Three Wonders has seven winners and is fourth on the freshman sire list.


Yes It's True was a leading freshman stallion two years ago, and his juveniles continue to win sprints at a high clip. On Aug. 4, his son Yesbyjimminy won a six-furlong allowance by 3 3/4 lengths at 7-5. Yesbyjimminy is out of the Pentelicus mare Sisters Creek, and this female family produced Louis Quatorze and Nashua.

* Snow Ridge, another freshman sire, is off to a fast start. A son of the late Tabasco Cat, Snow Ridge was stakes-placed in the Sapling and Tyro at age 2, won the Kentucky Cup Sprint at 3, and blossomed at 4, winning the San Carlos, Palos Verdes, Maryland Breeders' Cup, and El Conejo handicaps at 4.

Snow Lady, by Snow Ridge and out of the Digression mare Lady Oxmoor, won the Desert Vixen division of the Florida Stallion Stakes on Aug. 5. Descending from a strong Greentree Farm female line, Lady Oxmoor is a half-sister to Florida Derby winner Croeso and stakes winner Maytide, who is the dam of Super May, Barbara Sue, Ide, and stakes-placed Highland Tide.

* Unbridled Sidney added another turf sprint stakes to her resume on Aug. 5, when she wired a salty group of fillies to win the Distaff Turf Sprint Championship Handicap by 3 1/2 lengths at 4-1. With her race record, high speed, and royal pedigree, the 5-year-old Unbridled Sidney will be a valuable broodmare when her racing days are over. By speed influence Unbridled's Song, she is out of the Danzig mare Baltic Sea, making her a half-sister to the stakes-winning sprinters Caller One and Prospect Bay.

Del Mar

Christopher Paasch is looking like Bob Baffert these days. His juveniles Prime Ruler and Principle Secret are the best-looking 2-year-old colts seen thus far this season. On Aug. 5, Prime Ruler, from the first crop of sprint champion Orientate, rallied from ninth and last to win a 5 1/2-furlong maiden race by 2 1/2 lengths at 5-1. Prime Ruler is out of the stakes-winning Afleet mare Swift Alliance, a half-sister to stakes winner Dancewiththebride. Paasch also trains Principle Secret, who was an impressive winner of the Best Pal Stakes on Aug. 13.

* One of the most dazzling 2-year-old fillies seen at Del Mar is Jump On In, who accelerated in the stretch to win her maiden debut by 5 1/4 lengths for trainer John Sadler. Jump On In was sent off at 4-5, and she will probably head to the Del Mar Debutante Stakes. From the first crop of Jump Start, Jump On In is out of the Fire Maker mare Lucky'n Loved, who is a half-sister to Cassidy, a stakes winner of $440,000 who traces directly to the foundation mare Grey Flight.


Who says Nick Zito doesn't win with first-time starters? Although he has won with only about 9 percent of his first-timers in the last 19 months, Zito has been on a roll with first-timers at Saratoga. He saddled Irish Ace, a 2-year-old colt by Grand Slam out of the Irish River mare Heartful Lady who on Aug. 5 scored a four-length debut win over maiden special weight company. Heartful Lady is from the female family that produced Sue Babe, the dam of Sir Harry Lewis, Sir Richard Lewis, and Champagne Babe, the dam of Champagneforashley.

On Aug. 12, C P West, a 2-year-old colt by Came Home out of the Dynaformer mare Queen's Legend, was another first-out winner for Zito, paying $8.20.

And on Aug. 13, Ruby Crown, a 2-year-old filly by Awesome Again, became the latest debut winner for Zito when she defeated Todd Pletcher's favored Awesome Ashley in a six-furlong maiden. Ruby Crown is out of the Distinctive Pro mare Brandy Rose, a half-sister to 1994 Horse of the Year Holy Bull.