06/14/2002 12:00AM

Top sires prominent in OBS sale

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The Ocala Breeders' Sales Company's final 2-year-old auction on the 2002 calendar gets under way Tuesday when the first of a cataloged 440 2 year-olds in training go on the block. The remaining 2-year-olds and 14 older horses in training sell on Wednesday. Start-ing time for both sessions is 11 a.m.

Florida's top three leading sires - Notebook, Montbrook, and Fortunate Prospect - are well represented in the sale.

Notebook, thanks to his graded stakes-winning 3-year-old Booklet, enjoys a comfortable lead as Florida's leading stallion. A 17-year-old son of Well Decorated, Notebook has 41 winners from 95 starters, and his get have earned $1.53 million. Booklet has earned $390,000, and is one of his sire's three stakes winners this year.

There are eight 2-year-olds by Notebook cataloged: five fillies, two colts, and one gelding. Among the fillies is catalogue number 211, consigned by Ocala Stud Farms, agent. She is a full sister to the graded stakes-winner Well Noted. Also consigned by Ocala Stud Farms, agent. is catalog number 405. A chestnut filly, and a first foal, she is out of multiple stakes winner Argos Appeal Montbrook, like Notebook, stands at Ocala Stud. The 12-year-old stallion by Buckaroo is one of the few prosperous stallions from the Buckpasser line in stud anywhere. The statistics show Montbrook has 76 runners with 35 winners and four stakes winners of six stakes races. His get have earned $1.35 million The leading Montbrook performer thus far this year is Giant Gentleman with earnings of roughly $150,000. Montbrook has three cataloged for the sale, and all are fillies.

The 21-year-old Fortunate Prospect, by Northern Prospect, has the most representatives of the top three in the sale, with 14. Fortunate Prospect is the sire of 51 winners from 102 starters. He is the sire of two stakes winners this year, including the remarkable 3-year-old filly Bold World, who has won six races in her career, all of them stakes. Fortunate Prospect's progeny earnings rank third among current leading Florida sires with $1.33 million. Farnsworth Farms, home of Fortunate Prospect, will take 12 of his get to Tuesday's auction. These include catalog number 1, a filly half-sister to two stakes winners and catalog number 188, a colt half-brother to the graded stakes winner Quintaro.

Tour d'Or, the 20-year-old grandson of Secretariat, ranks fourth among Florida's leading sires in 2002. An Irish Acres Farm stallion, he has 41 winners from 79 starters including two stakes winners. His get have earned more than $1 million this year. There is, however, no get of his in the sale.

Co-ranked in fifth place in the Florida stallion standings, with close to a million dollars in earnings and get in the sale, are Ocala Stud's Pentelicus and Marablue Farm's Tactical Advantage. Pentelicus is the sire of catalog number 262, a filly from a 100 percent producer. Tactical Advantage is the sire of catalog number 315, a filly, and catalog numbers 336 and 380, a pair of colts.

"The 2002 sales season has been better than expected," said Tom Ventura, the OBS general manager. "We began the 2-year-old sales season not knowing how much the impact of 9/11 would affect the Thoroughbred markets and then, too, the economy was slowing down. I think that much of the strength of the market comes from the strengthening of the purse structure. Better purses translate into better prices."