07/21/2005 11:00PM

War's Prospect far exceeds expectations


New Jersey-based trainer Bill Anderson has a warrior on his hands.

Anderson's 4-year-old gelding War's Prospect, New Jersey's champion 3-year-old male of 2004, is well on his way to another statebred title after his performance in the Colts Neck Handicap on July 17 at Monmouth Park.

War's Prospect races for WAR Stable, a partnership of Richard Woll, Anderson, and Robert and Steve Ranuro, whose initials spell out their stable name.

War's Prospect set every fraction en route to a 3 1/2-length score in the Colts Neck to earn his second stakes win in his past four starts. Both victories came at six furlongs in New Jersey-bred company.

War's Prospect, who has now earned $292,408, was purchased by Anderson from breeder John Perrotta as a 2-year-old. At the time, Anderson had no idea that he was buying perhaps the best horse he has had in his barn during the 26 years he has been stabled at Monmouth. But Anderson quickly uncovered War's Prospect's potential.

War's Prospect won his division of the New Jersey Futurity at 2, and developed further at 3, winning or placing in five stakes, including the unrestricted Rumson Stakes at Monmouth, in which he recorded a Beyer Speed Figure of 103. Small chips were discovered in both knees after his victory in Monmouth's Pappa Riccio Stakes last August, and War's Prospect was given plenty of time to recover from surgery. He has returned full force this season.

"War's Prospect has won twice going long, but he's really tough sprinting," said Anderson. "The thing that gives him his edge is that he has a lot of initial speed, but he's not headstrong. He will get off the bit and relax, even though he's going fast."

War's Prospect has definitely exceeded the expectations of his breeder, Perrotta. "When you're breeding for the regional market, you just hope to get a racehorse," said Perrotta. "If you get to the allowance ranks, you know you will do fine. This horse has gone way beyond that."

Perrotta, a New Jersey native who is co-host of the Sirius satellite radio show Talking Horses based in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., purchased War's Prospect's dam, Icy Reality (by Proper Reality), for $35,000 in foal to Miner's Mark at the 1997 Keeneland November sale. Icy Reality won once and earned slightly more than $5,000 on the racetrack, but she is from a long-distinguished family of Maryland-bred runners. Her dam, Icy Dial (Banderilla-Cool Control, by Solo Landing), was a multiple stakes winner bred by Mrs. Robert A. Leonard. Icy Dial's granddam, Chilly Wind (by John William), was the first foal from Leonard's foundation producer Martinetta (by Martins Rullah), whose five stakes winners included longtime leading Maryland sire Rollicking.

Icy Reality's first three foals, all bred and sold at auction by Perrotta, included two stakes-placed runners and one earner of more than $100,000. Then came War's Prospect (by Lion Cavern). Perrotta subsequently sold the mare.

Perrotta typically breeds and races under the banner of Star Stable, and maintains a band of eight to 10 broodmares, primarily in Kentucky. A few of his mares are boarded at Joe and Karen Jennings's Walnford Stud in Allentown, N.J. Perrotta owns shares in Walnford stallion Defrere, who leads the New Jersey sires list. He is the sole owner of the stallion Bugatti Reef, standing at Walnford.

Perrotta honed his skill at arranging matings during his career as manager of Robert Brennan's once-powerful Due Process Stables. Perrotta managed the Due Process operations in Colts Neck, N.J., Lexington, Ky., and Ocala, Fla., from 1981 until the holdings were dispersed in 1995 and 1996. During that time he was instrumental in planning the matings that led to champions Dehere and Open Mind, and 45 additional stakes winners. For his own account, Perrotta was co-breeder of 1997 Belmont Stakes winner Touch Gold.