Saturday, January 12, 2013

Hunter's January Highlights: Keertana and Snow Top Mountain

Snow Top Mountain (left) with Four Star's own, and Brownwood advisor, Tony Lacy and Keertana, held by Brownwood manager Darrell Curry.  The half-sisters sold for $950,000 and $1,000,000, respectively.
It has been an unseasonably warm January, which is always appreciated during horse sales, when buyers, consignors, and sales help spend eight-to-twelve hours working outside. Still, we were too busy showing horses to have much time to either complain about or enjoy the weather.

Tony playing with Snow Top Mountain while she waited to be inspected.
Following the passing of Ms. Barbara Hunter of Brownwood Farm in November, Four Star Sales’ Keeneland January consignment included Hunter’s multiple Grade 3-winning, Tom Proctor-trained half-sisters Keertana (who aborted her first foal, a colt by Arch, in December) and Snow Top Mountain (carrying her first foal, by Blame), as well as a yearling Hard Spun filly out of Whitefish (a half-sister to Keertana and Snow Top Mountain).

[I posted a blog from a visit to Keertana and Snow Top Mountain and their dam Motokiks at Brownwood in July.]

Keertana getting tidied up for a potential purchaser.
Having these two standout mares and a number of good foals (I especially liked our fillies by Hard Spun, Harlan’s Holiday, Tale of Ekati, and Flatter) in the barn kept us on our feet -- to the tune of 902 shows on our first day at Keeneland. Yep...nine hundred and two shows in one day.

The Brownwood legacy, based on more than half a century of building upon Hunter’s founding female families (with no infusion of new blood) and breeding to mostly modest stallions -- selling the colts and keeping the fillies -- produced the top two most sought-after broodmares at this sale, both fourth-generation homebreds. Millionaire Keertana sold to Craig Bandoroff as agent for $1,000,000. A short while later, Snow Top Mountain found a new home at Virginia’s Audley Farm on a final bid of $950,000 (making her the second most expensive broodmare in the Keeneland January catalogue). The Hard Spun yearling also sold well, going to chef and restaurateur Bobby Flay for $140,000. (Perhaps he liked her dam’s name, Whitefish?)

The $140,000 Hard Spun - Whitefish filly whose dam is a half-sister to Keertana and Snow Top Mountain.
Before and after the five-day sales stretch at Keeneland, I was able to attend a few open houses at stud farms -- a rare treat to visit stallions, including two that Four Star had sold as youngsters: champion Uncle Mo (sold as a yearling) and Grade 2 winner Munnings (led out unsold as a weanling, sold as a yearling); and one, Malibu Moon, I had known as a foal during my time at Walmac Farm.

Below are some of the photos from those visits:

Darley's Hard Spun, sire of the Whitefish filly.
Australian Horse of the Year Lonhro, at Darley. (I love this gorgeous horse.)
Lonhro floats over the ground when he moves.
Classic winner and leading sire A.P. Indy, now a 24-year-old pensioner at Lane's End Farm.
A.P. Indy's son Malibu Moon at Spendthrift.
Another son of A.P. Indy: champion Bernardini at Darley.
Bernardini's Grade 1-winning son Stay Thirsty at Ashford.
A.P. Indy's champion great-grandson Hansen (by Tapit) at Ashford.
2000 Horse of the Year Tiznow at WinStar.
WinStar's Colonel John, a Grade 1 winner by Tiznow.
Gemologist, another Grade 1 winner by Tiznow at WinStar.
Medaglia d'Oro (by El Prado), sire of 2009 Horse of the Year Rachel Alexandra, at Darley.
El Prado's Grade 1-winning son Paddy O'Prado at Spendthrift.
Darley's Street Cry, sire of 2010 Horse of the Year Zenyatta.
Uncle Mo, 2010 champion 2-year-old, at Ashford.


  1. LOVE the photos, FJK!! Lonhro is SUCH a gorgeous fellow, and the dapple on Bernardini is glorious :) What fun!

  2. Medaglia d'Oro has his own wind machine fan at all times, huh? He always looks so dashing!