Vinery legend More Than Ready landed a Group 2 in Kentucky just hours before the first of his yearlings went under the hammer at the Inglis Australian Easter Sale on Monday.
More Than Ready’s opening session colt from Calming Influence (Lot 62) made $350,000 to the bid of Carmel Size. “Thrilled to add him to the team,” Size said. “Will have the best of everything in my care.”
Vendor Steve Jostlear of Ampulla Lodge said the colt was popular during inspections. “He’s got the walk, the look, he’s beautiful. He’s by a proven sire. More Than Ready does a good job all around the world and he’s becoming a good broodmare sire and he’s becoming a good sire of sires, so he’s got it all.”
Meanwhile, unbeaten More Than Ready filly Rushing Fall is the early favourite for a USA 3YO Eclipse Award after a first-up victory at Keeneland on Sunday.
Employing a massive late kick in the Appalachian Stakes Gr.2 over 1600m, she drew clear from imported European fillies Thewayiam (Fr) and Goodthingstaketime (Ire) in a performance that pleased trainer Chad Brown.
“She only had five works but I thought she could overcome it. She didn’t need to be 100% ready to deliver.”
Rushing Fall (3f More Than Ready – Autumnal by Forestry) had won a Belmont juvenile maiden on debut in September before stepping up for another convincing display in the Jessamine Stakes Gr.3 at Keeneland. She clinched a fourth Breeders’ Cup title for More Than Ready with a decisive victory in the BC Juvenile Fillies Gr.1 at Del Mar in November.
The 2YO Eclipse Award went to Caledonia Road but jockey Javier Castellano reckons Rushing Fall won’t takes a back seat to anyone in 2018. He took advantage of the favourite’s sharp break to sit fourth on yielding turf in the Appalachian.
“I didn’t expect her to be too close to the pace but the way the race unfolded, I took it from there. She’s one of the best fillies I’ve ridden in my career.”
Rushing Fall is the third Appalachian winner trained by Brown. “It’s another big relief and a nice feeling, because there is a little extra pressure when they are undefeated,” he said. “You hate to spoil that. It’s hard to do but it’s a testament to her talent.”
Brown’s first two winners set a high standard – future champion turf mares Dayatthespa (2012) and Lady Eli (2015). His latest star will be set for the Belmont Oaks Gr.1 over 1700m on July 7.