THE first few days of the season proved to a triumphant one for Vinery’s flagship sire More Than Ready here and abroad, on and off the racetrack.
First came the news that the stallion’s 8-time Group 1 winner More Joyous had delivered a filly (first) foal by the unbeaten world champion galloper Frankel.
More Than Ready has fast become a `hot tip’ for future Champion Broodmare Sire honours with some stunning output despite the young age of his brood-daughters.
Already those daughters have delivered 5 stakeswinners and 9 stakesplaced from just 124 starters in Australia/New Zealand including the 2013 Group 1 winners Miracles of Life, Atlante and Rebel Dane as well as the reigning Magic Millions winner, Unencumbered (by Testa Rossa).
At the same as More Joyous’ `baby news’, More Than Ready’s Grade 1 winning son, the Vinery USA owned Regally Ready, powered to a machine-like 12-lens win in the $100,000 West Virginia House of Delegates Speaker Cup (1m 70y).
The seven-year-old Regally Ready has won 14 of his 35 starts with earnings of nearly $1.5m due in no small part to his 2011 Grade 1 Nearctic Stakes (6f or 1200m) triumph at Woodbine in Canada.
He also won the Grade 2 Breeder’s Cup Turf Sprint (5 furlongs or abt. 1000m) at Churchill Downs at the same meet where More Than Ready 2YO’s Pluck and More Than Real scooped the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf features.
Rounding out More Than Ready’s booming start to the new racing and breeding year was the return to the winner’s stall for Phelan Ready, one of his sire’s two Golden Slipper winners.
The Jason McLachlan trained gelding had famously gone winless since he joined Dance Hero as the only horse to claim the Magic Millions/Golden Slipper double but had still been able to amass a total of $478,250 post his Rosehill glory.
More Than Ready’s on-going success – his stakeswinners tally is at 129 and counting – augurs well for the long term of his replica son Pluck who is about to embark on his third season at stud at Vinery having served 105 mares in each of his first two seasons.
“More Than Ready will always be one of my favourite horses. He was one of, if the first really good horse that I trained. He was such a talented with a great disposition and to see him to go on and down well as a sire, not only here but in Australia, he’s a real phenomenon,” says Hall of Fame Trainer Todd Pletcher.
“(Pluck) physically is almost a clone of More Than Ready himself. He’s almost black in colour (with) a very similar head, if you looked at pictures of the two as two-year-olds, the similarities are amazing.”