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The stallion barn at Norse Ridge Farm
On Saturday January 23, Norse Ridge Farm in King City, Ontario hosted its annual Stallion Open House. Located 40 minutes from Woodbine, the facility features a 5/8 mile training track and five barns, accommodating weanlings and yearlings, horses in training, broodmares, horses with special-care needs, as well as the stallions. For the 2010 season, Norse Ridge is home to seven Thoroughbred stallions (two of which are also AQHA registered), and two Quarter Horse stallions. Because of the cold weather outside, the stallions were shown inside the main stallion barn. Bernard McCormack of Cara Bloodstock hosted the proceedings, presenting each stallion and giving details of the stallion's and his offsprings' on-track performance as well as what bloodlines would cross well with the subject.
We also visited Gardiner Farm a week later.
Because the stallions were shown inside in rather close quarters with low lights, we were not able to get good photos of everyone but I did the best I could considering the circumstances.
Rebellion is an English-bred son of Mozart out of Lahib mare Last Resort. After finishing in the money in 7 of his 8 starts in England, he was purchased by current owners Hickory Tree Stable and sent to trainer Graham Motion. He won the Commonwealth(G2) at Keeneland and the Ack Ack(G3) at Hollywood, retiring with 7 wins, 5 seconds, and 5 thirds in 26 starts, earning $816,277. In his first year at stud, he stands for a fee of $3,500.
Rebellion after finishing second the 2008 Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile
Rebellion works out before the 2007 Breeders' Cup
Alumni Hall raced for Lane's End Farm, winning two Grade 3 events at Keeneland, retiring in 2008 with 9 wins, 5 seconds, and 3 thirds in 29 starts, earning $747,756. He won or placed in 11 stakes races, 8 graded, at 8 different racetracks. He is by leading stallion and sire-of-sires A.P. Indy out of the Alydar mare Private Status, making him a full brother to Kentucky Oaks winner Secret Status. His first foals will be 2-year-olds this year. He stands for a fee of $3,500.
Alumni Hall in the post parade for the 2005 William Donald Schaefer Handicap
Best of the Bests is an Irish-bred son of Machiavellian out of the Darshan mare Sueboog. He raced for Godolphin, retiring in 2003 with a record of 5 wins, 1 second, and 6 thirds in 19 starts, earning $684,728, including a Group 1 win in the Prix d'Ispahan in France and two third-place finishes in the Irish Champion Stakes, defeated by stars such as Giant's Causeway and Grandera. Of his 160 named foals from his first 4 crops, 119 started and 58 have won, including 2 stakes winners. He stands for a fee of $2,500.
Megas Vukefalos is a Canadian-bred son of Cool Victor out of the Dom Alaric mare Bold Debra. He raced for owner Steve Stavro until his 8-year-old season, with 11 wins, 10 seconds, and 15 thirds in 72 starts, earning $836,696. He won 6 stakes races including the Nearctic, the Plate Trial, and the Jacques Cartier. When retired in 2001, he was originally a teaser stallion but proved himself with the few foals he did have. Of his 14 names foaled from 6 crops, 9 have started and 7 have won. He stands for a fee of $1,500, and can sire both Thoroughbreds and Quarter Horses.
My Way Only is a Canadian-bred son of Septieme Ciel out of Timeless Moment mare Timeless Kisses. On the track he only made 3 starts, winning 2, both on the turf, earning $65,100. Retiring to stud duty, he has had 12 named foals in 4 crops, of which 7 have starts and 4 have won, including Guipago who won the Vice Regent Stakes and was second in the 2009 Breeders' Stakes. He stands for a fee of $2,000.
Paynes Bay was bred and raced by Eugene Melnyk, who retains ownership of this son of Mr. Prospector out of Seattle Slew mare Embellished. Racing through his 5-year-old season, he started 18 times, with 2 wins, 3 seconds, and 4 thirds earning $107,990. At stud he has sired 89 named foals, of which 57 started, with 33 winners, his best runners so far being stakes-placed Grazettes Landing and Commander Bay. He stands for a fee of $2,500, and can sire both Thoroughbreds and Quarter Horses.
Weather Warning raced only 2 seasons, with 3 wins, 1 second, and 2 thirds in 11 starts, earning $128,687, including a win in the Manitoba Derby and a third place finish in the Hansel Stakes, both in his 3-year-old season. His first foals are yearlings in 2010. The son of Storm Cat out of Carson City mare and Oak Leaf (G1) winner City Band stands for a fee of $3,500.
Weather Warning in the post parade for the 2007 Hansel Stakes
Left: Black Moons Arising is a son of First Down Dash out of Jonny Apollo mare Cindio. He is a full brother to champion Mare A Sigh. He raced through his 6-year-old season, starting 22 times with 4 wins, 2 seconds, and 3 thirds with earnings of $8,642. He has sired 70% winners/starters including Touched by the Moon, Rising Up The Charts, and stakes-placed Blacks Dimples. He stands for a fee of $1,500.
Right: DM Selexus is a full brother to World Champion DM Shicago. He raced 7 times with just 1 win, but his brother earned $1.87 million on the track. The son of Separatist out of Special Leader mare Leading Sensation is under lease to Norse Ridge by JEH Stallion Station in Texas and stands for a fee of $1,500.
Yearlings frolic in the snow at Norse Ridge Farm while some broodmares watch in the distance.
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