By Frances J. Karon
Candy Ride has two significant, Kentucky-based G1-winning sons — Gun Runner and Mastery — with first foals arriving in 2019. Or three significant sons, even, if you consider that Unified was a G1-placed multiple GSW. So you can imagine that the farms that stand these young stallions — Three Chimneys (Gun Runner, $70,000 stud fee this year), Claiborne (Mastery, $25,000), and Lane’s End (Unified, $10,000, who along with Twirling Candy stands next to his sire Candy Ride, who is a tremendous bargain at $80,000) — are celebrating the success of Twirling Candy in anticipation of what their young stallions might do.
On Friday’s Kentucky Oaks undercard, with all eyes on Churchill Downs, Twirling Candy’s Concrete Rose went off as the distant second choice in the G3 Edgewood S. at a mile-and-a-sixteenth on the grass. Undefeated Newspaperofrecord was the all-but-unbeatable, $0.20-to-1 favorite to win her first start since taking down the G1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf, also at Churchill, by 6 3/4 lengths in November. The Bromagen family’s Ashbrook Farm and BBN Racing’s Concrete Rose blew by Newspaperofrecord in the stretch, a drawing-away 3 3/4 lengths ahead at the wire. She’s now the winner of four of five starts, with her lone loss an eighth in Newspaperofrecord’s Breeders’ Cup race.
The dark bay or brown 3yo filly was a $61,000 post-sale purchase by David Ingordo at the Fasig-Tipton Midlantic 2yos-in-training sale last May, where she breezed an eighth in 10.2, from fledgling consignor White Pine Thoroughbreds. She was conceived when her sire stood for $10,000 (he’s now $25,000), and she’s the third and last foal, and only winner, from the winning mare Solerina (Powerscourt), whose own dam produced two winners from six named foals. Farther back, it’s a solid family — the third dam produced turf G2SW Lovers Knot (Groom Dancer), and the stakes-winning fourth dam Donna Inez (Herbager) was granddam of G3SW Momentum (Nureyev) and a half-sister to Kentucky Derby winner Ferdinand (Nijinsky II).
Concrete Rose is now a MGSW of a G2 and a pair of G3s with earnings of $418,650, and she is one of three GSWs for her sire in 2019, after G1SW Gift Box (Unbridled’s Song) and G3SW Law Abidin Citizen (Tale of the Cat). Morticia (Mr. Greeley), who like Concrete Rose is trained by Rusty Arnold, won the Giant’s Causeway on the turf at Keeneland last month and placed second in a black-type race at Churchill the day before Concrete Rose’s win.
Twirling Candy (Chester House) was a G1 winner on the dirt (Malibu, setting a track record of 1:19 3/5 for seven furlongs) and a G2 winner on turf (Del Mar Derby) and all-weather (Californian), so it feels right that his GSWs act on dirt (G1SWs Finley’sluckycharm and Gift Box; G2SW Danzing Candy) and turf (G2SW Concrete Rose; G3SWs Law Abidin Citizen and Morticia).
So far, Twirling Candy has hit big with mares carrying strains of Fappiano (Gift Box-G1; Finley’sluckycharm-G1 — inbred 4×3 to Candy Ride’s grandsire Cryptoclearance; and Danzing Candy-G2) and Storm Cat. Storm Cat is responsible for the damsires of seven of Twirling Candy’s 16 SWs; an eighth has a second dam by Storm Cat. Only one of his six GSWs, and coincidentally that one is Concrete Rose, doesn’t have either the Fappiano or Storm Cat sire line through their first or second dams. Essentially, Twirling Candy has been a near-clone of Candy Ride with what has worked for him. Candy Ride has 13 GSWs – such as champion Shared Belief and G2SW Liora, who was second in Friday’s Kentucky Oaks – out of Storm Cat-line mares and four GSWs out of Fappiano-line mares, including 2018 G1SWs Separationofpowers and Leofric, plus additional GSWs with Fappiano on the bottom side of their pedigrees.
The only superb Candy Ride nick that has not yet been notably effective, but is still well worth trying, with Twirling Candy is Seattle Slew, the male line of the dams of seven of Candy Ride’s GSWs (champion Game Winner and Mastery among them).
For an example of how lethal Candy Ride can be when presented with the right mixture of genes, look no further than Gun Runner, whose dam is a daughter of Giant’s Causeway (Storm Cat) and second dam by Quiet American (Fappiano). Another name found twice in Gun Runner that has been duplicated through dams of other SWs by Candy Ride and sons Sidney’s Candy, Misremembered, and Twirling Candy is Blushing Groom.
What does all of this mean for Gun Runner (female family of Saint Liam, sire of HOTY Havre de Grace), Mastery (dam by Old Trieste; family of sires Jump Start and Miswaki), Unified (dam by Dixie Union; family of Dehere), and all the other current and future Candy Ride sons (like Game Winner) in the breeding shed? Well, Twirling Candy’s G1 stakes-winning crop-mate Sidney’s Candy (now at stud in Turkey) is a reminder that there is no promise of success, of course, but with a clear pattern established by Twirling Candy of how to breed sons of Candy Ride, it gives a lot of hope that following the formula that has worked for Candy Ride and Twirling Candy will yield optimal results. Even in the case of Gun Runner and Mastery, who already have Storm Cat (who will be in the fourth generation of their foals), that sire will be back far enough that people need not be shy of reintroducing more of that bloodline.
The way things have been going for Candy Ride and Twirling Candy, there’s every indication that it’s a ride that will keep going for years to come.