The following appeared in The Daily Racing Form January 22nd and was written by Nicole Russo. Stellar Wind will compete in Saturday’s (Jan. 27) $16 Million Pegasus World Cup At Gulfstream Park. Wagering will be available at all 3 Virginia Bets OTBs — at Ponies & Pints and Breakers Sports Grille in Richmond, and at Buckets Bar & Grill in Chesapeake. Advance betting on Gulfstream’s entire Saturday card will be available all day and evening on Friday. Virginia residents can also bet via four on line partner companies — TVG.com, Xpressbet.com, Twinspires.com and NYRABets.com.
There are few downsides to having a seasoned champion walk into a trainer’s barn in racing form. But trainer Chad Brown has just one regret about his association with Stellar Wind.
“The most disappointing thing is only having her for one start,” Brown told Gulfstream Park publicity. “We’ll try to make the most of that one start.”
Stellar Wind was purchased for a sale-topping $6 million by the Coolmore partnership at the Keeneland November breeding stock sale as a mate for Triple Crown winner American Pharoah, who is based at the international outfit’s Ashford Stud in Kentucky. First, though, she will get the opportunity to recoup some of the investment in that one start for Brown, the $16 million Pegasus World Cup on Saturday. She will be the first female to start in the Pegasus, now in its second year.
“She came into us in really good shape to begin with,” Brown said of Stellar Wind, trained for the majority of her career by John Sadler. “It’s a tall order. It’s going to be a really, really hard race, as it should be. . . . [But] it is a horse race. Anything could happen.”
Stellar Wind, a daughter of Curlin, has won nine graded stakes, six of those Grade 1 events, and was honored with the Eclipse Award as champion 3-year-old female of 2015. Her pedigree also attracted Coolmore, as she is from the immediate family of the dams of Grade 1 winners Mor Spirit and Great Hunter, and shares common ancestry with multiple stakes producer Life Happened, the dam of champion Tepin.
“She’s a very good-looking mare,” Coolmore’s M.V. Magnier said after making the purchase. “She’s a champion. Most of her life, she was brilliant. Let’s hope we can do a good a good job with her, and she’s as good as a broodmare.”
Stellar Wind will be among the highlights of American Pharoah’s third Northern Hemisphere book. Other mares already committed to the Pioneerof the Nile horse include Grade 2 winner Miss Sky Warrior; Grade 1-placed stakes winner Indy Groove and her Grade 3-placed daughter Emphatically; and Spring Eclipse, the dam of stakes winner Bet She Wins.
American Pharoah has been among the most active stallions in North America in his first two seasons, covering 208 mares in 2016 and 214 in 2017 according to The Jockey Club’s Report of Mares Bred. The stallion is averaging $467,308 from 13 members of his first crop sold at public auction late last year and early this year.