Experienced stallions managers will tell you that a stallion can either “turn the switch” on as a sire, or he can’t. It was evident early on with his 2-year-olds that Candy Ride, an Argentine import with tremendous racing ability, had what it takes to turn the switch to the on position. He reminded everyone again this weekend when Bob Baffert’s homebred Misremembered won the Grade 1 Santa Anita Handicap to become his third first-crop Grade 1 winner!
Candy Ride started off at John Sikura’s Hill ‘n’ Dale for a $10,000 fee, and he stands this year at Lane’s End for $25,000. John was sick to lose the sire, especially as he’d also started off Medaglia d’Oro at the same time as Candy Ride, but he can take the credit for what the horse has accomplished at a bargain stud fee. To date, Candy Ride has 8 black type winners, 6 Graded stakes winners, and three Grade 1 winners, with his oldest foals only 4. The stallion had several classic prospects with his first crop of 3-year-olds last year, and he has another early season colt of promise in Sidney’s Candy, winner of the Grade 2 San Vicente Stakes. These are phenomenal statistics for basically two seasons of racing.
Argentine sires have not generally fared well in North America, with the exception of Forli and Lord at War, so it’s not surprising that Candy Ride actually shares racing characteristics with the two. I wrote about this in a Jan. 31, 2009, post, and I’m going to reproduce some of what I said from it. You can read the original in its entirety here. About their similar racing profiles, I wrote:
“It’s notable, then, that Candy Ride shares some common traits with Forli and Lord at War. For one, all three were absolutely top-class racehorses in Argentina at 3 – undefeated, in fact — and stakes winners in the US as older horses. All three could be described as outstanding milers, too, although they won at farther distances on class.
“Each dominated the competition in Argentina. Forli won his three races at 2 by margins of 12, 17, and 5 lengths. At 3, Forli won Argentina’s “quadruple crown,” consisting of the Guineas equivalent, which he won by 12 lengths, the Derby, the Gran Premio Jockey Club, and the Pellegrini. He was undefeated when sent to the US, and won 2 of 3 starts here (lone loss due to fracture).
“Lord at War won the Group 1 Joaquin S. de Anchorena at 3 and was named champion miler in Argentina, and as an older horse in the US he won the Grade 1 Santa Anita Handicap among other races of note.
“Candy Ride, too, won the Anchorena, by 8 lengths, and another Group 1 at 1600 meters also by 8 lengths, and he arrived in the US as a champion miler like Lord at War. In the US, Candy Ride won the Grade 1 Pacific Classic at 1 1/4 miles in record time of 1:59.11 and retired undefeated in 6 starts.”
Candy Ride is a Fappiano-line sire. Click here to view his pedigree and race record.