Katsumi Yoshida goes to $1.5 million for Fourstar Crook at Fasig-Tipton November

Monday, November 5th, 2018

Fasig-Tipton photo

By Sarah Mace

Accomplished New York-bred race mares were hot commodities at Sunday’s Fasig-Tipton November Sale, led by Grade 1 stakes winner and millionaire Fourstar Crook (Freud), who was purchased by Katsumi Yoshida for $1.5 million. Quezon and Isabelle also brought premium prices, while the top New York-bred weanling, a filly from the first crop of Speightster, fetched six figures.

Fourstar Crook, seventh in Saturday’s Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Turf as a well-respected 9-2 shot, hit a home run Sunday when offered as Hip 195 by ELiTE for ownership group Michael Dubb, Bethlehem Stable (Michael Caruso) and Gary Aisquith. When the bidding stopped at $1.5 million, the long-eared bay daughter of New York sire Freud was the property of Katsumi Yoshida.

Fourstar Crook has been a model of consistency and determination on the racetrack throughout her career for trainer Chad Brown. Beginning in the state-bred ranks and graduating to graded competition at the highest level this year, she retires with a record of 12 wins, four seconds and a third from 20 lifetime starts and career earnings of $1,624,566.

Belmont has been the stage for Fourstar Crook’s greatest achievements with seven wins in eight tries, capped on October 7 by a victory in the Grade 1 Flower Bowl. Winner of the Grade 2 New York Stakes in June, she defeated Sistercharlie who went on to win the Breeders’ Cup race Saturday, and ran second to the presumptive champion in the Jenny Wiley at Keeneland and Beverly D. Stakes at Arlington. Fourstar Crook has eight stakes tallies in all on her resume.

Bred by Kathleen M. Feron and foaled at Akindale Farm in Pawling, Fourstar Crook sold as a yearling to Allied Bloodstock at the 2013 Fasig-Tipton New York-bred sale for $55,000. A $70,000 buyback when offered at the 2014 Fasig-Tipton March 2-year-old sale, she was purchased by owner Michael Dubb for $110,000 at Fasig-Tipton’s Midlantic sale.

Fourstar Crook’s dam is Avril a Portugal by D’Accord, an unplaced John Hettinger-bred mare who is half-sister to stakes winner Jay’s Crown. Honorable Miss appears under third dam. The producer of six winners, Avril a Portugal is also the dam of Coaltown Legend (Jump Start), who earned over $325,000.

A breeding powerhouse in Japan with his brothers Teruya and Haruya, Katsumi Yoshida owns Northern Farm on the island of Hokkaido. Yoshida explained his approach to breeding in a New York Times profile in 2015 as follows: “I buy the best and I never sell. The United States sells, Europe sells. I only buy. I never sell, except some yearlings. I never sell a good mare.” Another tenant of Yoshida’s bloodstock philosophy is that the best progeny come from stallions and dams who were themselves outstanding racehorses, and Fourstar Crook certainly fits the bill.

Multiple stakes winner and dual graded stakes performer Quezon (Tiz Wonderful), offered as Hip 127 by Valkyre Stud Agent III, was purchased by Bridlewood Farm for $700,000. She is in foal to Horse of the Year Gun Runner on an April 16 cover.

Also a consistent runner, Quezon won seven races in all for owner Marc Keller and trainer Robert Ribaudo, completed the exacta six times and was third twice in 19 starts. She won a black type race each year from 2014-18, has three graded stakes placings on her resume and earned $759,200 by the time she retired to broodmare duty.

Bred by Apache Farm LLC and foaled at Apache Farm North in Mt. Morris, Quezon is the only foal produced by Kalookan Dancer, a multiple stakes-winning California-bred daughter of Olympio. Quezon was a $90,000 yearling purchase by Riverside Stable at the 2013 Fasig-Tipton New York-bred preferred sale in Saratoga.

Isabelle, Hip 204, who is in foal to Will Take Charge on a March 19 cover, drew a winning bid of $300,000 from Breeze Easy LLC. Consigned by Lane’s End, Agent, the daughter of Successful Appeal won four stakes races, led by the open Heavenly Prize Invitational in 2017. Isabelle finished in the exacta 11 times in 20 starts with seven wins, and on retirement had bankrolled $508,102. Trained by Lisa Lewis then Bill Mott, Isabelle was campaigned by William Schettine, who purchased her at the 2012 Fasig-Tipton New York select yearling sale for $100,000.

Isabelle was bred by Bluegrass Farm Partners in partnership with Jeffrey Tucker, and foaled at Tucker’s Stonebridge Farm in Gansevoort. Her dam is Florida-bred stakes-placed runner Merrill Gold, who is a half-sister to stakes runner Millennium Storm and Bella Jolie, the dam of champion sprinter and sire Runhappy.

Monday’s top New York-bred weanling was Hip 102, a chestnut filly from the first crop of Speightster bred by SF Bloodstock LLC and Seclusive Farm. Purchased by Maya Racing from the consignment of Bedouin Bloodstock Agent I for $100,000, the filly is out of Jungle Tale, by Lion Heart, runner-up in the 2009 Grade 3 Natalma Stakes at Woodbine.

Jungle Tale was purchased by Baccari Bloodstock at the 2017 Keeneland November sale with the sale filly in utero. Her lone foal to race is a winner. The filly’s second dam is stakes winner Mary Kies, who produced three stakes performers. Third dam Flying Girl (Fr) is a stakes winner and group performer in Italy.

Sales action shifts to Keeneland today, Monday, November 5, for the opening session of the 12-day auction in Lexington which runs through November 16. The opening session, which consists of a one-day super-select Book 1, begins at noon ET, with all other sessions starting at 10 a.m. daily.



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