Last year, we laid out all of the reasons that we were looking forward to breeding I’m Engaged to the exciting first-year stallion, Lord Nelson. Unfortunately, Lord Nelson developed health issues which meant that he missed the 2017 breeding season, so we did not get that chance.
But Lord Nelson has now recovered sufficiently to cover mares in 2018, and although Spendthrift is no longer offering Share the Upside with the horse, we are still going to take advantage of the opportunity to get I’m Engaged into his first book and will be breeding her to Lord Nelson this spring.
As we pointed out prior to last breeding season, I’m Engaged’s female family has already had plenty of success when crossed with Seattle Slew-line stallions such as Lord Nelson. The most accomplished of these runners is Eclipse Champion Surfside. Surfside’s pedigree actually looks quite similar to that of the foal from this mating, in that she has Seattle Slew over Seeking the Gold over the Starlet Storm family. Other successful runners bred on a similar pattern include Grade 2 winner My Boston Gal (by Boston Harbor out of a Forty Niner half-sister to Starlet Storm); stakes winner Coast Line (by Boston Harbor out of a Mr. Prospector mare who is out of a full-sister to Starlet Storm); stakes-placed winner Flanders Fields (by A.P. Indy out of Flanders); and Capital Spending (a winner of over $100,000 by A.P. Indy out of Starlet Storm herself). Furthermore, I’m Engaged’s half-sister Space Cruise, by the Mr. Prospector-line stallion Cape Canaveral, has produced a winner by Mineshaft.
In addition to the above, and to the other reasons that we laid out last year, there have been a couple of further developments in 2017 that reinforce our opinion to send I’m Engaged to the son of Pulpit. First, I’m Engaged’s 3-year-old daughter I’m With Miller broke her maiden in July impressively by three lengths at Ellis Park – and I’m With Miller is by the Pulpit stallion Sky Mesa. Second, Happy Mesa, another daughter of Sky Mesa out of a Broken Vow mare, added a victory in the $100,000 Hilltop Stakes to her resume, while My Miss Tapit, a daughter of Tapit out of a Broken Vow mare, won a stakes race, reinforcing the success of this particular Pulpit/Broken Vow cross. And the larger nick, that of A.P. Indy-line stallions with Unbridled-line mares, has continued to be a successful one, picking up new multiple Grade 1 winner Moonshine Memories.
A stakes-winning 2-year-old, Lord Nelson won the G2 San Vicente at 3-years-old, and then really hit his stride in 2016 when he went four-for-four as a 4-year-old, winning in succession: (1) a 6-furlong allowance over Grade 3 winner Ocho Ocho Ocho in 1:07.94, (2) the G1 Triple Bend in 1:21.04 for 7 furlongs, (3) the G1 Bing Crosby by four lengths in 1:07.65 for 6 furlongs (a new stakes record at Del Mar), and (4) the G1 Santa Anita Sprint Championship at 6 furlongs. Unfortunately, Lord Nelson had to scratch from the G1 Breeders’ Cup Sprint two days prior to the race when a small cut on his leg became infected, and he subsequently retired to Spendthrift Farm. Missing the Breeders’ Cup also meant that he unfortunately lost out on the Eclipse Award for Champion Sprinter to that race’s winner, Drefong.
Having missed the 2017 breeding season does not make Lord Nelson any less attractive as a stallion prospect, and actually, the fact that Spendthrift will be limiting his book to see how he handles everything physically will only help those with foals from his first crop at the sales.
We also still love that Lord Nelson and I’m Engaged are a nice like-to-like physical pairing, both being well-balanced and muscular horses, and hopefully Lord Nelson will contribute a bit more leg to her foal than I’m Engaged has herself.
**You can read a December ’17 DRF article in which we are quoted about Lord Nelson here.
Lord Nelson wins the G1 Bing Crosby
Lord Nelson wins the G1 Triple Bend
Lord Nelson wins the G1 Santa Anita Sprint Championship
Lord Nelson wins the G2 San Vicente