Nest Continues Successful Line of Females
What exactly might constitute a "Filly Triple Crown" has never really been a settled subject, but nearly every version includes the Coaching Club American Oaks (G1), so it would seem fair to accord it the status of a classic. This year's version certainly underlined the point with the Longines Kentucky Oaks (G1) first and second, Secret Oath and Nest, going 1-2 in reverse order, with Nest avenging herself with a 12 1/4-length victory July 23. Nest comes from a female line that since arriving in the U.S. around 80 years ago has developed into one of the most outstanding classic-producing families in the world. The female line arrived in North America in the shape of the gray mare Boudoir II, who was imported in 1941. A daughter of the Aga Khan's 1936 Epsom Derby winner Mahmoud—subsequently leading sire in North America—Boudoir II never won a black-type event but was good enough to run second, beaten just a head, in the Irish One Thousand Guineas. At stud, she produced one top-class racehorse and two important broodmares. Your Host, her 1947 colt by Alibhai—bred by movie mogul Louis B. Mayer—won 10 stakes, including the Del Mar Futurity and Santa Anita Derby, and sired five-time Horse of the Year Kelso. Flower Bed, born a year earlier than Your Host, and by Mayer's outstanding sire, Beau Pere, produced the Delaware Handicap victress Flower Bowl (by Alibhai, and so three-quarters sister to Your Host). Flower Bowl had only five foals, but three were Bowl of Flowers, Champion filly at 2 and 3, and the very important sires Graustark and His Majesty. Flower Bowl's grandson Whiskey Road (out of Bowl of Flowers) is a factor in modern U.S. pedigrees through his son Strawberry Road, the broodmare sire of Quality Road. Flower Bed is also granddam of three-time champion Gallant Bloom, and ancestress of several other important winners, including Songbird and Groupie Doll. Boudoir II's daughter Your Hostess, a sister to Your Host, was stakes placed and produced four stakes winners. They were headed by Coraggioso (by Gallant Man, also sire of Gallant Bloom), successful in the Ladies Handicap (G1), and T.V. Commercial, who took the Arlington-Washington Futurity at a time that it was equivalent to a grade 1 event. Your Hostess has also had a remarkable impact as ancestress of classic winners around the world. She is second dam of 1969 Kentucky Derby winner Majestic Prince (as well as his brother Crowned Prince, champion at 2 in England); third dam of French Derby (G1) winner Caracolero (by Graustark, so having the three-quarters sisters Flower Bowl/Your Hostess 2x3); third dam of Secreto, who upset El Gran Senor in the 1984 Epsom Derby; fourth dam of Real Quiet, who took the first two legs of the U.S. Triple Crown in 1998; and fifth dam of Daiwa Major, successful in the Satsuki Sho Japanese Two Thousand Guineas (G1) and a leading sire in that country. The Your Hostess branch also came fairly close to another classic win in 2022, when tail-female descendant Zandon took third in the Kentucky Derby Presented by Woodford Reserve (G1). The branch of Your Hostess that leads to Nest made a detour back to Europe. At the 2002 Arquana August sale, a filly by Quiet American out of the French black-type winning Nureyev mare Nureyev's Best was knocked down to trainer Carlos Laffon-Parias, acting on behalf of Madrid-based businessman Dario Hinojosa (who is also breeder of other U.S. grade 1 winners Chinchon and Bribon) for the equivalent of $31,510. This looked something of a bargain given that Nureyev's Best was half sister to Really Blue, the dam of Real Quiet, who was also by Quiet American. Racing in France, Andujar had just one third in five starts at 3. In North America the following year, however, it was a different story. After impressive wins in a maiden over Santa Anita's downhill 6 1/2-furlong turf course and an allowance on dirt at Hollywood Park—which she took by 10 1/2 lengths—Andujar was sold privately to J. Paul Reddam and Mark Schlesinger. Debuting for her new owners, Andjuar took the Milady Breeders' Cup Handicap (G2) by seven lengths over Hollywood Story. She started just twice after that, a close third in the Vanity Invitational Handicap (G1) and a third behind Ashado in the Go For Wand Handicap (G1). The following year, Andujar, having not run for more than 15 months, was offered as a racing/breeding prospect at the 2006 Keeneland November Sale and realized $2,500,000 to My Meadowview Farm. Bred to A.P. Indy, she produced as her first foal Marion Ravenwood, who carried the My Meadowview colors to victory in the Capades Stakes at Aqueduct. Two foals later, to A.P. Indy's son, Pulpit, Andujar came up with Abstraction, winner of the Federico Tesio Stakes and third in the Matt Winn Stakes (G3). Marion Ravenwood's third foal, Idol, a son of Curlin, realized $375,000 at the 2018 Keeneland September Yearling Sale, and developed into one of the better distance males of 2021, taking the Santa Anita Handicap (G1) over Express Train, Maxfield, and Independence Hall. In 2017, Marion Ravenwood was sold for $400,000 at the Keeneland November Sale, carrying a Pioneerof the Nile colt, who as Dr. Jack has twice earned places in black-type events. In 2018 Marion Ravenwood's purchasers bred her back to Curlin, the result being Nest, who realized $350,000 at Keeneland September. Never off the board in eight starts, Nest has earned more than $1.2 million and in addition to the Coaching Club American Oaks also has won the Demoiselle Stakes (G2), Suncoast Stakes, and Central Bank Ashland Stakes (G1) and been second in the Kentucky Oaks (G1) and Belmont Stakes Presented by NYRA Bets (G1). Idol and Nest are two of the 10 stakes winners from just 51 starters for Curlin out of A.P. Indy mares, with the others including additional grade 1 scorers Malathaat and Global Campaign. There are a further 10 stakes winners from 74 starters by Curlin out of mares by sons of Bernardini, and of those that cross with mares by Bernardini—bred on the same A.P. Indy/Quiet American cross as Marion Ravenwood—has produced eight, including Clairiere, a grade 1 winner who took the Shuvee Stakes (G2) last weekend; the 2020 Coaching Club American Oaks victress Paris Lights; and other graded scorers Cezanne, Point of Honor, and Spice Is Nice.