Grade 1 winner Sippican Harbor was retired from racing earlier this year, and she was bred last month to prominent sire Medaglia d'Oro.
The news was initially reported by Tim Wilkin of the Albany Times Union.
Sippican Harbor, a 3-year-old Orb filly, put herself on the radar among last year's prominent juvenile fillies after a pair of showcase efforts at Saratoga Race Course. She broke her maiden in her second career start, an off-the-turf maiden special weight, by 17 lengths. Her signature score came in the G1 Spinaway Stakes, where she rallied from last after a half-mile in the seven-furlong race, then fanned out eight-wide to prevail by two lengths.
The filly then entered the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies at Churchill Downs, finishing sixth. She came out of the race with a left-front ankle injury and never raced agin.
“She fractured her ankle in the Breeders' Cup, and when [Dr. Larry] Bramlage operated on her, he found a few things and said, 'Be careful with her,'” trainer Gary Contessa said at the Fasig-Tipton Gulfstream Selected 2-Year-Olds In Training Sale earlier this week. “I brought her to Palm Meadows and trained her barely a week, 10 days, and the ankle was already angry and bothering her. We [re-radiographed] it, sent the x-rays to Bramlage, and he said, 'Look, you can give her more time, but it's one of those injuries where she had bone bruising in the condylar, and if it ever grows, it could be catastrophic.' It was a no-brainer.”
Sippican Harbor retired with two wins in four starts, earning $262,650 for owner Lee Pokoik. Contessa, as agent for Pokoik, bought Sippican Harbor for $260,000 at the 2017 Fasig-Tipton Saratoga Select Yearling Sale.
Contessa and Pokoik often buy horses at auction with the intent to pinhook them at later sales, with the backup plan of racing them if they don't command the right price upon resale. Sippican Harbor was one of those cases, joining Contessa's racing stable after finishing under her reserve with a final bid of $110,000 at last year's Ocala Breeders' Sales Co. March 2-Year-Olds In Training Sale.
When she exited training in January, Sippican Harbor was sent to Taylor Made Farm in Nicholasville, Ky., to begin her broodmare career. Taylor Made Sales also consigns Contessa and Pokoik's weanling-to-yearling pinhook prospects.
Medaglia d'Oro, a 20-year-old son of El Prado, stands at Darley America in Lexington, Ky., for an advertised fee of $200,000. The multiple G1-winner's most notable work at stud includes 2009 Horse of the Year Rachel Alexandra, champion Songbird, and Breeders' Cup winners Bar of Gold, New Money Honey, and Talismanic.
“Medaglia d'Oro is an A++ cross to her, and he's one of the hottest stallions in the world right now,” Contessa said.
New to the Paulick Report? Click here to sign up for our daily email newsletter to keep up on this and other stories happening in the Thoroughbred industry.
Copyright © 2020 Paulick Report.