May-Foaled 1st-Crop Alpha 2YO Filly Brings $150K at FT MidAtlantic as 10 Alpha 2YOs Gross $1,030,000

A May-foaled juvenile filly from the first crop of multiple Grade 1 winner ALPHA sold for $150,000 at the Monday, May 21 session of Fasig-Tipton Midlantic’s 2-year-olds in training auction in Timonium, Maryland, going to agent Marette Farrell on behalf of Ryan Exline’s and Justin Border’s Exline-Border Racing. Bred in New York by Dr. A. Leonard Pineau and Patricia Pineau and consigned as Hip No. 25 by Kenneth Lejeune Training Stables, this filly’s price was more than twice the sale’s average and nearly four times the sale’s median. She was the fourth six-figure sales 2-year-old of 2018 from Alpha’s first crop, which has produced ten juveniles that have grossed $1,030,000 at auctions this spring.

At the pre-sale under tack show, Hip No. 25 impressed and might have surprised some observers with a furlong workout in 10 4/5 seconds despite a series of mishaps. Since the filly is from a female family more oriented towards sturdy stayers than speed (the most prestigious win by any of her half-siblings was at 1¼ miles in Panama; a half-brother raced 69 times from ages 3 to 7), a sub-11-second furlong drill was probably unexpected.

Initially, her workout appeared to be fraught with peril: “The rider almost fell off, she switched to her left lead, got back into the middle (of the track), switched to her right lead and finished her work,” remarked consignor Lejeune to Ron Mitchell of BloodHorse magazine. “It was remarkable.”

Purchasing agent Farrell was equally impressed: “We just thought she was phenomenal,” said Farrell to Mitchell about the workout. “We really liked that she didn’t turn a hair with that, and she stayed focused, and she knew what her job was. She galloped out really well.”

Lejeune, who had purchased Hip No. 25 at Fasig-Tipton Kentucky’s 2017 October yearling sale, expressed several favorable recollections about the Alpha filly as a yearling: “She had a really great walk, showed well, and had a good attitude about her. Every expectation I had was there and more.”

Following Hip No. 25’s eventful workout, Lejeune was pleased with how much attention she drew from potential buyers wanting to look at her: “She was popular. She was never in her stall.”