A native of India whose string of talented racehorses is based in California, owner-entrepreneur Kaleem Shah is no stranger to travel, especially in search of quality horse flesh. Along with a pair of extremely qualified agents – trainer Bob Baffert and advisor Donato Lanni – Shah has made a habit of plucking future Grade 1 winners from the Fasig-Tipton Midlantic Two-Year-Olds in Training Sale. The trio of horsemen has found their most recent Midlantic successes in Grade 1 winners Eden’s Moon, Bayern, and Dortmund.
“We Seem to Get Lucky in May”
Speaking by phone a few weeks ahead of the 2016 Midlantic 2YO Sale, Shah attributed his success to a combination of luck and the skill of his advisors. “I’ve been very lucky at [the Midlantic Two-Year-Olds in Training] Sales.” Shah went on to name Lanni and Baffert as “instrumental” in his success. “Those two deserve all the credit,” he said.
Shah noted that while Eden’s Moon and Dortmund “jumped out” in the breeze show, all three of his recent G1 winners showed a lot of early promise, which was evident in part due to the dirt track at Timonium. “Bob [Baffert] always tells me, when you see them work on a dirt track, you get a much better idea,” Shah said. “Some of the other sales where they don’t work on dirt, it can be hit or miss.”
On the timing of the sale, Shah’s advisor Donato Lanni said simply, “We seem to get lucky in May… I think it’s a good time of year, in May, to watch two-year-olds perform. You know there’s good horses out of that sale every year.” He also noted that having the sale around Preakness time adds to the attraction.
In 2011, Baffert set his sights on a bay filly by popular sire Malibu Moon. Offered as Hip 5 by Bridlewood Farm as agent, Baffert secured the sale’s top-priced filly for $390,000 on behalf of his client Shah. Out of Eden’s Causeway, a winning daughter of Giant’s Causeway, the filly impressed with a quarter mile breeze in 21:3 at the under tack show and a pedigree which featured champion Paradise Creek and Grade 1 winners Forbidden Apple, Wild Event, and David Junior under her second dam. Shah named his promising new filly Eden’s Moon.
Eden’s Moon was second in her two-year-old debut, best of the rest behind future multiple graded stakes winner Reneesgotzip. In her second try a few weeks later, Eden’s Moon sped away from the competition to secure an 11 ½ length maiden win. Shah’s filly got her revenge on Reneesgotzip in the Las Virgenes S. (G1) next time out, besting her rival by 3 ¼ lengths. Eden’s Moon raced six more times as a three-year-old, winning the San Clemente H. (G2) and placing in the Santa Anita Oaks (G1), Hollywood Oaks (G2), and Indiana Oaks (G2). She retired after a successful sophomore campaign with earnings of $387,216.
In 2013, Shah went to $320,000 to purchase a dark bay or brown son of Offlee Wild from Eddie Woods, agent. Then known as Hip 145, the colt worked a quarter in 21:3. The third foal out of the unraced Thunder Gulch mare Alittlebitearly, the colt was already half-sibling to two winners. Deep in his pedigree were Grade 1 winners Althea, Balletto (AUE), Acoma, Ketoh, Ali Oop, and exceptional sire Arch.
Named Bayern after the German football club, the Midlantic grad got off the mark right, breaking his maiden at first try over a field which included future multiple graded stakes winner Hoppertunity. Bayern followed up his maiden win with an allowance score, then took aim at several of the top races for three-year-olds, coming home first in the Haskell Invitational S. (G1), Woody Stephens S. (G2), and Pennsylvania Derby (G2). Bayern took on older horses for the first time in November of his sophomore season, winning the Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) by a nose. On that day, Bayern defeated Kentucky Derby (G1) and Preakness S. (G1) winner California Chrome, Belmont S. (G1) winner Tonalist, and until-then unbeaten champion Shared Belief. Bayern was first by earnings in 2014 and retired with a bankroll of $4,454,930.
While Bayern was flashing his stuff as a three-year-old, Shah returned to the wellspring of the Midlantic two-year-old sale, where agent Donato Lanni placed a top bid of $140,000 on Hip 383, a chestnut colt by Big Brown. A son of the stakes-winning Tale of the Cat mare Our Josephina, the colt worked 10:1 at the under tack show. His catalogue page was dominated by third dam Lakeville Miss, a champion juvenile, multiple grade 1 winner, and grade 1 producer.
Following in a tradition that served him well, Shah named his new colt after German football club Dortmund. Like Bayern, Dortmund came flying out of the gate, breaking his maiden by 4 ¾ at first try. Dortmund strung together an opening streak of six wins, including wins in the Los Alamitos Futurity (G1), Santa Anita Derby (G1), San Felipe S. (G2), and Robert B. Lewis S. (G3). Dortmund placed in the Kentucky Derby (G1) in a battle of unbeaten Fasig-Tipton sales grads which was won by eventual Triple Crown winner and Horse of the Year American Pharoah.
Dortmund got back on track with wins in the Native Diver S. (G3) and the Big Bear S., and remains in training with Bob Baffert. To date, Dortmund has earned $1,712,480 and boasts eight wins from 10 starts.
Watch Eden’s Moon, Bayern, and Dortmund strut their stuff on the track:
The 2016 Midlantic Two-Year-Olds in Training Sale will be held May 23-24 at the Maryland Fairgrounds in Timonium, MD, with sale sessions beginning daily at 10 a.m. The under tack show will be held over three days, from May 17-19, beginning daily at 8 a.m. The full catalogue is available online now at www.fasigtipton.com.
Find your own success story at:
The Midlantic Two-Year-Olds in Training Sale
May 23-24, 2016
Under Tack Show: May 17-19, 2016