Charles Town Oaks Grand Prix (PA) Breeders Cup

Racing Biz article by Frank Vespe regarding HnR’s Grand Prix plans for Charles Town Oaks.  Frank does an excellent and accurate job of describing Grand Prix’s current status and plans.  

Racing Biz Charles Town Oaks Grand Prix’s Breeders Cup

by Frank Vespe

“Sometimes it’s the breaks you don’t get that turn out to matter most.

Take the case of Grand Prix. Her breeder, Hank Nothhaft, took her to the Keeneland September Yearling Sale in 2015, expecting to leave with more money but one less horse than he brought.

He set her reserve at $150,000. Bidding topped out at $145,000. No sale.

The sophomore is slated to make her next start in the Grade 3, $300,000 Charles Town Oaks September 23. The seven-furlong fixture tops the track’s “Race for the Ribbon” card.

“If you get into racing and you have a little moxie and a little luck, these horses can take you anywhere,” Nothhaft said. “It’s amazing.”

Grand Prix Inside Rail Photo Equi Photo @PARX

Grand Prix began her career in the California-based barn of Gary Mandella. It took her four tries to break her maiden, finally scoring on the synthetic at Golden Gate. She followed that up with a game second – beaten just a nose – in the $50,000 Golden Gate Debutante Stakes.

But for the most part, her West Coast exertions didn’t yield much benefit – just the single win in her first nine starts.

Though Nothhaft, a retired tech entrepreneur, lives in Northern California, he’s a Pennsylvania-bred, as is Grand Prix. So he decided to send the filly back East; though Mandella remains the trainer of record, Grand Prix now operates out of Keith Nations’ Parx Racing barn.

“To be a breeder and an owner to run in Pennsylvania, it’s so much better than the negligible program we have in California,” Nothhaft said.

Grand Prix &Jose Ferrer head to the Winners Circle post Garofalo Stakes

And Grand Prix has taken advantage of that rich program. She won the state-restricted New Start Stakes at Penn National on the Penn Mile undercard, followed up with a win and a second in allowance company, and last out scored by a length-and-a-half in the $100,000 Dr. Teresa Garofalo Memorial Stakes at Parx Racing, also a state-restricted event.

She has three wins and a second from four starts since coming east.

“All in all, she’s very consistent, fires each time, and seems to be improving,” her owner and breeder said.

In the Garofalo, Grand Prix took on older rivals, besting a field that included salty runners like the multiple stakes winners Power of Snunner and Discreet Senorita.

Still, Nothhaft acknowledges that the water figures to be deeper in the Oaks. The race has drawn 52 nominations. Among the expected runners is Shimmering Aspen, the Rodney Jenkins-trained filly who has dominated at sprint distances at Laurel Park this season.

“I think there’ll be some really nice fillies there,” Nothhaft admitted. “I think it’ll end up being a very interesting race. We would be very happy if she finished in the top three.”

To that end, Nothhaft and his trainers have developed what he called “a detailed plan” to help her acclimate to the surroundings at Charles Town, a place neither she nor Nothhaft has ever raced. She’ll ship in a few days ahead of the race and get a chance to gallop over the track a time or two prior to race day.

“If you’re going to go through all of the trouble of going, you want to make sure you do everything you can to give her a chance,” Nothhaft explained.

Nothhaft also intends to stick with jockey Jose Ferrer, who rode Grand Prix to victory in the Garofalo Memorial.

“First, he gave her a great ride that day,” Nothhaft said by way of explanation. “Second, he’s won (almost 4,200) races.”

For the longer term, Nothhaft hopes to race her through her five-year-old season. After that he intends to breed her. He has, he said, “no intention” of selling her despite her rising value.

Nothhaft has been involved in racing since 2008. He’s bred some good horses. He’s owned some good horses. He’s also slogged through all the ways that the sport can fool or foil you. He knows what sort of opportunity is there for Grand Prix.

“You really need these successes to get you over those valleys of despair,” he said. “For Grand Prix, this is our Breeders’ Cup.” “

 

HnR’s Grand Prix (PA) wins Garofalo Memorial Stakes Wire to Wire

Grand Prix becomes Multiple Stakes Winner against older rivals at PA Day at the Races Stakes Card at PARX in Bensalem PA

Grand Prix found the fast track at Parx to her liking and won the Garofalo Memorial Stakes wire to wire unchallenged by her older rivals.  This was her 3rd win in 4 starts since moving from CA to PA to take advantage of the PA_BRED incentive program.  Grand Prix is now in the top 50  of approximately 6500 three year old fillies to race based on 2017 earnings.   HnR Grand Prix connections are planning a start in a graded stakes next time out.

Race Video  Video Link via Bloodhorse Magazine
Grand Prix Inside Rail Photo Equi Photo @PARX

Below is an excellent summary of the race that appeared in the Thoroughbred Daily News on Sept 2nd.

Thoroughbred Daily News Sept 2, 2017

  1. TERESA GAROFALO MEMORIAL S., $107,750, PRX, 9-2, (S),

3yo/up, f/m, 6f, 1:10.06, ft.

Grand Prix (PA) finish line photo lost her right front shoe sometime during the race.  Crosses the finish line with no shoe on.  Equi Photo @PARX Garofalo Memorial Stakes
1–GRAND PRIX, 122, f, 3, Tale of the Cat–Be Envied (MSP,

$200,697), by Lemon Drop Kid. ($62,000 RNA Wlg ’14 KEENOV; $145,000 RNA Ylg ’15 KEESEP). O/B-HnR Nothhaft

Horse Racing, LLC (PA); T-Gary Mandella; J-Jose C. Ferrer.

$60,000. Lifetime Record: 13-4-4-2, $207,750. *1/2 to Finest City (City Zip), Ch. Female Sprinter, GISW, $1,256,394.

2–Mama Jones, 119, f, 4, Smarty Jones–Mohonour, by Honour and Glory. O-Someday Farm; B-Patricia L. Chapman (PA);

T-John C. Servis. $25,000.

3–Power of Snunner, 126, m, 7, Power by Far–Snunner, by Yarrow Brae. O/B-James M. Courtney (PA); T-Timothy C. Kreiser. $13,750.

Margins: 1HF, HD, HD. Odds: 2.90, 16.30, 2.40.

Also Ran: Discreet Senorita, Hey Braciole, Campeona, Anais.

Members of the Garofalo Family joined HnR Grand Prix Connections in Winners Circle 

Grand Prix | Equi-Photo

Grand Prix recorded her first career black-type win on the dirt in the New Start S. against state-bred foes at Penn National June 3 before finishing runner-up amongst allowance company going five panels on the grass here June 26. Victorious in the Penn slop July 22, she was given ample support to make it two straight while returning to stakes company.

Grand Prix chilling before race Photo Hank Nothhaft

On the engine from the start, the bay steadily increased her advantage through crisp fractions of :21.90 and :44.51, was clear while drifting out in the stretch and kept it going all the way home to best Mama Jones. Favored Discreet Senorita was fourth.

Be Envied, a half sister to GI Futurity S. winner Burning Roma (Rubiano), is also responsible for champion female sprinter and millionairess Finest City (City Zip), who earned her biggest career victory in the GI Breeders= Cup Filly and Mare Sprint. The

15-year-old mare produced a full-brother to Grand Prix in 2015, prior to aborting the following season.

The Daily Racing Form also published a race summary authored by Jim Dunleavy presented below:

Daily Racing Form Garofalo Stakes by Jim Dunleavy

“Garofalo Memorial: Grand Prix wire to wire

Grand Prix, a 3-year-old daughter of Tale of the Cat, went wire to wire to defeat older Pennsylvania-bred fillies and mares in the $107,750 Teresa Garofalo Memorial Stakes.

Grand Prix, the 5-2 third choice in the betting, sprinted clear early in the six-furlong race, then was never seriously challenged while winning by 1 1/2 lengths. She paid $7.80 and was timed in 1:10.06. The race was run in the rain over a fast track.

Grand Prix is trained by Gary Mandella, was ridden by Jose Ferrer, and is owned by Hank Nothhaft. She has been based at Delaware Park and Parx since May.

She won the $101,000 New Start Stakes over statebred 3-year-old fillies at Penn National on the Penn Mile card June 3.

Mama Jones, a 16-1 shot, raced forwardly throughout and held second by a head over the late-running Power of Snunner. Discreet Senorita, the slight 2-1 favorite over Power of Snunner, was bumped and squeezed back at the start. She rallied along the inside into the stretch but was caught late for third by Power of Snunner, who finished a head in front of her.

Grand Prix (PA) Proud Owner and Breeder wearing Coolmore Jacket in support GP Sire Tale of the Cat and Finest City Hat 1/2 Sister of Grand Prix

Grand Prix, who was bred by her owner, is now 4 for 13 with earnings of $207,750.”

 

Coolmore Coverage
MORE STAKES SUCCESS FOR GRAND PRIX

Evergreen Coolmore stalwart Tale of the Cat is the sire of progressive filly Grand Prix (3f Tale of the Cat x Be Envied, by Lemon Drop Kid), who landed another Black type victory when taking out the $107,750 Dr Teresa Garafalo Memorial Stakes at Parx Racing on Saturday .

A homebred for HnR Nothhaft Horseracing trained by Gary Mandella, Grand Prix raced clear to win the six furlong sprint by a length and a half.

Ultra-consistent, Grand Prix has the overall record of four wins and six placings from 13 starts with prizemoney topping $200,000.

Grand Prix is bred to be good as a half-sister to 2016 Champion US Female Sprinter and winner of the 2016 Grade I Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint Finest City.

Grand Prix is the third winner from stakes-placed Be Envied, a half-sister to Grade I winner Burning Roma.

The Paulick Report Coverage

Paulick Report Garofalo Stakes

“HnR Nothhaft Horse Racing’s Grand Prix was a sharp, front running winner of the $100,000 Dr. Teresa Garofalo Memorial Stakes for fillies and mares three and up. The 3 year-old daughter of Tale of the Cat broke sharply and was in front after the first sixteenth of a mile. She’d opened a clear lead after hitting the quarter in a quick 21.90 and from there, was never really threatened. She led by two entering the far turn, three approaching the top of the stretch and then was geared down late by winning jockey Jose Ferrer to win by an official margin of a length and a half. Trained by Gary Mandella, Grand Prix went off as third choice in the wagering at 5-2 and paid $7.80 to win. She covered the six furlongs in 1:10.06”

Female sprint champ Finest City to sell at Fasig-Tipton

 

Finest City will represent her namesake city-San Diego-in the 2017 Breeders’ Championships at Del Mar on November 4th and then be presented for sale at the Fasig-Tipton NIght of the Stars Auction on November 6th.  Given her breeding and on track accomplishments, Finest City will command strong interest and most certainly will be a 7 figure sale.  Below is a link and copy of a Daily Racing Form Article summarizing this latest adventure.

Finest City half sisters Grand Prix and Move, also PA_Breds continue to compliment Finest City and vise versa.  Grand Prix, already a stakes winner, and Move will be entered at PARX on Pennsylvania Day at the Races Sept 2nd..  Demonstrating the versatility of broodmare Be Envied, Grand Prix will be sprinting 6 furlongs on dirt, while Move will be going 1 1/16 mile on the turf.  Grand Prix is by Tale of the Cat while Move is by Silver Train.

Bloodhorse Finest City Fasig-Tipton Article
Link Finest City Daily Racing Form Article by Joe Nevills

 

“By Joe Nevills

Finest City, the champion female sprinter of 2016, will be offered at this year’s Fasig-Tipton Kentucky fall selected mixed sale, two days after a planned start in Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint at Del Mar on Nov. 4.

The 5-year-old City Zip mare won last year’s edition of the Filly and Mare Sprint at Santa Anita en route to her Eclipse Award honors.

Finest City has won 5 of 19 starts for earnings of $1,256,394. In addition to her Breeders’ Cup score, she has won the Grade 2 Great Lady M. Stakes and Grade 2 Santa Monica Stakes, and her seven graded placings include four in Grade 1 company.

Ian Kruljac trains Finest City for owner Seltzer Thoroughbreds. Kruljac will consign the mare as agent for the owner at the Fasig-Tipton sale, which will take place Nov. 6 in Lexington, Ky.

“Finest City has been a dream to care for,” Kruljac said. “Her brilliance, durability, versatility, and personality have given us a lifetime of memories. She has battled the best mares of her generation on any surface and at any distance.”

Grand Prix jogs to the Winner’s Circle Javiar Castellano up

Bred in Pennsylvania by HnR Nothhaft Horseracing, Finest City is out of the stakes-placed Lemon Drop Kid mare Be Envied, whose three foals to race are all winners, including stakes winner Grand Prix.

Move by Silver Train as a 3 yo at Tampa Bay Downs

Her extended family includes Grade 1 winner Burning Roma and Grade 3 winner Vivano.

Be Envied Broodmare of Finest City, Grand Prix and Move

“We are blessed to have one more chapter to write in this year’s Breeders Cup Filly and Mare Sprint before she goes to auction and begins a well-deserved career as a broodmare, and passes on her brilliance for years to come,” Kruljac said.”

 

Finest City Honored as PA BRED Horse of the Year 2016

The Pennsylvania Horse Breeders Association (PHBA) hosted Its’ 38th Annual Iroquois Awards Banquet on June 9 at The Hershey Hotel. PHBA members, the board of directors, and top Pennsylvania breeders and owners were present for a great night of dinner, cocktails, and conversation.

Brian Sanfratello, Executive Director of the PHBA, served as Master of Ceremonies for the gala evening. Roger Legg PHBA President offered his greetings and welcome to the assembled group, while the Honorable Russell Redding, Secretary of Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture provided insightful comments on the current status and support by PA for the thoroughbred industry.

 

Russell Redding PA Secretary of Agriculture PHBA Awards 2017
Russell Redding PA Secretary of Agriculture PHBA Awards 2017

Henry “Hank” Nothhaft provided the Keynote address describing his journey to breeding Finest City, one of four, and the first PABRED Breeders’ Cup Champion in 24 years, and Eclipse Award Winner as Best Female Sprinter.

Click on the link below for the full script of Hank Nothhaft Keynote.

Hank Nothhaft Keynote Script

PHBA Keynote Audience
PHBA Keynote Audience


Impressive Crystal Trophies were awarded for a number of categories.

Click on the link below to view photos PHBA Crystal Awards.

Photos PHBA Crystal Category & Iroquois Awards 2017

See the full list of Category Winners listed Below.

 

Iroqouis Champions 2017

Full Gallery of Photos of the PHBA Awards, Click Link Below:

PHBA IROQUOIS AWARDS PHOTO GALLERY 2017 

Hank Nothhaft owner of HnR Nothhaft Horseracing accepts Horse of the Year Award for HnR PABRED Finest City.

 

Hank Nothhaft Accepts Finest City HOY Award form Betsy Barr PHBA Director
Hank Nothhaft Accepts Finest City HOY Award form Betsy Barr PHBA Director

Grand Prix (PA) captures 1st Stakes Title New Start Stakes

After an impressive outing at Santa Anita on May 11, 2017 in an open Allowance Race on the downhill turf course,  HnR decided to ship her to Pennsylvania to take advantage of the lucrative PABRED Stakes program.  Grand Prix, trained by Gary Mandella, arrived in good order in PA via Tex Sutton Horse Transport.

Grand Prix jogs to the Winner's Circle
Grand Prix jogs to the Winner’s Circle

Based on her race fitness and positive conditioning at Delaware Park in Keith Nation’s Barn, we decided to run her the New Start Stakes, a 6 furlong sprint on the dirt for 3 year old PABRED fillies on June 3rd at Penn National in Grantville, Pa.  The New Start Stakes was part of a 7 stakes program including the prestigious Pennsylvania Mile and the Governor’s Cup.  Javier Castellano, 4 time Eclipse Award Winning jockey was booked to ride Grand Prix.

HAPPY HOMECOMING FOR NOTHHAFT AS GRAND PRIX TAKES NEW START

Click the above link for Racing Biz Article by Frank Vespe

Grand Prix broke sharply, maintained a position of stalking the leaders about a length off the lead before asserting herself at the 1/4 pole, maintaining her lead to the end of the race, besting undefeated, stakes winner and PA 2 yo filly of the year Rose Tree.  We were not only gratified that she won impressively, but her splits and final times of 1:09.61 were certainly on the high end of our range of expectations.  Grand Prix came out of the race 100% and will stay on the east coast.   We are currently planning at least 3 more races before assessing our next move with her.  Photos by B n D Photography.

 

Trophy Presentation by Brian Sanfratello PHBA Executive Director to Javier Castellano and Hank Nothhaft
Trophy Presentation by Brian Sanfratello PHBA Executive Director to Javier Castellano and Hank Nothhaft Observed by Northview Stallions Paul O’Laughlin

High Mark “HnR’s Breeders’ Cup Win”

Nothhaft ranks Finest City score in Breeders’ Cup among top achievements  

Article Written by Tom Law

Published in Mid Atlantic Thoroughbred Magazine Dec, 2016  

Breeders’ Cup Photos courtesy Racing Heart Photography

Photos from HnR Nothhaft Horseracing Library who holds rights to utilize on HnRRacing.com

Henry R “Hank” Nothhaft got involved with racing toward the tail end of a career in the high-technology industry knowing he’d need a challenge and something to feel passionate about as retirement loomed.

“I’d gotten into the horse racing business because I knew that being in high tech, that I’d retire, the inevitable cycle of life,” Nothhaft said.  “I’m still very interested in it, but I don’t have the overwhelming passion that I had when I first got in it, so I was looking for something else to do.  So approximately 10 years ago I got involved. “

“I didn’t know anything to tell you the truth.  I didn’t know how little I really knew.  I thought I knew about it, but after a while I realized how naive I really was.” Nothhaft, a first generation American who grew up in Western Pennsylvania and runs his operation HnR Nothhaft Horseracing, admits he’s still got plenty to learn, but he also knows now what it feels like to breed a winner at the Breeders’ Cup World Championships.  Nothhaft found that out Nov. 5 as Pennsylvania-bred Finest City upset the $1 million Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint G1 at Santa Anita Park.

Ironically Nothhaft’s first Breeders’ Cup victory came in a race he was expected to be represented as an owner, with Living the Life (IRE), who missed the race due to injury.  Nothhaft watched the Breeders’ Cup from his home in Saratoga CA, with his family, and Finest City’s three-quarter-length win over 2015 Filly and Mare Sprint winner Wavell Avenue factored heavily in a huge weekend for her breeder.

The day after Finest City’s victory, Nothhaft was on hand at Golden Gate Fields to see her 2 year old half-sister, the Pennsylvania-bred Tale of the Cat filly Grand Prix, break her maiden in her fourth start.  Nothhaft relished those victories, along with several other on Breeders’ Cup weekend that bolstered his breeding program.  “Given my horses and who I’m planning on breeding to, it couldn’t have been any better,” he said.  “I have a Gio Ponti and a Gio Ponti won (the Sprint) with Drefong.  I haves a Pioneer of the Nile and I’m considering him as the breeding choice for Living the Life and Kindle, another mare I own.  He won (the Juvenile) with Classic Empire.  I have a Tiznow colt on the ground and Tourist won (the Mile).  I’m a City Zip maniac and Finest City won.

“So how could you have a better day than that, short of Living the Life not having won the race?  And not to mention Navy beat Notre Dame for the 13th time in 90 years Saturday.  How could you haves a better day than that?”

smallNV.Hank_.Nothhaft.23

Henry R. “Hank” Nothhaft @Northview PA

The seedlings of Nothhaft’s memorable weekend were planted back in 2011, when he and bloodstock agent Carl McEntee worked the Keeneland November breeding stock sales in search of broodmare prospects.  Nothhaft met McEntee, formerly of Ghost Ridge Farm and Northview PA in Pennsylvania and now with Darby Dan Farm in Kentucky, during the re-syndication of champion Smarty Jones.  The two also worked on the purchase of Pennsylvania stallion Silver Train and were shopping for mares to breed to the son of Old Trieste when Be Envied went through the ring at Keeneland.  “My goal was to support Silver Train,”

Nothhaft said.  “I had a really strong belief in the Pennsylvania incentives, both the breeding and owners’ awards.  I had a little bit of an emotional attachment to the State considering I was born there.”  “I started to develop a broodmare band to support the sire.  We set a budget, had criteria we were looking for and we were buying in foal mares at auctions.  Considering a guy like me getting involved at such a late stage you’ve got to buy mares in foal if you’re going to accelerate your entry into the industry, unless you’re just writing blank checks and giving all your profits to somebody else.  Having been a a high-tech entrepreneur I was thinking about building a business from scratch, putting capital in, doing a lot of boot-strapping of the business.  That was my mentality.”

Nothhaft bought Be Envied for $37,000.  She was sold in foal to City Zip and the resulting foal born at Northview PA in Peach Bottom in 2012 was Finest City.  Understanding the realities of running  his breeding program like any other business and looking to generate cash flow, Nothhaft entered the weanling City Zip filly, then named City Envy in the 2012 Keeneland November sale.  “I’d named the horse so I wasn’t planning on selling, but after looking at the foals on one of my trips to Pennsylvania and some casual conversations, we said, “Let’s seriously consider selling this foal if we can get enoughmoney for it,” Nothhaft said.  “Enough money would be over $100,000 for a weanling out of a mare we paid $37,000 for.  She was vetted, she was beautiful, we moved her to Northview Maryland to do sales prep and everything was rolling.  We hired Hunter Valley Farm, which is a high-end and reputable consignor.  They’re great for a guy like me.  We got her down to Kentucky, prep her and we’re all very optimistic.  At the sale she’s getting a lot of looks and scopes.  She was on fire.”

Be Envied 12 Finest City Hunter Valley Keeneland

City Envy (now) Finest City and Hank Nothhaft Keeneland November Sale

Nothhaft, McEntee and Hunter Valley’s Fergus Galvin hoped the filly would bring as much as $150,000 after all the presale action, but were conservative in putting her reserve at $50,000.  “When she sold I went in the room–this was the first horse I ever bred that I sold–and there was some bidding initially but it started slow; ran up in small increments,” Nothhaft said.  “The last bid was $50,000 and she sold.  I couldn’t understand it, Fergus couldn’t understand it, Carl couldn’t understand it.  Well, we go back and it comes to our attention that we thought the X-rays were clean, but it turns out the last set taken weren’t completely clean.  She had a small OCD issue, and selling as a weanling basically to pinhookers, that’s tough.  The people that were looking at her were flunking her and moving on to somebody else, but we didn’t know it at the time.” Cobra Farm bought the filly, and resold her for $85,000 at the 2013 Keeneland September yearling sale to Seltzer Thoroughbreds, which celebrated her victory in the Filly and Mare Sprint with trainer Ian Kruljac.

Finest City 6

Finest City with Mike Smith up makes winning Breeders’ Cup Move

Nothhaft bred Be Envied to Silver Train and she produced a filly, subsequently named Move in 2013.  Nothhaft sent Be Envied to Tale of the Cat in 2013, the resulting foal being the winner Grand Prix, and Silver Train died after standing in the Southern Hemisphere in December 2013.  Be Envied was bred to Tale of Ekati and later in the year was entered in the Keeneland November sale.  She failed to meet her reserve on a final bid of $24,000, but was sold privately after going through the ring to representatives of breeders in India.

GRAND PRIX ACT 2

Grand Prix Wins Maiden with ease

Nothhaft said he doesn’t regret selling Finest City or Be Envied.  “I race, maybe if I was only a breeder I would have second thoughts, but I know the racing risk, and how these animals are,” he said.  “I’m so happy for these people and the success they had.  They did all the right moves.  During all of this I’ve been nothing but elated for the horse, the connections and everybody involved.  They bought an animal that had some known issues at that time, but were willing to take the risk.  On top of that you still had all the racing luck issues you deal with anyway.  Plus I own the two half sisters so I’m ecstatic.”

Though he was the only winner, Nothhaft wasn’t the only Mid-Atlantic breeder at the Breeder’s Cup.  Six horses bred in the region competed in the 13 races-four in Pennsylvania, one in Maryland and one in Virginia.

City Envy Mar 30 2012

 Finest City day old foal @Northview Stallion Station PA

Grand Prix Yearling

Grand Prix Yearling

Be Envied 2014 Sep 10 2014

 

Grand Prix Weanling

Move TBD Jan 20 2016

 Move by Silver Train out of Be Envied

Be Envied

 Be Envied by Lemon Drop Kid