CHESTERTOWN, Md.--Still Having Fun won three stakes, including the G2 Woody Stephens at Belmont Park and placed third in the G1 Malibu Stakes at Santa Anita to be named Maryland's champion 3-year-old male and champion sprinter, and his accomplishments resulted in a big reward for his breeders, Mr. and Mrs. Charles McGinnes and Tim Keefe.
"After winning the G2 Woody Stephens on Belmont Day, the breeding manager at Juddmonte, where Arrogate stands, called, and he asked if we wanted to breed his dam, Casual Kiss, to Arrogate," said Mrs. (Cynthia) McGinnes. "They only breed Arrogate to 150 mares, and 50 of those slots they use for their own mares, and he had at least 500 applications."
Arrogate won the Travers and the Breeder's cup Classic in 2016 and the Dubai World Cup in 2017, and he is by Unbridled's Song, and Still Having Fun''s grand-sire on the female side is Dehere, so Casual Kiss was obviously a good nick with the Undridled's Song line.
"Casual Kiss is down at Juddmonte now," McGinnes said. "We have Still Having Fun's mother and two sisters, Honey Bun and Scoot, who's by Scat Daddy. This will make their yearlings more valuable at sales."
IT ALL BEGAN when Dr Philip Torsney the owner of a mare named Foolish Kisses, who had won the Miss Preakness Stakes, got terminally ill, so he gave Foolish Kisses to the McGinnes.
"We bred her, and she had at least four foals that were stakes winners," said McGinnes. "Another foal, Bushel and a Peck, had a cyst in her foot and never raced, so we got her back. We bred her to Dehere, and her first foal was Casual Kiss."
"Casual Kiss brought $20,000 as a yearling," said McGinnes. "Arnold Heft bought her, and Tim Keefe trained her. She injured her pelvis in a starting gate before she ever ran. They gave her time off, but she was never sound. Mr. Heft was in a nursing home, and Tim was trying to place his horses, so he asked if we'd take her back.
"We didn't know if Casual Kiss could deliver a foal, so we wanted a small foal. We bred her to Scipion, because he got small foals, and her first foal was Honey Bun.
"We had a breeding share to Old Fashioned, who is by Unbridled's Song, and he Had been sold for the next season to South America , so we sent Casual Kiss to him, and that foal was Still Having Fun.
"We sold Still Having Fun as a yearling in Maryland, and Tim came to look at him because of his having trained Casual Kiss, and he bought her for Terp Racing for $12,000. Now he's won over $516,000 and is a graded stakes winner.
"Tim sent him out to California, and he was third in the G1 Malibu Stakes, so now he's G1 placed, too," said McGinnes.
G1-WINNING juvenile Knicks Go took home top honors as Maryland-bred Horse of the Year and champion 2-year-old male at the second annual Renaissance Awards, which recognizes excellence in Thoroughbred racing and breeding in Maryland in the past year.
The event was held on Tuesday evening, Feb. 12, at the American Visionary Art Museum in Baltimore.
Owned by KRA Stud Farm and trained by Ben Colebrook, Knicks Go was the richest Maryland-bred runner of 2018 in a year in which he captured theG1 Claiborne Breeders’ Futurity at Keeneland, a Win & You’re In race for the $2 million G1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile.
In the Breeders’ Cup, the colt took the lead heading into the Churchill Downs stretch and gave way late to finish second to Eclipse Award winner Game Winner.
Also counting a third in the Arlington-Washington Futurity among his six starts, Knicks Go earned $672,515.
Knicks Go was sold as a weanling at Keeneland for $40,000 by breeder Angie Moore, who owns and operates GreenMount Farm in Glyndon, Md., with her daughter Sabrina.
The Korea Racing Authority purchased the gray/roan colt the following year at Keeneland for $87,000.
The son of Paynter is out of Maryland-bred Kosmo’s Buddy, a five-time winner who defeated older males as a 3-year-old in the 2008 Maryland Million Turf Sprint Handicap, as well as scoring in that season’s Crank It Up Stakes going short on the turf at Monmouth Park.
With an additional 12 stakes placings, the gray daughter of Outflanker earned $298,095 in 37 starts.
Knicks Go is her third winner, and first stakes winner, from four foals of racing age.
Also presented during the Renaissance Awards were the annual breeder, stallion and broodmare of the year awards.
Sycamore Hall Thoroughbreds (Richard L. Golden) was named breeder of the year; Northview Stallion Station’s Great Notion earned his third consecutive stallion title, and Charles and Cynthia McGinnes’ Casual Kiss, the dam of 2018 Maryland-bred champion 3-year-old male and champion sprinter Still Having Fun, was honored as broodmare.
The champion 2-year-old filly was Brucia La Terra, a bay by El Padrino out of Happy Refrain, by Not For Love who was bred by Sallyellen M. Hurst and Hugh H. Hurst, owned by William M. Ferrone and trained by Barclay Tagg.
The champion 3-year-old male and champion sprinter was Still Having Fun, a bay colt by Old Fashionedot of Casual Kiss, by Dehere, who was bred by Mr. and Mrs. Charles McGinnes and Tim Keefe, owned by Gary Barber, Wachtel Stable and Terp Racing LLC and trained by Timothy L. Keefe.
The champion 3-year-old filly was Blamed, a bay by Blame out of Salsa Star, by Giant’s Causeway who was bred by Sagamore Farm, owned by Cleber J. Massey and trained by Joel Marr and William I. Mott.
The champion older male was Laki , a chestnut gelding by Cuba out of Truthful Dutch, by Swear by Dixie who was bred by Tom Michaels and Lorna Baker, owned by Hillside Equestrian Meadows and trained by Damon R. Dilodovico.
The champion older female and champion turf runner was I’m Betty G. a bay mare by Into Mischief out of Lady in Ermine, by Honour and Glory who was bred by Carol Kaye and Boyce Stable. owned by Three Diamonds Farm and trained by Michael J. Maker.
The champion steeplechaser was Dawn Wall, a bay mare by Not For Love out of Guelph, by Sky Classic who was0bBred by Mary Voss, owned by The Fields Stable and trained by Elizabeth Voss.