Speed is clearly a strong suit for Lebda, who employed forwardly-placed tactics to win the Miracle Wood S. and Private Terms S. during the winter at Laurel Park.
|Hook and Ladder|
With a 3-for-4 record on the Maryland circuit, Lebda looms as an intriguing local contender for the Oct. 3 Preakness (G1) at Pimlico, though from a pedigree perspective it’s fair to question whether Lebda is cut out for handling classic distances.
At first glance, it’s hard to knock the top half of Lebda’s pedigree. He’s a son of Raison d’Etat, who placed in the Discovery H. (G3) and Curlin S. racing 1 1/8 miles. A son of stamina influence A.P. Indy out of the seven-time Grade 1-winning router Sightseek, Raison d’Etat boasts a pedigree stuffed with stamina from top to bottom.
But so far, Raison d’Etat hasn’t been passing on his stamina at stud. Prior to Lebda, his best foal was Bon Raison, a stakes-winning sprinter who most notably placed in the Tom Fool H. (G3) going 6 furlongs. Raison d’Etat’s progeny win at an average distance of just 6.8 furlongs, suggesting Lebda may have inherited more speed than stamina from his sire.
Nor is Raison d’Etat likely to receive a dose of stamina from the damside of his pedigree. He’s the first starter produced by the Hook and Ladder mare Lenders Way, who placed in a trio of sprint stakes for New York-breds. Her affinity for dashing short distances isn’t surprising since Hook and Ladder was a two-time graded stakes-winning sprinter whose progeny win at an average distance of just 5.8 furlongs.
As a broodmare sire, Hook and Ladder has reiterated his status as a speed influence. His daughters have produced champion female sprinter La Verdad, Charles Town Oaks (G3) winner Hot City Girl, and the ultra-durable Woodford (G3) winner Amelia’s Wild Ride, all of them best sprinting 7 furlongs or less.
Having won a pair of stakes races over a mile or farther, Lebda has already outrun his pedigree in many respects. But tackling extended route distances could be a much more difficult challenge for this speed-oriented youngster.