2016 Kentucky Derby Pedigrees: Creator

April 17th, 2016

Just when you thought that Tapit’s top Kentucky Derby (G1) hopefuls were already present and accounted for, along comes Creator to upset the Arkansas Derby (G1) and become his sire’s fourth major 2016 prep winner.

First there was Mohaymen in the Holy Bull (G2) and Fountain of Youth (G2), later came Lani in the UAE Derby (G2), and Cupid captured the Rebel (G2) in between. Even though Cupid came unstrung as the 4-5 Arkansas Derby favorite, Tapit was still not to be denied – so deep is his bench of 3-year-olds.

Tapit, a male-line descendant of 1977 Triple Crown star Seattle Slew, was prominent on the 2004 Derby trail himself. The Wood Memorial (G1) and Laurel Futurity (G3) winner didn’t do himself justice at Churchill Downs, however, finishing ninth behind Smarty Jones in the Run for the Roses.

But it’s been a different story at stud, where Tapit became a sensation. His very first crop included champion 2-year-old filly Stardom Bound as well as Grade 1 winners Careless Jewel, Laragh, and Testa Matta (in Japan). In the ensuing years came two more champions in Hansen and Untapable; fellow Breeders’ Cup winners Tapitsfly and Tapizar; and his establishment as an American classic sire through 2014 Belmont S. (G1) hero Tonalist and last year’s Belmont runner-up to American Pharoah, Frosted.

With his flood of high-class performers, Tapit has smashed the North American earnings record for both 2014 and 2015. His stud fee has accordingly rocketed to $300,000, live foal (stands and nurses).

While Tapit is still awaiting success in the Kentucky Derby, his sire line is responsible for two of the last three winners. Tapit’s paternal grandsire, A.P. Indy, saw his son Malibu Moon get Orb (2013). Tapit is by Pulpit, whose otherwise unheralded son Lucky Pulpit has achieved worldwide fame as the sire of California Chrome (2014).

And Tapit’s broodmare sire is 1990 Kentucky Derby-winning champion Unbridled, who has emerged as a key factor in pedigrees. The last Derby winner to sire a Derby winner (thanks to Grindstone in 1996), Unbridled is also the male-line ancestor of Mine That Bird (2009) and Triple Crown champion American Pharoah, and he is the broodmare sire of Orb.

Creator’s maternal half isn’t nearly as fashionable, but there’s no shortage of good genetic material – and stamina.

Creator is the second registered foal (but first runner) from multiple Peruvian champion Morena, who beat males in a trio of Group races from 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 miles. She also trounced fellow females in the Clasico Cesar del Rio (G3), which six years later became a “Win and You’re In” Breeders’ Cup Challenge event for the Distaff (G1).

Subsequently imported to the United States, Morena placed in five of eight outings while competing exclusively in graded company. She was twice runner-up in the Obeah (G3) at Delaware, took minor awards in the Falls City (G2) and La Troienne (G2) (to Unrivaled Belle and Rachel Alexandra) at Churchill, and garnered a US Grade 1 credit when a distant third in the Personal Ensign (G1).

Morena’s sire, Privately Held, is a Niarchos Family homebred who didn’t live up to his pedigree on the racecourse. By Private Account and out of Aviance, Privately Held is a half-brother to Denon and a full brother to Chimes of Freedom (dam of Good Journey and champion Aldebaran) from the family of 1997 Breeders’ Cup Mile (G1) supremo Spinning World. Yet Privately Held was barely stakes class himself, scraping into black-type only by placing in a minor event at the Meadowlands. Hence his export to Peru, where he’s transmitting ability to a raft of local champions including Horse of the Year Lady Shatzi and Private Affair, an eventual stakes winner at Del Mar.

Morena’s dam, Charytin, is a daughter of 1981 Belmont winner Summing. Charytin is also responsible for Peruvian Group 3 scorer and Group 1-placed La Querella, herself the dam of Cesar del Rio winner La Consulta. Since La Consulta is by Privately Held, she counts as a three-quarter sister to Morena.

The family’s fortunes were revived after being transplanted to Peru, but further back in the last century, the female line had come up with such performers as 1928 Kentucky Oaks-winning champion Easter Stockings, Toro (placegetter in the 1928 Kentucky Derby and Preakness), Brown Bud (1927 Travers winner), Aneroid (1937 Suburban), Corn Husker (1953 Santa Anita H.), and the useful handicapper Good Goods (third in the 1934 Belmont).


Pedigree information courtesy of Brisnet.com.

Photo courtesy of Oaklawn Park/Coady Photography.