First-crop sires: State-bred winners keep Maximus Mischief hot

September 19th, 2023 will follow prominent first-crop sires whose two-year-olds are hitting the track this season. This installment is the second on 2018 Remsen (G2) winner Maximus Mischief.

One month has passed since we introduced Maximus Mischief as the early leader among first-crop sires of 2023. It’s safe to say he remains a dominant force among young stallions.

During the last month, Maximus Mischief has picked up seven new winners to maintain his leadership in two key categories: number of winners sired (19) and total progeny earnings ($1,100,532 as of Sept. 18, according to sire rankings compiled by

To put these numbers in perspective, no other 2023 first-crop sire has cracked the $1 million mark in progeny earnings, and none have sired more than a dozen winners. Maximus Mischief is doing his best to emulate his own sire, Into Mischief, a four-time leading North American sire who is well on his way to secure a fifth straight title in 2023.

Many state-bred maiden winners

Maximus Mischief hasn’t seen any of his runners win or place in stakes during the last month, but maiden special weight winners have been numerous, giving Maximus Mischief a plethora of possible future stakes horses.

State-bred winners have been common among Maximus Mischief’s recent winners. On Sept. 17 at Gulfstream Park, the third time was the charm for Miss Sayely, who bounced back from a couple of career-opening defeats to smash a seven-furlong contest for Florida-bred fillies by 11 lengths in 1:24.97.

Persistence likewise paid off for Cel’s Star, an Iowa-bred filly who shrugged off four defeats to win her fifth start by 4 1/4 lengths. The event in question was a 5 1/2-furlong maiden special weight for Iowa-bred fillies contested on Sept. 1 at Prairie Meadows, and the winning time was 1:06.53.

Glengarry won by an even larger margin when tackling a six-furlong sprint for Iowa-bred juveniles on Aug. 28 at Prairie Meadows, leading all the way to dominate by 5 3/4 lengths in 1:12.65.

Blowout victories seem to be common among the progeny of Maximus Mischief, and his New York-bred son Dancing Mischief was tons the best in an off-the-turf maiden special weight contested over one mile at Saratoga on Aug. 18. After tracking the pace, Dancing Mischief seized command to win by seven lengths in 1:41.16 over a muddy track.

No fewer than 17 of Maximus Mischief’s 19 winners have achieved their victories on dirt. An exception is Ms. Tart, who won a 5 1/2-furlong turf sprint for Virginia-restricted fillies on Aug. 24 at Colonial Downs. After rallying to win by three lengths in 1:03.31, Ms. Tart stepped up sharply in class and distance for the one-mile Natalma (G1) over the Woodbine grass course, where she finished 12th as a 58-1 longshot.

Unrestricted winners shine too

But for all the success Maximus Mischief’s progeny have enjoyed in state-restricted races, they’re also achieving wins in unrestricted races. At Hawthorne on Sept. 3, Steeler Mischief proved narrowly best in a five-furlong maiden special weight, charging from fourth to first in the final furlong to prevail by a neck in :59.38.

Irish Maxima was more decisive when winning her debut in a 5 1/2-furlong contest for fillies on Aug. 22 at Parx Racing. After opening up a four-length early lead, she bore out and gave up most of her advantage before recovering to draw off and score by 2 3/4 lengths in 1:08.11.

Irish Maxima was more professional in a $62,500-$50,000 allowance optional claimer on Sept. 16 at Pimlico, leading all the way to dominate by 6 3/4 lengths under a hand ride. By completing the six-furlong sprint in 1:12.37, Irish Maxima brought her record to a perfect 2-for-2, suggesting a jump into stakes company could be next on the horizon for this promising John Servis trainee.