Runhappy Santa Anita Derby (G1) winner Honor A. P. moved into a historic site at Lane's End Sept. 15, the former stall of his grandsire and longtime leading sire A.P. Indy.
"That stall has been empty since Feb. 21," said Bill Farish, referring to the date A.P. Indy died peacefully on his own due to the infirmities of old age. The old warrior was 31. "This morning is the first time it's had bedding in it."
Honor A. P. now settles in, readying to contribute to a male sire line represented during the 2020 North American breeding season by 66 sons, grandsons, and great-grandsons of A.P. Indy. Several stallions from this male line share the Lane's End roster with Honor A. P., including his own sire, Honor Code .
"The resemblance (with Honor Code) is uncanny," said Farish of Honor A. P. "His running style is perhaps more like A.P. Indy than Honor Code's and has a bit more length to his stride and is maybe a tick taller."
The depth of experience Lane's End has with starting a new stallion from this male line might seem to offer some insights into structuring Honor A. P.'s first book, but Farish said over-managing a first book is never a good strategy.
"American speed-type sires complement the A.P. Indy male line … but you try not to over-manage it because you really don't know what is going to work, even when you think you do," Farish said. "City Zip we thought was going to be a six-furlong sire and he ended up getting mile-and-a-sixteenth runners on the grass, so you don't know. You try as many things as you can."
Honor A. P. is expected to open up other options for breeders than Honor Code because his dam, multiple grade 1 winner Hollywood Story, is by Wild Rush out of a Dynaformer mare. The new stallion's female side does not include any Mr. Prospector in the first five generations. By comparison, Honor Code is out of Serena's Cat, a daughter of Storm Cat and out of the Mr. Prospector daughter Serena's Tune.
"Having Wild Again on the bottom side is great because that is a bit of an outcross. We have a lot of different options with him," said Farish.
Bred by George Krikorian in Kentucky, Honor A. P. was sold to Lee and Susan Searing's C R K Stable for $850,000 at The Saratoga Sale, Fasig-Tipton's select yearling sale in New York. The colt broke his maiden in his second start by 5 1/4 lengths at 2 and immediately stamped himself as one to watch on the Kentucky Derby Presented by Woodford Reserve (G1) trail by finishing second in the San Felipe Stakes (G2) in his first start at 3. He went on to win the Santa Anita Derby in his next start, beating eventual Kentucky Derby winner Authentic by 2 3/4 lengths. He ran second in the Shared Belief Stakes in his lead-up to the rescheduled Kentucky Derby, where a wide trip throughout in the classic left him in fourth place crossing the wire. A tendon injury subsequently forced his retirement from racing with a 2-3-0 record from six starts and earnings of $532,200.
Honor A. P. will be available for inspection at Lane's End in the coming weeks. A stud fee is still to be determined.