Not For Love
Maryland’s Leading Thoroughbred Sire Retires
(first appeared in the May 2015 issue of The Equiery)
As previously reported in the April issue of The Equiery, Northview Stallion Station in Chesapeake City retired Maryland’s leading sire, Not For Love, from stud on March 19. The facility’s veterinarian Dr. Jayson Layfield reported that the 25-year-old stallion has a reproductive hematoma that would not heal fast enough to consider going forward with breedings this late in the season. Since 1996, when Not For Love entered Northview Stallion Station’s breeding program, the sire has left his mark not only on the Thoroughbred racing industry but on the sport horse world as well.
Breeding a Legend
Not For Love was foaled in 1990 in Kentucky by breeder Ogden Mills Phipps of Phipps Stable. He is a son of Mr. Prospector out of Dance Number, with Raise A Native as his sire’s sire and Northern Dancer as his dam’s sire.
Raise A Native is by the great Native Dancer, who stood in Maryland at the Vanderbilt’s Sagamore Farm. Native Dancer was the Champion Two-Year-Old Colt in 1952, Champion Three-Year-Old Colt in 1953 and Champion Older Male in 1954. He was inducted into the Racing Hall of Fame in 1963 and was considered one of the most dominant sires of the second half of the 20th century before he died from colic when he was 17 years old.
On Mr. Prospector’s dam’s side, there is another great sire who hailed from Maryland, Nashua, as Mr. Prospector’s dam’s sire. Nashua raced out of Belair Stud and earned over a million dollars on the track. He finished second in the 1955 Kentucky Derby and then went on to win the Preakness and Belmont Stakes. He was Champion Two-Year-Old Colt in 1954, Champion Three-Year-Old Colt in 1955 and was also Horse of the Year in 1955. The Woodward Estate sold Nashua in 1955 for a record $1,252,200 to a syndicate headed by Leslie Combs II. The stallion died at Spendthrift Farm (Kentucky) in 1982. Nashua was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1965.
A Racing Start
Shug McGaughey initially trained Not For Love before transferring him to H. Graham Motion’s stables in Maryland. Richard Golden, his current owner and owner of Northview Stallion Station, purchased him as a five-year-old. In his 29 starts, Not For Love earned $178,870 with six wins, seven places and five shows over four seasons of racing.
Although his own race record may not seem as spectacular as those of his ancestors, it is as a stallion that Not For Love really made his mark.
Sire of Track Champions
Not for Love has been Maryland’s leading Thoroughbred sire for the past 12 years. He was also the leading North American sire standing outside of Kentucky for eight consecutive years. He leads all Maryland sires by lifetime progeny earnings, lifetime juvenile earnings and is the all-time leading sire by Maryland Million wins with offspring having won 32 Maryland Million races.
Eighttofasttocatch (Not For Love x Too Fast Too Catch) is Not For Love’s most recent millionaire son. He is now being retrained as an event horse. ©Jim McCue/Maryland Jockey Club
Not for Love entered Northview Stallion Station’s breeding program in 1996 and made his mark right away with his first crop, which included the $2 million juvenile winner La Salle Street. With 16 crops to race, Not For Love has sired at least one stakes winner per crop with 79 stakes winners in total. His runners, including the recently retired millionaire son Eighttofasttocatch, have earned in excess of $68.6 million.
Eighttofasttocatch is out of the mare Too Fast Too Catch and was bred in Maryland by Dark Hallow Farm and Herringswell Stables. Sylvia E. Heft owns the 2006 chestnut gelding who was trained on the track by Tim Keefe. He won the Maryland Million Classic as a seven-year-old and again when he was eight. He also finished second in the Pimlico Special at age seven. Eighttofasttocatch is now being retrained as an eventer by Rumsey Keefe at Avalon Farm in Sandy Spring and is entered in this year’s Thoroughbred Makeover in Kentucky.
Not For Love is also the broodmare sire for 2014 Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes winner California Chrome, who just won the Eclipse Award for Horse of the Year.
Celtic Katie (Posse x Katie’s Love, Not For Love) won the 2014 Geisha Stakes and is currently racing as a six-year-old. ©Jim McCue/Maryland Jockey Club
The Lewis Family Racing Stables and Dr. Fred Lewis own successful racehorses with Not For Love lines. Katie’s Love is a 2002 mare by Not For Love out of Fabulous Vee. She won the Shine Again Stakes at Pimlico as a six-year-old and finished second in the Geisha Stakes at Laurel that same season. She was bred in Maryland by the late Brice Ridgely and was the 2003 Grand Champion at the Maryland Horse Breeders Association Yearling Show. After 41 starts (five wins, nine places, seven shows), she retired as a broodmare at the Lewis farm with career earnings of $248,500.
One of her foals, a 2009 mare named Celtic Katie (by Posse), won the Geisha Stakes. The mare was bred by Dr. Fred Lewis and is still racing with earnings so far of $202,275 in 26 starts.
Other Not For Love notable racing offspring include Smart and Fancy, a 2003 dark bay mare out of Substitute Teacher, bred in Maryland by Dr. and Mrs. Thomas Bowman. The mare earned $814,433 on the track in over 27 starts including winning the Maryland Million Lassie as a two-year-old and the Maryland Million Oaks as a three-year-old.
Cuba, a 2001 bay colt out of Shaunlee, earned $792,694 on the track and won the Maryland Million Classic when he was seven. He currently is retired to stud at Royal Wax Farm in Chestertown, Maryland.
Sport Horse Success
Not For Love offspring have also found success in the sport horse world in a variety of disciplines including cleaning up in the show ring, dominating cross-country courses in eventing and being steady foxhunters.
Jen Preston and Lions Share of Love (Lion Hearted x Love is Kind, Not For Love) have found success in the hunter ring.
Jen Preston of White Hall owns Lions Share of Love, whose dam’s sire is Not For Love. The 2010 filly is by Lion Hearted out of Love is Kind. Preston purchased “Ella,” as she is called around the barn, last April when the filly’s trainer up at Fair Hill decided she did not like the track surface enough to pursue a racing career. Preston gave Ella a few months off to “just grow up and be a baby” before starting her retraining over the winter.
“When I started her back up, I couldn’t believe the brain this mare had! She never put a foot wrong, never got strong, never tense or nervous, just packed me around like an old lesson horse,” she remarked adding, “She took to jumping like a fish to water and hasn’t looked back!” Preston commented that Ella has a naturally beautiful jump that seems to be a trait of Not For Love babies.
Ella made her debut in the horse show world this past March at the Thoroughbred Celebration held at the Virginia Horse Center. This show is part of the Thoroughbred Alliance Show Series, which holds competitions in Maryland, Virginia, Pennsylvania and Kentucky. The show was a success with Ella earning the Gulfstream Junior/Amateur 2’3’’ Hunter championship with a first, second and fourth over fences and a second in the hack class. “She has such a puppy dog personality and is the sweetest mare in the barn. She’s athletic, willing, kind, quiet and talented to boot. What more could you ask for?” Preston stated after the show. “I now know what all the fuss is about these Not For Love babies and I’m so glad to have found myself owning a mare with him in her pedigree.”
©High Time Photography
Michelle Warro and Not Without Me (Not For Love x Silver Nova) have competed through the Int level in eventing and are looking to complete a two-star.
Michelle Warro of Dodon Farm in Davidsonville is actively competing two Not For Love geldings in eventing. Not Without Me (a.k.a. Banks) is a 2007 gelding out of Silver Nova. After a short career on the track, Banks came to Dodon as a training project of the barn manager at the time. “She picked him up because of his breeding. She had a Not For Love prior to him who was an awesome jumper and looked very similar to Banks so she figured she should take a chance on Banks, too,” Warro explained. “I remember setting rails for her the first time she put him through a gymnastic grid. He was a jumping savant!” After riding him for a sales video, Warro was in love and told the owner not to put up the video, as she wanted to buy him for herself.
Warro purchased him in December 2011 and by June 2012, he was competing successfully at the Training level and was qualified to move up to Preliminary. “Unfortunately he ended up with a massive splint in July and basically had the rest of the year off,” she said. By September of 2013, Warro was putting Banks back in work and he was competing again in March of 2014. After only one more Training level event, she moved him up to Preliminary. “It was funny that for having all that time off he didn’t lose anything jumping. He picked it back up right where he left off.” The pair did a few more Preliminary events and moved up to Intermediate in the fall. “He took to it easily. He did it like it was just another prelim. Easy breezy!” They ended the 2014 season with a fourth place finish at the CCI* in Kentucky.
This spring, Warro and Banks completed their first CIC** at The Fork and earned a qualifying score towards their first CCI**. “We’re hoping to do Jersey Fresh in May,” she said. “He is a total athlete, which I have heard the Not For Loves are. He is super focused and loves his job.”
Warro’s other eventing partner, Strangerinthenight, a 2006 gelding out of Foolish Kisses, was a very successful racehorse earning $52,455 in only 10 starts. He did not start racing until he was five because as Warro explained, “as a youngster he found it funny to dump his exercise riders and run off back to the barns.” These antics led to a variety of injuries as well. The McGinnes’ family of Thornmar Farm bought Stranger after his owner/breeder passed away, and put him in training with Tim Keefe.
“When he came to Dodon, none of us thought he would amount to much with all his injuries and his silly personality,” Warro said. “But over time, he proved us wrong and showed us all just what a true athlete can accomplish no matter what odds are against him.” Warro started competing him last fall at Novice and moved him up to Training this spring. “They aren’t perfect and they do question things but once they get a concept, they are unstoppable and have a work ethic second to none. I absolutely adore my team of Not For Loves!”
Love Treasures (Not For Love x Ten Treasures) is learning to jump at All In Stride.
Rachael Lively’s Not For Love gelding is currently in training at All In Stride in Parkton. Love Treasures (out of Ten Treasures) was bred and raced by William G. Christmas in Monkton until he was seven. “He has the best disposition. Picked up jumping very quickly and has already been to two horse shows where he has not missed a ribbon over fences,” Lively stated.
©Rough Coat Photo
Bev Strauss found Not Up For Love (Not For Love x Up We Go) at a New Holland sale and is now retraining him for the show ring and eventing.
Bev Strauss of MidAtlantic Horse Rescue (MAHR) caught sight of a big grey Thoroughbred at a New Holland sale several years ago. The rider who was trotting him back and forth caught her eye and nodded at her, telling her the horse seemed okay. “I bid him up above the kill price and dropped out. He sold to Camelot Sales for $650,” Strauss stated. “Afterwards we found him loose in a pen…the more I looked at him I decided he didn’t need to go to Camelot’s Wednesday night auction. We did not really have room for him at the farm but I decided to buy him anyway.”
Strauss explained that typically at this point in a racehorse’s career, Jockey Club papers are lost but when she handed over $750 for him, she was handed his papers and she saw his breeding for the first time: by Not For Love out of Up We Go, by Waquoit. “We knew it was Chesapeake City all the way…I turned the folded papers over and saw he was actually one of the last bred and foaled by Mrs. DuPont at Woodstock Farm before she died,” Strauss said. “That is the farm were MAHR was based at the time! Not for Love and Waquoit have always been among my favorite stallions and here was a horse with both lines.” The gelding’s name was Not Up For Love.
After a bit of drama trying to load him on the trailer, the grey gelding returned home to Woodstock Farm. Strauss did a bit more digging and found out more about his racing career and chatted with more and more people who remembered him. Strauss decided to adopt him herself from MAHR and named him Drifter after the gorgeous gray that Clint Eastwood rode in “High Plains Drifter.”
“He is always very well behaved under saddle and one of the easiest, most athletic horses I have ever had,” Strauss commented. “His attitude has come full circle although he still arbitrarily opts to refuse to go at times, whether it is a water crossing or a bank or trappy trail, so our event career has been put on hold until we figure that out.” Strauss is preparing him for the TASS competitions instead this year. “I love a challenge and Drifter is well worth it. My husband adores him and gets on with him very well,” she added. “I always wonder what would have happened if we hadn’t bought him that day!”
Powered By Love (Not For Love x Mystic Dance) is showing his versatility as an event horse, foxhunter and hunter pace horse.
Powered By Love, a 2006 gelding out of Mystic Dance, has had a successful career eventing, foxhunting and competing in hunter paces. “He has an awesome personality and is a huge ham,” said Amanda Weber of Baldwin, who competes him for owners Betty McCue and Evelyn Martin. “He is an extremely brave and willing horse.”
For Ivymount (Not For Love x Kattebuck) and Laura Schlicht at a hunter trials.
“Smart, athletic, confident, honest and fun… just some of the attributes of this terrific gelding, For Ivymount,” said owner and trainer Laura Schlicht. Camden (barn name) was foaled in 2006 and is out of Kattebuck. He only had three starts on the track but earned just under $7,000 and is now showing in the hunter ring earning top ribbons. Schlicht also competes him in hunter trials and hunter paces. “Eye-catching, a great mover and super jumper,” she said adding, “Talent abounds in these Not For Love babies!”