Arrobird? Songgate? Birdarrow?! Whatever the foal is eventually called, there’s going to be definitive excitement surrounding its potential racing career. Arrogate is scheduled to breed with Songbird sometime in 2018. Talk about a clash of champions.
Songbird was purchased by Mandy Pope of Whisper Hill Farm for a whopping $9.5 million recently so the expectations are going to remain fairly high, and they should. Pope gets to decide who her new prize broodmare gets to breed with, and she’s had her sights set on the lineage running through Arrogate’s veins for quite some time.
“We all love Arrogate,” said Wayne Sweezey of Timber Town Stable, who manages Pope’s mares and foals. “She loved Arrogate when he was racing. She loved the horse. He fit Songbird genetically. We looked at Pioneerof the Nile and we thought about Pioneerof the Nile very hard, but we kept circling back around to Arrogate” Seezey affirmed. “Mandy loves Unbridled’s Song and we’re hoping Arrogate is the horse that will perpetuate his legacy.”
Arrogate is one of the most well known horses of our time, having won the 2016 Breeders’ Cup Classic in a head-to-head showdown with California Chrome. He recently began to wear down over the summer, losing three straight in the 2017 renewals of the San Diego Handicap, Pacific Classic and Breeders’ Cup Classic, the latter of which was won by Gun Runner.
That didn’t stop Arrogate from becoming the highest earning horse of all time. Wins in the 2017 Pegasus World Cup and the 2017 Dubai World Cup helped propel his earnings to a whopping $17,422,600. If he had won at this year’s Classic, he would’ve easily crested $20M mark, a target which has become a bit of a holy grail for American competitors.
Songbird may have not had as an accomplished a career as her soon-to-be mate, but she was certainly one of the most prolific of her generation. With a record of 13-2-0 and $4,692,000 in career earnings Songbird retired with just two career losses. Her first came in the 2016 Breeders’ Cup Distaff against Beholder in one of the most electrifying and thrilling races of all time, while her most recent was in the 2017 Personal Ensign which also ended up being her last.
The 2016 Breeders’ Cup Distaff is absolutely worth watching if you haven’t seen it recently.
Songbird will have a very busy schedule. Tapit is also expected to breed with the champion broodmare at some point in 2018. The list of suitors will have to pay a hefty price tag, but it will be worth it just for the chance to capture some of the magic that she showed as a competitor. We’ll check back on this story in 2020…and at least chime in during 2019 when we find out what the foal will be named. Sarrobird?