by Dave Briggs
Blue Chip Farm owner Tom Grossman doesn’t want to BS anyone about the 45 yearlings it is selling at the Standardbred Horse Sales Company auction that begins Monday in Harrisburg, PA.
“To be honest, I think I’m missing the sales topper. It just didn’t line up that way, but I have a very, very consistent and solid group through the middle,” he said.
“We have three or four Courtly Choices, each one better than the next. I’m excited about them. I think that stallion really has a lot of his father, Art Major, in him and they are all extremely attractive, correct horses and I think they’ll sell well.
“Similarly, E L Titan has been much better than people realize or thought and I have two exceptional ones, particularly Hip 200 (Valkyrie Blue Chip), an E L Titan filly out of Aurova Hanover. That mare has had three foals and I’ve all had very valid excuses. I was involved in all of them and I think that’s a sleeper, for sure.
“On the more obvious side, I have two Walner fillies (Hip 303 Valhalla Blue Chip and Hip 294 Volcanic Blue Chip) that are very different, but really, really nice individuals. There’s not a lot of Walners in Harrisburg, because most of them sold in Kentucky.
“Volcanic Blue Chip is out of Thisladysdynamite and that’s the family of Plunge Blue Chip. She’s a really stunning individual and much nicer than the first one.
“And, as always, I have four or five very solid Bettors Delights with pedigrees. None of them step out of the barn and you say, ‘Holy cow,’ but none of them you would be shocked if they were the best horse in the country, either.”
Grossman said it’s part of Bettors Delight’s strange legacy. Despite being the leading pacing sire in the history of the sport, physically many of his yearlings lack the initial “wow factor.
“But I think 20 years later that people are figuring it out. I thought his horses sold better in Lexington than they ever have before anywhere. I think through the first three or four days that he averaged $100,000, which he’s never done. Obviously, the market is better as well, but he’s never done that.”
As for new sires, Grossman is convinced “people are going to be very happy with Courtly Choice. It seems like people are much more positive on the International Monis, which we bred to and are happy about and have one particularly good individual… that’s Hip 379 (Vortex Blue Chip) and that’s a stunning individual.”