Steal My Kisses storms home to win the Listed Thoroughbred Club Merson Cooper Stakes (Racing Photos)
It was a game win. Surging to the lead by the 400m mark in Saturday’s Listed Thoroughbred Club Merson Cooper Stakes at Sandown, the debutant, Steal My Kisses, fought on strongly when challenged and seemed to have plenty in the tank as she ran out a three quarter length victor. Impressive.
Bill Frost, who bred and races the I Am Invincible filly with wife Pat, daughter Cass and son-in-law Anthony Ballard, was ecstatic with the win and dares to dream that Steal My Kisses can now follow up with a $1.5 million Group One Blue Diamond in February.
Frost is a long-time follower of racing, but really upped the ante around 18 years ago when he became involved in ownership and breeding under the family’s Pendant Equine banner: cheering home some very good horses during that time.
Dual Group One winning mare, Zarita was one, while Ballet Society – granddam of Steal My Kisses – was a 4-time Group winner for the Frost clan.
However, in Frost’s estimation, it’s unlikely any of them were tougher than his latest stakes winner.
“When she (Steal My Kisses) was only a few weeks old, she got a severe kick in the head and the whole side of her face was paralysed,” Frost recalls. “She found it really hard to suckle but with top class care from Widden staff, she persisted and managed to pull through. The filly was never going to be a sale horse though and that’s why we are racing her.
“The Mitchell brothers of Yarraman Park – Harry and Arthur – also know how grateful I was when they gave Pendant Equine a return service after The Fairy’s Kiss slipped well into the season.
“Steal My Kisses went straight from the paddock to the breaker and then on to (trainer) Mick (Price) and now here she is winning a stakes race on debut. Tough as.
“Steal My Kisses is heading for a short let up and will come back in time for the Blue Diamond Preludes/Previews … and, fingers crossed, a start in the Blue Diamond.”
Steal My Kisses is one of six juveniles for the Pendant Equine operation, while there are nine in work overall – all with Price – along with five broodmares.
“Unfortunately, Zarita died a couple of years back, but a couple of our mares are from that family,” Frost points out. “I don’t have any daughters out of Ballet Society, but Steal My Kisses’s win on Saturday sorts that problem.”
It really is a family affair for the Frosts, although daughter, Cass, wasn’t at Sandown on Saturday … with good reason.
“Cass had a little girl last week – grandchild No. 4 – but she’s always taken an active role, as has her husband Anthony,” Frost adds. “Cass has a great eye for horses and we usually select two or three fillies at sales annually to race and to build up our broodmare band.
“We won’t be selling anything in 2019 but we have three nice foals on the ground that will be heading to sales the following year.”
The Frosts also raced the dam of Steal My Kisses – The Fairy’s Kiss – whose career highlights included a close second to subsequent Group One winner Platelet in the Group Three Thoroughbred Club Stakes and a fourth, beaten a length, in the Listed Typhoon Tracy.
After producing Butch Kissidy, a 5-time winner in Australia and Macau and the maiden, Abraded, Steal My Kisses was The Fairy’s Kiss final foal for the Frosts who sold the mare – in foal to Smart Missile – to Aquis Farm and Julian Blaxland’s Blue Sky Bloodstock for $100,000 at the 2017 Magic Millions National Broodmare Sale.
The resultant Smart Missile colt, according to Aquis Farm, will be sold via the Supreme Thoroughbreds draft at the 2019 Inglis Melbourne Premier Yearling Sale, while The Fairy’s Kiss produced a Choisir filly this spring and is currently in foal to Divine Prophet – the Caulfield Guineas winning son of Choisir whose oldest progeny are foals.