by Dave Briggs
As far as life-changers go, they don’t come much bigger than what Sportswriter did for trainer Casie Coleman.
“There were a lot of horses to get to him, but the one that changed my life would definitely be Sportswriter,” Coleman said. “It is just the fact that I own a big chunk of him myself and what he did on the racetrack, the money he won, the races he won and the exposure he gave me that led to getting more good horses after him.”
Coleman and partners Steve Calhoun and Ross Warriner purchased Sportswriter for $50,000 at the 2008 Harrisburg yearling sale.
The son of Artsplace—Precious Beauty earned nearly $1.65 million with an 8-2-1 record in 14 starts, including the $1 million Metro Pace at Mohawk in 2009 and the 2010 Pepsi North America Cup at Mohawk that carried a purse of $1.5 million that year.
“Beyond the money aspect of it, now that he’s gone to stallion, what he’s generated as a stallion it’s just totally changed my life, for sure,” Coleman said. “I was able to buy a house in Florida and he’s one of the reasons, too, that I was able to cut back. I don’t have to train nearly the amount of horses I used to. I’ve just cut way back on my numbers now and I am just focusing, basically, on ones that I own. I’m just enjoying it and having fun, instead of it being a madhouse with 100 horses. Because of him, I was able to slow thing down and just concentrate on stakes horses. I take the winter off now. I don’t race overnights. I just do two and three-year-olds and prep them for the summer. All of that is pretty much because of him.”
Sportswriter, with just three crops of offspring of racing age, has sired the winners of more than $8 million. His success also led Coleman to another stakes-star-turned-stallion.
“The year after (Sportswriter) was Betterthancheddar and because of Sportswriter I was able to buy in on Betterthancheddar (a winner of more than $1.6 million). Now I own a piece of Betterthancheddar, also. He kind of did the same footsteps as Sportswriter. He did really well racing and he was fortunate enough to go to stallion and now his first babies will sell here this coming summer. People are already training them in Australia — they’re a little bit older over there because he stood there first — and they say they love them. They actually told me when I was over there on vacation that they like their Betterthancheddars better than their Sportswriters. They’re already very high on Sportswriters. It will be interesting to see what happens, but, again, it was because of Sportswriter that I could get Betterthancheddar and everything kind of snowballed.”
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