Fappiano

Nerud bred to the venerable Mr. Prospector but one time. It was June of 1976 when John called over to Butch Savin to breed Killaloe to the son of Raise a Native. “John, it’s June, the breeding shed I’d closed,” said Savin on the other end of the phone. “God dammit Butch, you must be making too much money, now open that shed and I’m sending my mare over,” replied the insistent Nerud. The phone call sums up in a microcosm the essence of John Nerud. When the industry zinged, he zagged. His instincts were impeccable, or as he put it: “I always knew when to slice the mellon”. He was the luckiest man alive because he made his own luck.

Named for long-time New York Times sportswriter Joseph C. Nichols (1905–1984), who was born Giuseppe Carmine Fappiano. Bred in Florida, Fappiano was out of the mare Killaloe, a daughter of Hall of Fame inductee Dr. Fager. His sire was the very important Mr. Prospector, a North American Leading Sire and perennial leading broodmare sire.

Fappiano was undefeated in four starts at age two and won the six-furlong Morven Stakes in 1:08 3/5, a Meadowlands Racetrack record which still stands for that stakes event. He went on to win several important races, including the 1981 Grade I Metropolitan Handicap. However, he is best known as a sire and a sire of sires. At the end of 1981, he was retired and syndicated for a reported $300,000 per share. He stood at stud at Tartan Farm near Ocala, Florida, where he stood until the summer of 1987. He was then moved to Lane’s End Farm in Versailles, Kentucky.

Fappiano was the grandsire of two different horses that combined to win all three U.S. Triple Crown races in the same year when Real Quiet won the 1998 Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes, and Victory Gallop won the 1998 Belmont Stakes. Fappiano is also the grandsire of Peppers Pride, who holds the record for most consecutive wins at nineteen.

Occasionally something appears bearing the mark of future greatness and then is taken away before the promise is fulfilled. One such shining light was the stallion Fappiano, a 1977 son of Brilliant/Classic chef-de-race Mr. Prospector out of Killaloe, by Dr. Fager. He died at age thirteen, but from just nine crops of racing age, Fappiano sired forty-eight stakes winners from 410 foals (12%). His Grade 1 level winners include Aptostar, Cahill Road, Cryptoclearance, Defensive Play, Grand Canyon, Quiet American, Rubiano, Serape, Some Romance, Tappiano, Tasso, and Unbridled. Fappiano’s lifetime Average-Earnings Index (AEI) is an exceptional 4.52, measured against a Comparable Index of 3.02. In addition, the average earnings of his starters is an astronomical $105,000, placing him sixth among all sires with North American runners in 1997. His greatest influence today is through his son, Kentucky Derby-G1 winner Unbridled, also bred by Nerud, who is the sire of Unbridled’s Song and Quiet American. Several other influential sons include Cryptoclearance, Pentelicus, Cahill Road, Fappavalley, Rubiano, and Defensive Play also have demonstrated the ability to sire high quality runners.

Fappiano’s record as a broodmare sire is equally impressive. His daughters had produced eight percent stakes winners, among them the Grade 1 fillies Capote Belle and Storm Song. Fappiano’s AEI as a broodmare sire is an excellent 2.29, with a Comparable Index of 2.08.

To put his stud record in perspective, Fappiano’s sire statistics placed him tenth among all sires of North American runners with at least fifty lifetime foals of racing age through 1997. That’s good enough to position him between Pleasant Colony and Seattle Slew. On the broodmare sire side, he ranked fourteenth, between Hail to Reason and Round Table. Certainly this level of performance places him among the premier sires of his generation.

It’s called the genius of John Nerud.

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Nerud bred to the venerable Mr. Prospector but one time. It was June of 1976 when John called over to Butch Savin to breed Killaloe to the son of Raise a Native. “John, it’s June, the breeding shed is closed,” said Savin on the other end of the phone. “God dammit Butch, you must be making too much money, now open that shed and I’m sending my mare over,” replied the insistent Nerud. The phone call sums up in a microcosm the essence of John Nerud. When the industry zinged, he zagged. His instincts were impeccable, or as he put it: “I always knew when to slice the melon”. He was the luckiest man alive because he made his own luck.

Named for long-time New York Times sportswriter Joseph C. Nichols (1905–1984), who was born Giuseppe Carmine Fappiano. Bred in Florida, Fappiano was out of the mare Killaloe, a daughter of Hall of Fame inductee Dr. Fager. His sire was the very important Mr. Prospector, a North American Leading Sire and perennial leading broodmare sire.

Fappiano was undefeated in four starts at age two and won the six-furlong Morven Stakes in 1:08 3/5, a Meadowlands Racetrack record which still stands for that stakes event. He went on to win several important races, including the 1981 Grade I Metropolitan Handicap. However, he is best known as a sire and a sire of sires. At the end of 1981, he was retired and syndicated for a reported $300,000 per share. He stood at stud at Tartan Farm near Ocala, Florida, where he stood until the summer of 1987. He was then moved to Lane’s End Farm in Versailles, Kentucky.

Fappiano was the grandsire of two different horses that combined to win all three U.S. Triple Crown races in the same year when Real Quiet won the 1998 Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes, and Victory Gallop won the 1998 Belmont Stakes. Fappiano is also the grandsire of Peppers Pride, who holds the record for most consecutive wins at nineteen.

Occasionally something appears bearing the mark of future greatness and then is taken away before the promise is fulfilled. One such shining light was the stallion Fappiano, a 1977 son of Brilliant/Classic chef-de-race Mr. Prospector out of Killaloe, by Dr. Fager. He died at age thirteen, but from just nine crops of racing age, Fappiano sired forty-eight stakes winners from 410 foals (12%). His Grade 1 level winners include Aptostar, Cahill Road, Cryptoclearance, Defensive Play, Grand Canyon, Quiet American, Rubiano, Serape, Some Romance, Tappiano, Tasso, and Unbridled. Fappiano’s lifetime Average-Earnings Index (AEI) is an exceptional 4.52, measured against a Comparable Index of 3.02. In addition, the average earnings of his starters is an astronomical $105,000, placing him sixth among all sires with North American runners in 1997. His greatest influence today is through his son, Kentucky Derby-G1 winner Unbridled, also bred by Nerud, who is the sire of Unbridled’s Song and Quiet American. Several other influential sons include Cryptoclearance, Pentelicus, Cahill Road, Fappavalley, Rubiano, and Defensive Play also have demonstrated the ability to sire high quality runners.

Fappiano’s record as a broodmare sire is equally impressive. His daughters had produced eight percent stakes winners, among them the Grade 1 fillies Capote Belle and Storm Song. Fappiano’s AEI as a broodmare sire is an excellent 2.29, with a Comparable Index of 2.08.

To put his stud record in perspective, Fappiano’s sire statistics placed him tenth among all sires of North American runners with at least fifty lifetime foals of racing age through 1997. That’s good enough to position him between Pleasant Colony and Seattle Slew. On the broodmare sire side, he ranked fourteenth, between Hail to Reason and Round Table. Certainly this level of performance places him among the premier sires of his generation.

It’s called the genius of John Nerud.

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