‘Special’ Penultimate Foal Out Of Leslie’s Lady Wins On Debut At Keeneland

Clarkland Farm’s homebred Marr Time added another impressive branch to her family tree when she sailed to a 2¾-length victory in her debut at Keeneland on Thursday. Ridden by Florent Geroux for Brad Cox, the 2-year-old daughter of Not This Time won the 6-furlong race in 1:11.96 as the 3-5 favorite.

“Just getting to this first start with all the expectations was a big goal for us,” said Tessa Bisha, a Kentucky assistant for Cox, who has been with the filly all year. “We were hopeful she would run like she did, but we haven’t made any plans after that race. She cooled out well and she looks great this morning (Friday). She’s always thought she was special.”

Marr Time is out of 2016 Broodmare of the Year Leslie’s Lady, one of the Thoroughbred industry’s all-time great producers. The best offspring of the daughter of Tricky Creek are multiple champion Beholder, Grade 1 winner and leading sire Into Mischief, and Grade 1 winner and sire Mendelssohn. Two of her offspring have topped Keeneland’s September Yearling Sale: Mendelssohn at $3 million in 2016 and America’s Joy at $8.2 million in 2019.

Celebrating Marr Time’s winning performance was the Clarkland team of Fred and Nancy Mitchell and their family.

“Every Kentucky breeder wants to win a race at Keeneland,” the Mitchells’ daughter Marty Buckner said. “It can be nerve-wracking but to find out how (good) the bloodlines are, you have to race them.”

Marr Time is the 14th foal out of Leslie’s Lady, whose final offspring is the yearling Kantharos filly Love You Irene. Now 25, Leslie’s Lady lives as a retiree at Clarkland, which 15 years ago bought her in foal to Orientate for $100,000 at the Keeneland November Breeding Stock Sale.

The family opted to breed Leslie’s Lady to Not This Time in part because he is a grandson of Storm Cat and her best offspring have been from that sire line.

“Marr Time was always easy,” Buckner said. “Leslie’s Lady’s best foals are always easy to raise and when you ask them to do something new, they rise to the occasion.”

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