Dynaformer – An Appreciation

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Barbaro, Perfect Drift, Riskaverse, Film Maker, Americain, Lucarno . . . the list of Dynaformer’s quality sons and daughters could go on and on, circling racetracks from California to Kentucky to Europe and beyond.

Three Chimneys Farm pensioned one of the world’s leading sires this week, halting a chain of production that fostered success in all of racing’s disciplines. Dynaformer’s progeny – and there are several more crops to come to the races – can run, run fast, run far.

They can jump, too.

Judging steeplechase sires in the United States can be compared to reading tea leaves, but Dynaformer’s success leaps from any measuring stick you choose. He’s produced 30 individual winners of more than 80 races and $3.4 million. His first winner came in 1997. He’s still waiting for his first 2012 win, but it will come – any day now.

Three-time champion McDynamo, who won a record five consecutive runnings of the Grand National at Far Hills, leads the way. Michael Moran’s powerhouse gelding – a Keeneland purchase and flat winner – earned more than $1 million in a career that started in 2001 and ended in 2007. In retirement, he’s an elite foxhunter with the Cheshire Foxhounds in Pennsylvania with trainer Sanna Hendriks aboard.

Beyond the big horse come a string of stakes horses led by multiple Grade I winner Tax Ruling. Bred by the Phipps family, he goes for a record third consecutive triumph in the Grade I Iroquois Steeplechase next month for Irv Naylor and trainer Brianne Slater. The Iroquois is 3 miles long. McDynamo won it. Tax Ruling has won it twice. Dynaformer was made for the Iroquois. Well, his sons and daughters were anyway.

Another son, Mabou, provided the most unlikely steeplechase stakes victory in Saratoga history last year – taking the Grade I New York Turf Writers Cup for flat trainer David Jacobson after being claimed for $30,000 earlier in the meet. With eyes on a summer return, Jacobson has his lone jumper in training at Aqueduct.

Left Unsaid raced on the flat for Bobby Frankel and joined the Tom Voss barn as a jumper in 2009. He won three times in his rookie season, taking down champion novice honors for The Fields Stable. Another Voss runner, Dynaski, owns three jump wins a Grade I placings. Hard-hitting mare Dynaskill, from the family of Hall of Fame steeplechaser Lonesome Glory, gave Dynaformer his 100th stakes winner back in 2009.

And on and on. Ken Ramsey claimed a few with steeplechasing in mind (and came up with Mabou). Dynantonia won a stakes. Dynamite Flier won races three years apart. Dynamite Vic won for Daniel Borislow. Dynability and Rare Bush starred for Jack Fisher’s stable, which won a $50,000 maiden hurdle with Dynaformer son Ambersham. Some others? Canardly, Cornhusker, Deadly Force, Dyn In Texas, Dynavolt, Dynaway, Good Request, Kuntash, More Fascination, Najjm, Reveillon, Saint Dynaformer, Seeking No More, Toby H, Wesley Chapel, Zozimus . . .

The list will no doubt grow – Sumo Power looks tough at Block House Saturday. Steeplechase trainers comb results charts and past performances for Dynaformer sons and daughters. They’re normally sound, sturdy, full of stamina – and they’ll learn to jump. Next time you’re at the races, look at the Dynaformers. You might see them over jumps soon.