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Mojo Purchases 3 Yearlings at Keeneland!

September 25, 2015 

Going into the 2015 Keeneland September Yearling Sale, Mojo Racing Partners had planned to purchase one horse; however, the Fort Worth-based partnership changed its strategy and bought three horses for the budget they initially set aside for one.

“Based on the way the economy had been rebounding over the past two years and the way the year-over-year sale results were increasing, I knew finding the type of horse we had purchased in 2013 and 2014 was probably going to be a challenge for us this year,” Fred Taylor, Mojo’s CEM, explains.  “And, this was confirmed when the horses we were particularly interested in were selling for two to four times what we were willing to pay.”

Mojo started shopping on Tuesday, September 22, and was shut out after the bidding on the horses they liked went for $60,000 - $120,000.  And, during the first half of Wednesday, September 23, sales on the yearlings Mojo identified were still strong.

New Purchase Strategy

“Before lunch on Wednesday, it became clear to me that we either weren’t going to get the type of horse that we wanted or I needed to change the purchase strategy to something new,” Fred acknowledged. 

“So, we grabbed a bite to eat and after lunch we shifted our focus specifically on the individual and not the catalog page,” Fred continued.  “Our main goals became finding horses that were physically solid, had a clean vet record, and, all else being equal, is an individual that JR (Mojo’s Trainer) could convert into consistent runners for the group.  And, what was on the catalog page was really a tertiary consideration at that point.” 

This change in plan paid off.  With the agreed shift in direction, Mojo began to pin-pointing horses that fit the new mold and the prices started falling into the affordable range. 

“Almost immediately, we were able to get a feel for what we had to work with and we began carving out a market within a market,” Fred said.  “In fact, my concern actually shifted from not being able to afford a horse to overpaying for a horse in this new class.”

Doubling Down

Mojo’s opportunity to strike happened when Hips #2940 and #2941 made their way from the back Show Ring into the Holding Area of the Sales Pavilion.

“JR told me that both horses were good to go, and if we don’t get the first one, then hang in there for the second,” Fred explained. 

As things turned out, Mojo was able to buy Hip #2940 (Dark Bay Colt by Broken Vow out of La Concerto) for $15,000 and also purchased Hip #2941 (Chestnut Colt by Haynesfield out of L.A. Dreamin) for $9,000.

“This isn’t the first time we’ve bundled two horses together for a Mojo group—in fact, we’ve had success doing this with three other Mojo groups recently,” Fred explains.  “As a general practice, it’s better if you can diversify your interests with the hope of increasing the odds in your favor for racing action and success via multiple horses.  And, since I only spent half of our designated purchase budget on Hip #2940, I doubled down and went for Hip #2941 and got him too.”

One Step Beyond

Mojo wasn’t done yet.  Confident that their new bloodstock selection model could find another runner for the price they were willing to pay, the partnership decided to try to use the remaining funds in their budget to buy a Filly.

“I knew we were in a position to create a totally unique experience for our Partnership—three horses,” Fred pointed out.  “We’ve never had three horses in a group, and the one thing we were missing (that I had hoped we would get this year) was a Filly.  And, since next year is Mojo’s 10th Anniversary, I made the decision to strike while the iron is hot and go back to find a Filly with the remaining amount.  The only question was could we do it without calling on the agreed reserve?”

Hip #3062 (Bay Filly by Macho Uno out of Shebelongstoyou) fit the bill and Mojo was able to buy her for $5,500.

“It was getting late in the day, and we were hopeful the Filly would go for the amount we had left over,” Fred explains.  “When the starting bid dropped and stalled at $3,000, I jumped in.  A few bids later, I ended up getting her for the right price.  And, after all was said and done, I still had a few hundred bucks left in our overall purchase budget—the perfect ending to a great day for our group!”

Next Steps

Mojo will follow the general development plan they’ve used for Yearlings the last two years: Early break, time off, and racetrack preparation during 1Q next year. 

“All three horses will be shipped to Texas,” Fred explains.  “From there, JR will decide when and where they will start their initial schooling—I call it Racehorse 101: They will be taught manners, how to take a saddle, rider, and learn basic directions (start, stop, turning, etc).  After some time off around Christmas to let their bodies rest and bones set, then they’ll begin Racehorse 201: Initial training for the racetrack (which includes starting to breeze, incremental workouts, and gate schooling).

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Join the Fun!

For more info about becoming part of a Mojo Racing Partners group, contact: Fred Taylor (214) 957-4090.

Mojo Background

Mojo Thoroughbred Holdings, LLC (which conducts its racing operations as Mojo Racing Partners) is based in Fort Worth, TX and was formed in 2006.  Since then, Mojo has raced at Arlington Park, Churchill Downs, Ellis Park, Indiana Downs, Keeneland, Kentucky Downs, Lone Star Park, Oaklawn Park, Remington Park, and Turfway Park.  Mojo’s on a mission to give people affordable and fun opportunities to participate in the exciting sport of Thoroughbred racing.