Five years ago, dominant thoroughbred Uncle Mo was, if only briefly, the Kentucky Derby favorite. But like so many Derby hopefuls before him, Uncle Mo didn't make it on to the track at Churchill Downs. He was scratched after signs of illness.
The horse ended up recovering and tomorrow his influence will finally be felt in Louisville when three horses that call him daddy will run in the Derby.
"I can't remember this strong of a first crop from any stallion," trainer Todd Pletcher told the LA Times. Pletcher trains Uncle Mo’s offspring Outwork, whose got 15-1 odds as of this writing. The other two horses that sprang forth from Uncle Mo in the Derby are Mo Tom and Nyquist, the undefeated favorite who’s currently at 3-1. Apparently having three horses in the Derby from your first crop of foals is quite an accomplishment for a horse.
Of course, Uncle Mo doesn't know that. He is, you'll recall, a horse. But his owner Mike Repole is well aware of what his horse is doing and he knows just how valuable it is. Repole says that his horse's super sperm makes the eight-year-old worth $100 million. Bloomberg breaks it down:
Repole estimates his horse is now worth a cool $100 million. Optimistic? Certainly, but not necessarily out of the question. Run the math. Repole figures Mo’s stud fee could rise from $75,000 today to as much as $150,000 in 2017, an increase that industry insiders say is feasible. Then factor in about 200 matings per season and combine that with the fact that at age eight, he could spend almost two more decades in the breeding shed. Even if he were to tail off markedly in coming years, the money still piles up quickly.
Uncle Mo has a long way to go to catch up with with Triple Crown winner American Pharoah, who commands a $200,000 stud fee. And even that lags behind Tapit, the 15-year-old while stallion who earns $300,000 for his owners every time he shoots a load. Like Uncle Mo, Tapit has three kids in this year’s Derby.
May the best sperm win.