The superstar colts boosting America's stallion ranks

2013 Belmont Stakes winner Palace Malice, a tough and versatile performer, takes high rank among the new stallions for 2016. Photo: Susie Raisher/

She has already looked at the world’s most exciting 12 new stallions  for 2016 in the upper price range. Now Nancy Sexton has dropped down to the next level to pick out some of the most interesting newcomers at more competitive prices.

Read her report on Europe’s stand-outs in this price bracket here.

A classic winner and Breeders’ Cup hero are among the new North American stallions available in the competitive price bracket of $10,000 to $20,000 for 2016.

Palace Malice (Three Chimneys Farm: $20,000) had Kentucky Derby winner Orb in arrears when capturing his career highlight, the 2013 Belmont Stakes. However, he was also a particularly versatile performer who later dropped back to a mile to take the Metropolitan Handicap. A tough horse who won six Graded stakes from a mile to a mile and a half, Palace Malice is the first son of Curlin to retire to stud in Kentucky.

Another tough 3yo, Bayern, is new to Hill ’n’ Dale Farm at $15,000. A powerful front-runner for Bob Baffert, Bayern captured the Haskell Invitational, Woody Stephens Stakes and Pennsylvania Derby by daylight before signing off his campaign with a hard fought victory over Toast Of New York and California Chrome in the Breeders’ Cup Classic. Added to that, he is a member of the powerful Courtly Dee family.

Last year’s wide-margin Wood Memorial Stakes winner Wicked Strong ($10,000) retires to Spendthrift Farm. The son of Hard Spun also won the Jim Dandy Stakes and lost out by only a nose in the Travers Stakes.

G1 2yo form is on offer in the form of Competitive Edge (Ashford Stud: $12,000) and Daredevil (WinStar Farm: $12,500). Competitive Edge, from the first crop of Super Saver, was a $750,000 2yo purchase who went on to justify that price tag by taking the Hopeful Stakes while Daredevil, who shares his sire More Than Ready with leading Australian stallion Sebring, took the Champagne Stakes.

Lea, who will stand alongside his sire First Samurai at Claiborne Farm for $12,500, offers a race record replete with class and versatility. He was one of those rare horses who successfully plied his trade on both dirt and turf; a G3 winner on turf at three, he took the Donn Handicap on dirt at five and was G1-placed on both surfaces this year at six.

Lea is one of a number of classy turf performers new to Kentucky next season. Karakontie (Gainesway Farm: $15,000) was a G1-winning 2yo in France who developed into a Classic hero at three when successful the Poule d’Essai des Poulains. The Bernstein colt also captured that year’s Breeders’ Cup Mile for the Niarchos family to emulate his third dam Miesque, who later forged an indelible mark on the stud book as the dam of Kingmambo.

Belmont Derby winner Mr Speaker (Lane’s End Farm: $10,000) also boasts regal connections as a Pulpit grandson of the legendary mare Personal Ensign. Not only that, he is bred on the same Pulpit - Unbridled cross as Tapit.

Summer Front (Airdrie Stud: $10,000) also promises to be popular given he is a high-class miler by War Front. Unbeaten in three starts at two, he later scored at G2 level and was G1-placed on no fewer than five occasions. Another tough performer, he retires as the winner of eight of 23 starts.

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