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German feel in Mack Lobell

February 02, 2007

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Bossi Corner and Byzanz, both sired by the American-bred and German based stallion Bosphorus, will start in the $15,000 Mack Lobell Trot Preview at Pompano Park on Friday. What makes this meeting unique is the fact that Bosphorus has just three foals that are currently registered and racing in the United States.

Bred in Kentucky by Castleton Farm, Bosphorus competed with the top sophomore trotters of 1994, winning a heat of the World Trotting Derby, finishing second in the Yonkers Trot, and crossing the wire seventh in that year’s edition of the Hambletonian.

At the conclusion of his 3-year-old campaign, Bosphorus was purchased by harness racing’s winningest driver, Heinz Wewering, and was shipped to Germany where the son of Baltic Speed had a long career in the breeding shed.

Carsten Kleinfeldt, a former amateur driver from Germany who now imports European horses to the United States, has kept a close watch on the breeding career of Bosphorus.

“Bosphorus’ last breeding season was 2003 and his final crop of foals was registered in 2004,” Kleinfeldt said. “He covered many mares in Germany and produced many foals that raced across Europe. His offspring are mostly middle-class horses, but he has produced some champions.”

One of those champions was Oscar Schindler SL, who finished his career with earnings of 684,447 Euros ($891,370 US) and was the winner of the 2001 German Derby, the German equivalent of the Hambletonian,

Bossi Corner, who races in the Mack Lobell Preview, won an elimination heat for the 2002 German Derby but made a break in the final.

“I would say Bossi Corner is one of Bosphorus’ top offspring, along with Oscar Schindler SL,” Kleinfeldt opined. “He (Bossi Corner) finished second in the German Breeders’ Crown in 2003 and was third in the German Breeders’ Crown in 2002.

“After the 2002 season, Bossi Corner left Germany,” Kleinfeldt added, “and raced in Italy and France where the purse money was higher, coming back home for the big races, like Breeders’ Crown.”

Bossi Corner was imported to the U.S. in 2006 and has competed at the Meadowlands and Mohawk Raceway. The 8 year old won his qualifying heat at Pompano on Jan. 19, trotting the mile in 1:58.4. He leads the Mack Lobell Preview field in earnings with $396,893 banked for owner Marc Sillam of Paris, France.

Dein Spriggs, a three-time Amateur Driver of the Year, is the owner and driver for Byzanz, who came stateside in late 2004, making his North American debut at the Meadowlands on Feb. 4, 2005.

“I was over in Germany for the Amateur Driving Series and a friend of mine (Kleinfeldt) who I met in the Series introduced me to the breeders,” Spriggs said. “He helped set things up and helped bring Byzanz over.”

Spriggs also owns Horby Hunter, the third U.S. registered son of Bosphorus, who is a regular competitor at Pompano and has earnings over $134,000.

“I’ve done well with the Bosphorus line,” Spriggs stated, “and I look forward to racing against one on Friday.”

Bossi Corner, driven by Wilhelm Paal, has drawn post six for the Mack Lobell Preview, while Byzanz and Spriggs will begin just to his outside in post seven. (Pompano Park)
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