Just ask Alan McNeill
Alan was a young trainer just starting out on his own in 2003 after working for different trainers in the United States. He was a classmate of one of my sons and they played hockey together. His father Bill and I were acquainted through work.
Bill called me in the fall of 2003 to see if I could help Alan pick out a yearling in Lexington and give him a list of affordable yearlings to look at. Now Lexington is not what I would call an affordable place to buy a yearling but Alan had a partner, Andy Willinger, another young man who lived in Kentucky. They set off on their great adventure with $10,000 and a short list of bargain possibilities. The colt they bought after checking out the list for conformation, was by Cambest. He cost $12,000 and they had to borrow the extra $2,000 from Andy’s mother to get the colt home. It was on the list because it had a great pedigree but was by a sire that had lost favour in the marketplace.
Alan broke and trained the colt and raced him through the early part of his four year old year. In the process the colt won several stakes and earned almost $400,000 for his young owners. They sold him for another $400,000 and he went on to race for one of the top trainers in North America and won over $2,270,600 lifetime with a record of 1:47.3.