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In many respects, the exciting It’s A Dundeel, brilliant winner of last Saturday’s Group 1 Randwick Guineas, is the horse that his sire High Chaparral has to have.
After one of the most outstanding starts to his stud career from his New Zealand base at Windsor Park—four exceptional Group 1 winners from the 2006 southern hemisphere crop, headed by 10-time Group 1 winner So You Think—High Chaparral was lauded as the Messiah sire, but results since suggests he’s not the Messiah, although not a naughty boy either.
On the back of that wonderful first-crop success, he was whisked across the Tasman by owner Coolmore Stud to stand at its Hunter Valley stud in 2010, and promptly stamped with a service fee of $88,000 (inc. GST).
Australian breeders flocked to him as though he was about to give the Sermon on the Mount. High Chaparral covered 235 mares in 2010 and 187 in 2011, despite a fee increase to $99,000 (inc. GST). Last year Coolmore dropped his fee to $77,000 and he met 158 mares.
Since that first sensational crop, I believe High Chaparral hasn’t delivered on his promise, certainly not enough to warrant the service fee he has commanded since he relocated to Australia.
I first held reservations about High Chaparral a couple of years ago after an English friend said the stallion wasn’t on the shopping list of most breeders in Europe. (Although the success in England and Ireland in 2011 and 2012 of his New Zealand-born son So You Think has given him more attention.)
High Chaparral also has a terrible record siring quality race fillies—so far he has sired only four Stakes winning fillies in the southern hemisphere, and none of any great note. His first crop produced the Group 3 winners Fairy Oak (Auraria Stakes) and Lady Chaparral (Tauranga Stakes) and the Listed winner Chaparella (Gore Guineas). Only one Listed winning filly, High Kin (Taumarunui Gold Cup), came from his second crop, now aged five.
He didn’t have a Classic-contending filly last spring and he hasn’t got a filly that looks a chance of winning a decent race in the autumn.
Let’s look at the hot crop from 2006. Apart from So You Think, he also sired the enduring Shoot Out (Australian Derby and multiple G1 winner), Monaco Consul (Victoria Derby) and the recently retired Descarado (Caulfield Cup). Another son, Let Me Handle It, was a multiple Group 1 placegetter in Hong Kong.
The crop also produced Group 3 winners Western Symbol (Neville Sellwood Stakes), Fairy Oak and Lady Chaparral.
However, the 2007 crop is in complete contrast to 2006—no Group 1 winners, in fact, only one Group winner, the Kiwi stayer Hidden Asset (G2 ARC Championship) and only three Listed winners—Single (Sky High Stakes), The Underworld (Belmont Guineas) and High Kin. The Group placegetters Excluded and Chaparrone also come from crop two.
With his oldest progeny now six, High Chaparral can boast 13 black type winners in Australia and New Zealand.
High Chaparral didn’t shuttle in 2007 due to equine influenza, so he had no foals in 2008 (four-year-olds). His 2009 crop, also born in New Zealand and now three, has produced 18 individual winners. It’s A Dundeel is the only Stakes winner … and the only member of that crop to even place in a Stakes race, although the Mick Kent-trained High Shot, also in Sydney for the autumn riches, looks a quality animal.
Which is why I suggest that It’s A Dundeel is a horse that High Chaparral needed to have to hold his ground in the stallion ranks. The stallion has been hanging his headstall on that first crop for far too long. It’s time for others to step out.
Interestingly, I believe High Chaparral might do better with his Australian mares. He certainly has covered a better batch of mares in Australia and definitely mares with more speed. The speed factor might work for him, because I believe that his stock are probably better at a middle distance than they are beyond 2000 metres.
It’s worth noting that jockey James McDonald said It’s A Dundeel (who is out of a Zabeel mare) is probably best at 1600m to 2000m. So I suspect the stallion might provide more good 1600m horses from his Australian mares. Maybe a sprinter or two!
Also, his Australian mares have more muscle and bone, which will suit the athletically built, light-framed son of Sadler’s Wells. I have already seen that extra strength in some of his yearlings this year. In fact, I was involved in the purchase of one from the Melbourne Sale ($80,000, bought by Cranbourne trainer Enver Jusufovic)—lot 583, a colt from Pride Of Encosta (by Encosta De Lago), a medium-sized well-built colt with great bone, who looked more like an Encosta De Lago than he did a High Chaparral.
I’m banking on that being a good thing. Time will tell.
In 2011, Australians flocked to the New Zealand Bloodstock Karaka Yearling Sale, checked their heads in at the counter, replaced them with pumpkins, and lashed out big time on High Chaparral yearlings. They repeated the dose in 2012.
Here’s a list of the yearlings by High Chaparral bought by Australians—$200,000 or more—at Karaka in 2011 (now 3YOs) and their subsequent racetrack results:
High Shot b c ex-Queen Caelia, bought by Surf Coast Racing: $600,000—1 win from 3 starts.
Texas Ranger b c ex-Sierra Dane, Star Thoroughbreds: $240,000—unplaced 2 starts.
Hipoppus b c ex-Straight Eight, Gai Waterhouse: $350,000—2 wins from 6 starts.
Sweet As Bro br c ex-Successfilly, Spicer Th’breds: $200,000—unraced
Vaquera b f ex-The Mighty Lions, Gai Waterhouse: $280,000—maiden from 4 starts.
Kingdoms b c ex-A Real Princess, J B Cummings: $470,000—1 win from 4 starts.
Linus b c ex-Brilliant Princess, Hudson Conway P/L: $200,000—unraced.
Adam’s Day b c ex-Cadell, J B Cummings: $300,000—unraced.
Porcellanus b f ex-Casual Chick, Gai Waterhouse: $220,000—unraced.
Tabloid b c ex-Deceit, Mark Kavanagh: $375,000—unraced.
Progressor b c ex-Evolution, Danny O’Brien: $375,000—unplaced 2 starts.
Magical Mist b f Fairy Tipsy, John Chalmers B’stock: $200,000—unraced.
Plenty Special b c ex-Flowing, Chris Waller: $220,000—unraced.
Deduct b c ex-Havitbak, Connolly B’stock: $300,000—unraced.
Chapirlan b f ex-Irlanda, Gai Waterhouse: $340,000—unraced.
Palmerston North b c Karmal Gal, Paul Moroney B’stock: $310,000—unplaced 2 starts.
Stainer b c ex-Nuance, Connolly B’stock: $300,000—unplaced 3 starts.
As we pass into the second half of the 2012-13 season, these 17 high-priced three-year-olds, bought at an average of $NZ310,588, have won three provincial and one city midweek race between them.
As I said at the start … It’s A Dundeel is the horse that High Chaparral needs on his CV to keep any sort of hype going.
High Chaparral (b h 1999, Sadler’s Wells (USA)-Kasora (IRE), by Darshaan (IRE)).
It’s A Dundeel (b c 2009, High Chaparral (IRE)-Starzeel, by Zabeel (NZ))
Footnote: High Chaparral has 38 yearlings catalogued for next month’s Inglis Easter Yearling Sale. Importantly, some are out of outstanding mares far superior to what he covered in New Zealand, including Marooned Lady, Dashing Eagle, Circles Of Gold, Timbourina, True Doubt, Purple Groove, Red Hot Mama, Deedra, Miss O’Brien, Lady Of The Desert, Sylvaner, Brave And Bold, Geeta, Honi and Marina Lady.
Importantly for yearling buyers, we know that High Chaparral can produce a champion. The key is finding the right one.
Good work from the Mitchell boys, Arthur and Harry, of Yarraman Park, Scone, to announce their 2013 stallion fees early.
In doing so, the Mitchells have dodged the normal post-Easter Sale “shimmy” as studs wait for the usual pacesetter, Arrowfield Stud, to set its fees before an flood of announcements.
The good news for breeders is that Yarraman continues to offer tremendous value for money … and this is not a paid advertisement, just a clear observation.
The very reliable Magic Albert, despite his best yearling sale results—he averaged $136,000 at the Magic Millions Gold Coast Sale—has dropped slightly from $22,000 (inc. GST) to $19,250 (inc. GST). That’s a price that will continue to suit both commercial breeders looking for more than four times the service fee at yearling sale time to those who prefer to breed to race.
Magic Albert sired more than 100 winners last season, including five Stakes winners. Importantly, the progeny from his best mares (oldest yearlings) are yet to hit the racetracks. Magic Albert (ch h 1998, Zeditave-Sally Lou, by Salieri (USA)) remains a wonderful outcross stallion for breeders. Last year he covered 116 mares, down on the 162 and 154 he covered in his previous two years, but that was probably due to the strong support for his two young barn mates, Hinchinbrook and I Am Invincible.
Hinchinbrook (b h 2007, Fastnet Rock-Snippets’ Lass, by Snippets) remains unmoved at $16,500. He has covered books of 119 (2011) and 144 (2012) in his first two seasons. The three-parts brother to Snitzel will have his first yearlings sell in 2014.
I Am Invincible (b h 2004, Invincible Spirit (IRE)-Cannarelle, by Canny Lad) also remains unmoved on $11,000. The handsome sprinter has been hugely popular at that price, covering books of 133, 140 and 150 in his first three seasons. His first-crop yearlings have been very well received.
The former Chilean star Trotamondo (ch h 2001, Hussonet (USA)-Movie Producer (USA), by Give Me Strength (USA)) will be available on application.
“Our sires have been very popular with breeders, so we see no reason to be making any significant changes in fee, although we have brought Magic Albert back a touch on last year,” Harry Mitchell said.
If you think, like I do, that service fees remain too high for breeders, then don’t look in Yarraman’s direction for blame.
Photo: Hinchinbrook at Yarraman Park.
The human backstory of Blue Diamond Stakes winner Miracles Of Life is one of the best “feel good” racing stories we have witnessed for some time—battling trainer and the born-again 29-year-old female apprentice jockey contrasted to the inconspicuous billionaire Sri Lankan owner.
However, the pedigree backstory of the racy little filly is a celebration of everything Australian breeding has stood for in the past 60 years—speed and more speed.
It’s a pedigree stamped with the wonderful speed influences of Australian breeding, most of them unique to this part of the world. Names such as Redoute’s Choice, Danehill, Canny Lad, Bletchingly, Biscay, Star Kingdom, Rory’s Jester, Snippets, Lunchtime, Baguette, More Than Ready, Orgoglio, Wilkes and Vain.
The chunky filly, just touching 15 hands in high heels, is by Arrowfield Stud’s Not A Single Doubt (by Redoute’s Choice) from the More Than Ready mare, Dazzling Gazelle. Not A Single Doubt didn’t win a Group 1, but his flashy chestnut daughter supplied him with his first sire-success at the highest level.
Not A Single Doubt’s stallion stocks could take a dramatic rise if his other unbeaten filly, Villa Verde, can win the Group 1 Golden Slipper (1200m, Rosehill) in April.
Miracles Of Life is everything that her pedigree suggests she should be. Apart from the obvious precocious speed, physically she is built to run early. She’s an uncomplicated T-model Ford with a Mustang engine. What she lacks in height and scope she makes up for in muscle on bone, and more muscle on bone … and temperament. She’s Sally Pearson with a saddle.
Miracles Of Life reminds me a lot of her paternal grand-dam, Singles Bar. She’s a dead ringer for her—dull chestnuts with a large splashy white blaze and flaxen mane and tail.
I remember Singles Bar, owned by Michael Sissian and his partners at Segenhoe Stud, when Lee Freedman trained her at Flemington. The half-sister to Snippets (both out of champion broodmare Easy Date) got her colouring from her sire, Golden Slipper winner Rory’s Jester.
Singles Bar had speed to burn. She won her first start as a 2YO at Bendigo in December 1993, but wasn’t considered strong enough to be trained for the better autumn juvenile races. She also won at Sandown in April 1993 before being Stakes-placed at Morphettville. Injury stopped her from having a 3YO career and she as retired to Segenhoe Stud and was mated in 1994 to Naturalism. The mating produced a replica chestnut daughter, Natural Is My Name, who also was Stakes-placed. At stud she has producing Golden Slipper runner-up and now handy stallion, Zizou (by Fusaichi Pegasus USA)).
A lot will be made of Miracle Of Life’s double cross of 3×4 Easy Date (dam of Snippets, who is the sire of her second dam, Snippet’s Jewel), and rightfully so. The configuration certainly makes her pedigree an interesting one and one that will be highlighted by breeding buffs who expound the dual appearance of a top broodmare in a pedigree. The recent success of Zizou as a sire is the result of doubling Easy Date in the matings orchestrated by Stuart Ramsay and his team at Turangga Stud in Scone—Zin Zan Eddie, Everage and Marsielles Roulette are progeny of Zizou with a double cross of Easy Date in the pedigree. To read more about Easy Date’s influence read Peter Jenkins’ excellent summary on the Arrowfield Stud website.
However, as I have pointed out, Miracles Of Life’s pedigree is much more than that and, in my opinion, far greater influenced by the champion Australian speed stallions in her pedigree.
Not A Single Doubt is coming out of the shadow of his famous sire. He was an exceptionally quick juvenile in a crack year—he won the won the Listed Canonbury Stakes (1000m) in December 2003 and was $2.40 favourite when a solid second behind champion Dance Hero in the Magic Millions. Not A Single Doubt started odds-on in the Group 2 Todman Stakes (1200m, Rosehill) but finished fourth and missed the Golden Slipper, won by Dance Hero from Charge Forward, Alinghi and Fastnet Rock.
At three, after Tony Vasil had taken over the training from Graeme Rogerson, Not A Single Doubt won the 2005 Listed Zeditave Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield. He retired after finishing ninth behind Alinghi in the Group 1 Newmarket Handicap (1200m, Flemington).
Of course, Not A Single Doubt is a son of Redoute’s Choice, a Blue Diamond Stakes winner and sire of Blue Diamond and Golden Slipper winners. Redoute’s Choice is a son of the great Danehill, who sired five Golden Slipper winners.
Dazzling Gazelle is by More Than Ready, the most successful American import of modern times. More Than Ready has sired two Golden Slipper winners and continues to be a wonderful speed influence in Australia and in America.
The other great influences for precocious speed include Snippets (Magic Millions winner), Rory’s Jester (Golden Slipper) and his sire Crown Jester, the sire of two Golden Slipper winners, Crown Jester’s sire Baguette (Golden Slipper) and, finally, the incomparable Vain, who is arguably the best Golden Slipper winner and sire of two Slipper winners.
Vain “kicks off” the speed factor in the female line of Miracles Of Life. He is the sire of the classy producing mare Exclusive Heiress, who is the dam of the brilliant juvenile Exclusive Halo (winner of the 1994 Maribyrnong Plate and Maribyrnong Trial Stakes) and his equally smart half-sister Miss Jugah (1995 Maribyrnong Trial Stakes and 1999 Mannerism Stakes).
This is a family that began its “life” in South Australia at the famed Milluna Stud with the importation of the English mare Examount, a daughter of Exbury and Riches, by Rockefella. Examount produced seven foals, but only her daughter by Vain was of any consequence.
So in many ways Miracles Of Life, on her pedigree, is anything but a miracle of nature. She’s exactly what she was bred to be. She is in contrast to the 2011 Melbourne Cup winner Dunaden, who had a pedigree as thin as a cigarette paper and a story not out of place in a Brothers Grimm fantasy.
Footnote: Redoute’s Choice, who won the Blue Diamond Stakes in 1999, became the first winner to sire a Diamond winner when Undoubtedly won in 2005. Another son, Nadeem, won in 2006. Now the great Arrowfield stallion is the first Blue Diamond winner to be a paternal grandsire of a Diamond winner.
Photo: Miracles Of Life, ridden by Lauren Stojakovic, winning the 2013 Group 1 Blue Diamond Stakes at Caulfield. (photo slickpix)
I’d be silly not to take notice of Paul Messara’s tweet on Wednesday, which read simply: “Unearthed a good filly at Kembla today. Perfect Tempo”.
As tweets go, it was well under the maximum 140 characters, but at least some of (@paulmessara) Messara’s 2800 or so Twitter followers, like me, should have jotted down the name of the filly, Perfect Tempo, for future reference.
I went a step further and studied the replay of the filly’s debut performance in the 1400m 3YO Fillies Maiden at Kembla Grange— a metropolitan class meeting.
Messara musings about his filly are spot on. He might have a Group 1 Australian Oaks (2400m, Randwick) contender if the filly can sustain her form in her first racing preparation. No easy feat, but there is always the option of backing off for the Queensland Oaks in the winter.
Perfect Tempo (b f 2009, Redoute’s Choice-Special Harmony, by Spinning World), pictured as a yearling, was snagged back to near last by James Collett in the field of 14 fillies. She wasn’t closer to the fence than three wide and made a long, very wide sweeping run from before the home turn. Perfect Tempo loomed up to win at the 200 metres, poked her nose in front just before the line, only to be grabbed in the last bound by the fast-finishing Unimpeachable (by Bradbury’s Luck), who had been buried away midfield and got clear late.
I think both fillies are very smart. I loved the turn of foot of Joe Pride’s Unimpeachable, who had finished second at Wyong at her only other start, and I couldn’t but be impressed by the performance of Perfect Tempo to circle the field from last and still hit the line strongly.
Perfect Tempo is the fourth foal of former champion filly Special Harmony (ch m 2000, Spinning World-Marooned Lady, by Marooned), who three Group 1s—the 2003 Thousand Guineas (1600m, Caulfield) and VRC Oaks (2500m, Flemington) and the 2004 Arrowfield Stud Stakes (2000m, Rosehill)—and five other Group races for trainer Lee Freedman.
John Messara’s Arrowfield Stud prepared Perfect Tempo for the 2011 Inglis Easter Yearling Sale for her breeders, Harmonious Foundary Pty Ltd, who raced Special Harmony. The filly sold to the bid of Frenchman Gerard Larrieu (Chantilly Bloodstock) for $850,000. Larrieu was acting for a Chinese client, Mr D. M. K. Yu, and the Arrowfield Pastoral Syndicate took a managing share.
Special Harmony’s first foal, a filly by Encosta De Lago, cost Bob Ingham $1.5 million at Easter in 2009 and, racing as Little Surfer Girl, has won three times at Listed level for trainer Chris Waller.
The second foal was a colt, by Redoute’s Choice (named Slater), sold for $140,000 (Badger’s Bloodstock) at Easter in 2009. He won at Canterbury on debut over 1100m for Waller in May 2010 and again at Rosehill in September as a 3YO, but struggled at a higher level before he was sold to race in Perth, where he didn’t win. Slater is at stud in the west.
Special Harmony’s third foal, a sister to Little Surfer Girl, was retained by her breeders, but didn’t race. She has a 2012 colt by Exceed And Excel and is in foal to Smart Missile.
Special Harmony’s current two-year-old, Special Dynasty (a colt by Encosta De Lago), also has been retained and is in training at Flemington with Anthony Freedman.
Since then Special Harmony has produced a sister to Perfect Tempo. She wasn’t served in 2011, but Fastnet Rock covered her last spring.
Special Harmony was a very versatile filly. She was capable at a high level from 1200 metres to 2500 metres, although she probably wasn’t a genuine stayer. The stoutness comes through Special Harmony’s dam sire, Marooned—a son of the great Mill Reef—who won the 1986 Sydney Cup (3200m) for trainer Brian Mayfield-Smith.
Marooned died, aged 25, after a wonderful career as a stallion in the west, where he sired 18 Stakes winners, including some fast sprinter-milers such as Group 1 Railway Stakes (1600m) winners Hardrada and Island Morn. His daughters have proved to be outstanding broodmares and Marooned Lady, who also is the dam of 2004 Group 2 Perth Cup (3200m) winner King Canute and 2004 Group 2 Karrakatta Plate (2YOs, 1200m) winner Redwoldt—emphasising her ability to produce stamina and speed—is the best.
It’s always encouraging when great racemares produced quality offspring. It can only do the breed the world of good. Disappointingly, in recent years we have seen some of Australia’s best and well-bred mares sold or transferred to the northern hemisphere by international breeders such as Japan’s Katsumi Yoshida and Sheikh Mohammed’s Darley.
In a near future blog, I might do a list of these quality mares who have left our breeding paddocks.
View Perfect Tempo’s catalogue page CLICK HERE
Unimpeachable also has an outstanding pedigree. She is by Redoute’s Choice’s grey son Bradbury’s Luck (out of the champion mare Skating) from Dubious Affair, a daughter of Zabeel and the royally bred imported mare Curious Affair (USA).
Curious Affair’s dam L’Extravagante (by Le Fabuleux (FR)) is a daughter of the champion racemare and broodmare Franfreluche, who is the third dam of Flying Spur and the fourth dam of Encosta De Lago.
Unimpeachable sold at the 2011 Inglis Classic Yearling Sale to Joe Pride for $30,000. View her pedigree page CLICK HERE.
New Zealand-based stallions with first-crop yearlings in 2013.
Profiles by Danny Power. Reprinted from the January issue of Inside Racing magazine.
BATTLE PAINT (USA)
B h 2004, Tale Of The Cat (USA)-Black Speck (USA), by Arch (USA)
Chequers Stud, Cambridge, NZ.
2010 fee: $5000—49 foals.
Weanling sale average: $3066 (three sold).
Career: 11 starts, 3 wins (1200m-1400m), 3 placings—Stakes placed.
Best win: Beyond The Barriers Stakes (1200m, Doncaster).
Comment: American-bred but did his racing in France and England. Very good juvenile with best-performance second behind Holy Roman Emperor in the G1 Grand Criterium (1400m, Longchamp). Dam is a half-sister to champion sire Dynaformer, sire of Americain.
BUFFALO MAN (CAN)
B h 2004, El Prado (IRE)-Perfect Six (USA), by Saratoga Six (USA)
Totara Park Stud, Whangarei, NZ.
2010 fee: $6500—47 foals.
Weanling sale average: $4300 (three sold).
Career: 23 starts, 8 wins (1000m-1700m), 6 placings—5 Stakes wins.
Best win: G3 Appleton Handicap (1600m, Gulfstream).
Comment: Fast American sprinter-miler. Stakes winner at two. Ran 1200m in 1.08 and 1600m in 1.33. By Sadler’s Wells’ fast and best USA-based son, El Prado, the sire of top stallions Medaglia d’Oro and Kitten’s Joy.
Gr h 2006, Danehill Dancer (IRE)-Starlight Dreams (USA), by Black Tie Affair (USA)
Windsor Park Stud, Cambridge, NZ.
2010 fee: $25,000—123 foals.
Weanling sale average: $53,800 (10 sold).
Career: 12 starts, 7 wins (1200m-2200m), 2 placings—6 Stakes wins, 5 G1s.
Best win: G1 Irish 2000 Guineas (1600m, Curragh).
Comment: The best son of his sire Danehill Dancer. Dominant dual-G1 winner at two, trained on to win the G1 Irish 2000 Guineas and G1 St. James’s Palace Stakes (1600m) at Royal Ascot. Classy and versatile. Coolmore-owned. Sprinter-miler pedigree.
NOM DU JEU (NZ)
Br h 2004, Montjeu (IRE)-Prized Gem (NZ), by Prized (USA)
Fairdale Stud, Longburn, NZ.
2010 fee: $6000—83 foals.
Weanling sale average: $5338 (eight sold).
Career: 23 starts, 4 wins (1200,-2400m), 9 placings—2 Stakes wins.
Best win: G1 AJC Australian Derby (2400m, Randwick).
Comment: Good-looking son of the great Montjeu (Sadler’s Wells), who is proving a good sire of sires. His dam, Prized Gem, won the G1s from 2000m to 3200m. Possessed a turn-of-foot. Well supported by breeders.
RED GIANT (USA)
Ch h 2004, Giant’s Causeway (USA)-Beyond The Sun (USA), by Kingmambo (USA).
Westbury Stud, Karaka, NZ.
2010 fee: $10,000—77 foals.
Weanling sale average: $10,400 (seven sold).
Career: 12 starts, 6 wins (1600m-2000m), 4 placings—4 Stakes wins.
Best win: G1 Clement L Hirsch Memorial Turf Championship (2000m, Santa Anita).
Comment: Top-class son of Giant’s Causeway, who is proving an excellent sire of sires. His son Shamardal has had a big impact. Red Giant is from the famous family of Bosra Sham, Hector Protector and Ciro.
RAISE THE FLAG (GB)
B h 2005, Sadler’s Wells (USA)-Hasili (IRE), by Kahyasi (IRE).
White Robe Lodge, Otago, NZ.
2010 fee: $4000—75 foals.
Weanling sale average: $4000 (two sold).
Career: 1 start, unplaced.
Comment: By a champion stallion from a champion broodmare. Hasili is the dam of five G1 winners, including champion sire Dansili. He has a similar profile to White Robe’s two most famous stallions, Noble Bijou and Mellay.
ROC DE CAMBES (NZ)
B h 2004, Red Ransom (USA)-Fairy Lights (IRE), by Fairy King (USA)
The Oaks Stud, Cambridge, NZ.
2010 fee: $7000—40 foals.
Weanling sale average: None sold.
Career: 8 starts, 4 wins (1800m-2200m), 2 placings—2 Stakes wins.
Best win: G2 Nippon Sho St. Lite Kinen (2200m, Nakayama).
Comment: New Zealand-bred colt who raced in Japan where he was the top-rated 3YO colt of his year after winning four of his six starts. Also won the G3 Radio Nikkei Sho (1800m, Fukushima). From the family of stallions Germano and Pilsudski.
ROAD TO ROCK
B h 2004 Encosta De Lago-Trewornan (GB), by Midyan (USA)
Wellfield Lodge, Palmerston North, NZ.
2010 fee: $10,000—66 foals.
Weanling sale average: $10,128 (16 sold).
Career: 36 starts, 6 wins (1500m-2000m), 10 placings—4 Stakes wins.
Best win: G1 George Main Stakes (1600m, Randwick).
Comment: Won the Listed Carbine Club Stakes (1600m) at three, but really hit his straps at five, winning the G1 George Main Stakes and the G1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2000m, Randwick). Very unlucky second in the G1 Doncaster Handicap (1600m, Randwick). Durable son of champion stallion.
B h 2005, Zabeel (NZ)-Fleur De Chine (NZ), by Centaine
Highview Stud, Hamilton, NZ.
2010 fee: $4000—35 foals
Weanling sale average: $4500 (one sold).
Career: 7 starts, 2 wins (1600m), 2 placings—1 Stakes win.
Best win: Listed Champagne Stakes (1600m, Ellerslie).
Comment: Son of the great Zabeel, who was precocious enough to win a Stakes race at two. Injury finished his race career as a summer 3YO after beating open company in a fast 1min 34.11 over 1600m at Ellerslie, which earned him favouritsm for the NZ Derby.
B h 2004, Secret Savings (USA)-Rapid Serve (USA), by Carson City (USA)
Westbury Stud, Karaka, NZ.
2010 fee: $10,000—80 foals.
Weanling sale average: $27,500 (two sold).
Career: 20 starts, 12 wins (1000m-1300m), 3 placings—5 Stakes wins
Best win: G1 Oakleigh Plate (1100m, Caulfield).
Comment: Brilliant Queensland sprinter, who beat all but Scenic Blast in the G1 Newmarket Handicap (1200m, Flemington). Handsome, athletic horse with great speed and fight. All-American bred and from the family of top sires Rahy, Noverre and Dance In The Dark.
B h 2005, Montjeu (IRE)-Upstage (GB), by Quest For Fame (GB)
Cambridge Stud, Cambridge, NZ.
2010 fee: $12,500—86 foals.
Weanling sale average: $14,079 (12 sold).
Career: 15 starts, 5 wins (1100m-1400m), 4 placings—2 Stakes wins.
Best win: G1 Mudgway Stakes (1400m, Hastings).
Comment: Sprinter-miler by the champion staying sire Montjeu. Also won the G1 Waikato Sprint (1400m, Te Rapa). Precocious enough to win over 1100m at two and finish 2nd in the Listed Vain Stakes (1100m) at Caulfield at three. From the family of G1 Japan Cup (2400m) winner Jupiter Island.
B h 2005, Kingmambo (USA)-Maryinsky (IRE), by Sadler’s Wells (USA).
Windsor Park Stud, Cambridge, NZ.
2010 fee: $10,000—77 foals
Weanling sale average: $21,100 (eight sold).
Career: 9 starts, 4 wins (1500m-1600m)—3 Stakes wins.
Best win: G1 Criterium International (1600m, Saint-Cloud).
Comment: His four wins were at two in France. Crack miler. From a G1-placed daughter of champion sire Sadler’s Wells, who produced champion filly Peeping Fawn (4 G1s). Granddam Blush With Pride won the G1 Kentucky Oaks. From the famous Best In Show (his third dam) family of Redoute’s Choice and many other top sires.
Stud fees in $NZ (not including GST)
$1NZ is $0.785AUD; $1AUD is $1.273NZ
Photo: Windsor Park’s new stallion, Mastercraftsman.
Australian-based stallions with first-crop yearlings in 2013.
Profiles by Danny Power, reprinted from the January issue of Inside Racing magazine.
B h 2005, Red Ransom (USA)-Milva (USA), by Strawberry Road
Arrowfield Stud, Scone, NSW.
2010 fee: $16,500—97 foals.
Weanling sale average: $16,950 (10 sold).
Career: 24 starts, 4 wins (1000m-1600m), 5 placings—3 Stakes wins.
Best win: G1 Emirates Stakes (1600m, Flemington).
Comment: Three of his wins were at two, including the G2 Skyline Stakes (1200m, Randwick). Trained on to win at G1 level at four. Tall, powerful son of prominent sire-of-sires, Red Ransom.
BIG BROWN (USA)
B h 2005, Boundary (USA)-Mien (USA), by Nureyev (USA)
Vinery Stud, Scone, NSW.
2010 fee: $44,000 (92 foals).
Weanling sale average: $50,500 (six sold).
Career: 8 starts, 7 wins (1600m-2000m)—5 Stakes wins, 4 G1s.
Best win: G1 Kentucky Derby (2000m, Churchill Downs).
Comment: Champion colt of his year in America where he won the first two legs of the Triple Crown (Derby and Preakness, 1900m). Also won the G1 Haskel Invitation (1800m) and G1 Florida Derby (1800m). Won only 2YO start by 11 lengths. Won on turf and dirt. American first-crop foals showing great promise. Quality individual from the Danzig line.
Br h 2006, Lonhro-Peach, by Vain
Darley, Kelvinside, Aberdeen, NSW.
2010 fee: $38,500—77 foals.
Weanling sale average: $26,900 (five sold).
Career: 12 starts, 9 wins (1100m-1400m), 1 placing—5 Stakes wins.
Best win: G1 Golden Rose (1400m, Rosehill).
Comment: Retired as Lonhro’s best and fastest son. Magnificent near black horse, who possessed a slick turn-of-foot. He offers a unique close-up source of the blood of Vain through his dam Peach, who closely related to champion Taj Rossi and Golden Slipper winner Dark Eclipse.
B h 2005, Choisir-Faith In Dreams (USA), by Ferdinand (USA)
Widden Stud, Widden Valley, NSW.
2010 fee: $9900—60 foals.
Weanling sale average: $5200 (five sold).
Career: 11 starts, 4 wins (1200m-1400m), 2 placings—3 Stakes wins.
Best win: G2 Stan Fox Stakes (1400m, Randwick).
Comment: Also won the G3 Up And Coming Stakes (1200m, W. Farm) and G3 Liverpool City Cup (1300m, W. Farm). Comes from one of the world’s great stallion-producing families. His third dam Thong is the dam of top sire Thatch and the mare Special, who is dam of Nureyev and granddam of Sadler’s Wells.
Br h 2006, Red Ransom (USA)-Staging, by Success Express (USA)
Kitchwin Hills, Gundy, NSW.
2010 fee: $22,000—89 foals.
Weanling sale average: $51,883 (six sold).
Career: 18 starts, 3 wins (1100m-1400m), 1 placing—3 Stakes wins.
Best win: G1 BTC Cup (1200m, Doomben).
Comment: Deserves his G1 success as a late 3YO after competing consistently at the highest level. Dam a four-time G2 winner. Half-brother to stallions Tickets and Excites. Strong, balanced individual who stamps his foals.
Ch h 2005, Street Cry (IRE)-Cool Slew (USA), by Seattle Slew (USA)
Brackley Park Stud, Avenel, Vic.
2010 fee: $8800—24 foals.
Weanling sale average: $13,000 (one sold).
Career: 6 starts, 3 wins (1200m-1800m), 3 placings—1 Stakes win.
Best win: G3 Grey Stakes (1700m, Woodbine).
Comment: Also second in the G1 Charles Whittingham Memorial Handicap (2000m, turf, Hollywood Park). A son of the international star Street Cry from a strong and fast US black-type family.
I AM INVINCIBLE
B h 2004, Invincible Spirit (IRE)-Cannarelle, by Canny Lad
Yarraman Park Stud, Scone, NSW.
2010 fee: $11,000—95 foals.
Weanling sale average: $9750 (four sold).
Career: 13 starts, 5 wins (1000m-1100m), 2 placings—2 Stakes wins.
Best win: G3 DC McKay Stakes (1100m, Morphettville).
Comment: Led Takeover Target when second to him in the 2009 G1 The Goodwood (1200m, Morphettville). Tall, athletic sprinter with great speed. The fastest son of his impressive Danzig-line sire.
Ch h 2005, Flying Spur-Categorical, by Hennessy (USA)
Kooringal Stud, Wagga Wagga, NSW.
2010 fee: $8800—33 foals.
Weanling sale average: None sold.
Career: 3 starts, 1 win (1200m), 2 placings—1 Stakes win.
Best win: G2 Todman Stakes (1200m, Rosehill).
Comment: Fast and precocious son of Flying Spur. Won the important G2 Todman Stakes at two, but a stone bruise forced him to miss the G1 Golden Slipper. He didn’t race again. Interestingly, inbred to Flying Spur’s family. Half-brother to the fast Anevay.
B h 2006, Encosta De Lago-Shantha’s Choice, by Canny Lad
Arrowfield Stud, Scone, NSW.
2010 fee: $49,500—82 foals.
Weanling sale average: $79,375 (four sold).
Career: 11 starts, 2 wins (1200m-1400m), 7 placings—2 Stakes wins.
Best win: G1 AJC Sires’ Produce Stakes (1400m, Randwick).
Comment: Half-brother to champion sire Redoute’s Choice. Very honest top-line colt who was third in the 2009 G1 Golden Slipper (1200m), won the G1 Sires and finished third in the G1 Champagne Stakes (1600m). Trained on to finish third in the G1 Caulfield Guineas (1600m) and second behind So You Think in the G1 Cox Plate (2040m).
MEDAGLIA D’ORO (USA)
B h El Prado (IRE)-Cappucino Bay (USA), by Bailjumper (USA)
Darley, Kelvinside, Aberdeen, NSW.
2010 fee: $88,000—66 foals.
Weanling sale average: $6000 (one sold)
Career: 17 starts, 8 wins (1800-2000m), 7 placings—3xG1s, 4xG2.
Best win: G1 Travers Stakes (2000m, Saratoga).
Comment: Champion US racehorse who is already the sire of eight G1 winners (six fillies), including champion filly Rachel Alexandra. First at stud in 2005. By America’s best son of Sadler’s Wells. His stock act on turf and dirt.
B h 2005, Bianconi (USA)-Nicola Lass, by Scenic (IRE)
Widden Stud, Widden Valley, NSW.
2010 fee: $22,000—116 foals.
Weanling sale average: $28,278 (nine sold).
Career: 17 starts, 6 wins (1000m-1400m), 4 placings—4 Stakes wins.
Best win: G1 Lightning Stakes (1000m, Flemington).
Comment: Half-brother to top-class Niconero. Brilliant sprinter with terrific turn-of-foot. Also won the G1 The Galaxy (1100m, Randwick). Good-looking horse by a Danzig line stallion from the family of good sire Military Plume.
B h 2006, Red Ransom (USA)-Palia, by Last Tycoon (IRE)
Vinery Stud, Scone, NSW.
2010 fee: $24,200—121 foals.
Weanling sale average: $65,625 (eight sold)
Career: 12 starts, 2 wins (1400m-1600m), 4 placings—2 Stakes wins.
Best win: G1 Champagne Stakes (1600m, Randwick).
Comment: Beat Tickets and Manhattan Rain to win the G1 Champagne Stakes at two. Didn’t win at three but finished third behind Road To Rock in the G1 George Main Stakes (1600m, Randwick). Outstanding individual who gets his quality from dam-sire Last Tycoon.
Ch h 2003, Royal Academy (USA)-Gatana, by Marauding (NZ)
Patinack Farm, Scone, NSW.
2010 fee: $8800—60 foals.
Weanling sale average: $11,667 (three sold).
Career: 21 starts, 4 wins (1100m-1400m), 6 placings—2 Stakes wins.
Best win: G3 Cameron Handicap (1400m, Newcastle).
Comment: Overcame injury to return to racing and compete at the highest level. Handsome and fast son of Royal Academy from the granddam of champion sire Fastnet Rock.
B h 2003, Red Ransom (USA)-Lady Jakeo, by Last Tycoon (IRE)
Blue Gum Farm, Euroa, Vic.
2010 fee: $6600—51 foals.
Weanling sale average: $7795 (10 sold).
Career: 17 starts, 4 wins (1100m-1300m), 4 placings—1 Stakes win.
Best win: G3 Los Angeles Handicap (1200m, Hollywood Park).
Comment: Won three times in the USA after being placed in the G3 Bletchingly Stakes (1200m, Caulfield) and Listed Monash Stakes (1100m, Caulfield), including at G3 level. Another product of the Red Ransom-Last Tycoon cross. Stood his first season in NSW.
b h 2004, Red Ransom (USA)-Tracy’s Element, by Last Tycoon (IRE)
Glenlogan Park, Beaudesert, Qld.
2010 fee: $8800—96 foals.
Weanling sale average: $7167 (three sold).
Career: 17 starts, 5 wins (1100m-1200m), 2 placings—2 Stakes wins.
Best win: Listed Creswick Stakes (1200m, Flemington).
Comment: Brother to Australian Horse of the Year Typhoon Tracy. Handsome stallion who was placed at G2 level. Comes from the same Red Ransom-Last Tycoon cross as G1 winner Onemorenomore.
B h 2005, Redoute’s Choice-Procrastinate, by Jade Hunter (USA)
Darley, Kelvinside, Aberdeen, NSW.
2010 fee: $13,750—68 foals.
Weanling sale average: $12,000 (two sold).
Career: 7 starts, 2 wins (1000m-1200m), 4 placings—1 Stakes win.
Best win: Listed Zeditave Stakes (1200m, Caulfield).
Comment: Three-quarter brother to smart sire Foreplay. Beat all but Whobegotyou in the 2008 G1 Caulfield Guineas (1600m, Caulfield). By a champion sire from a great broodmare.
Ch h 2004, Johannesburg (USA)-Spirit Of Grace, by Dr Grace (NZ)
Blue Gum Farm, Euroa, Vic.
2010 fee: $13,750—55 foals.
Weanling sale average: $10,543 (seven sold).
Career: 31 starts, 5 wins (1200m-1600m), 12 placings—4 Stakes wins.
Best win: G1 William Reid Stakes (1200m, Moonee Valley).
Comment: G1 Queensland Guineas winner at three. Trained on to have an outstanding 2009-10 season when he won the G1 Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes (1400m, Caulfield) and the William Reid. Compact, attractive horse with a sharp turn-of-foot. Storm Cat line.
U.S. RANGER (USA)
B h 2004, Danzig (USA)-My Annette (USA), by Red Ransom (USA)
Independent Stallions, Victoria.
2010 fee: $11000—34 foals.
Weanling sale average: None sold.
Career: 19 starts, 5 wins (1200m-1600m), 5 placings—2 Stakes wins.
Best win: Listed Testimonial Stakes (1200m, Curragh).
Comment: Also won the Listed Prix Djebel (1400m, Maisons-laffitte). Unbeaten in three starts at two in France. Second in the G1 July Cup (1200m, Newmarket) and third in the G1 Prix Floret (1400m, Longchamp). Fast son of Danzig. Stood one season in Australia.
VON COSTA DE HERO
b h 2005, Encosta De Lago-Piavonic, by Scenic (IRE)
Darley, Northwood Park, Seymour, Vic.
2010 fee: $16,500—79 foals.
Weanling sale average: $9731 (eight sold).
Career: 19 starts, 1 win (1400m), 5 placings—1 Stakes win.
Best win: G2 VRC Sires’ Produce Stakes (1400m, Flemington).
Comment: $1.2m yearling. While he won only one race, he finished second behind Sebring in the 2008 G1 Golden Slipper (1200m), third in the 2008 G1 Caulfield Guineas (1600m) and second in the 2009 G1 Australian Guineas (1600m). Magnificent individual and inbred to the brothers Fairy King and Sadler’s Wells.
B h 2006, Fastnet Rock-Fragmentation, by Snippets
Eliza Park Stud, Kerrie, Vic.
2010 fee: $38,500—58 foals.
Weanling sale average: $130,100 (five sold).
Career: 15 starts, 3 wins (1100m-1200m), 6 placings—2 Stakes wins.
Best win: G1 Newmarket Handicap (1200m, Flemington).
Comment: Powerfully built son of exciting sire Fastnet Rock. Top-class 2YO winner of G3 Kindergarten Stakes (1100m, Randwick). Very consistent in open G1 level at three before his Newmarket win.
WICKED STYLE (USA)
Ch h 2005, Macho Uno (USA)-Deviletta (USA), by Trempolino (USA)
Oaklands Stud, Toowoomba, Qld.
2010 fee: $8800—45 foals.
Weanling sale average: None sold.
Career: 17 starts, 5 wins (1300m-1800m), 4 placings—2 Stakes win.
Best win: G1 Kentucky Breeders’ Futurity (1700m, Churchill Downs).
Comment: His Group wins were as a 2YO. Also won the G3 Washington Futurity (1600m, Arlington). By a champion 2YO, who won the G1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (1600m) from a mare by a G1 Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe (2400m) winner.
Ch g 2005, Exceed And Excel-Scandinavia, by Snippets
Lindsay Park Stud, Angaston, SA.
2010 fee: $8800—18 foals.
Weanling sale average: None sold.
Career: 14 starts, 4 wins (1000m-1100m), 1 placing—3 Stakes wins.
Best win: G2 Schillaci Stakes (1000m, Caulfield).
Comment: Wilander had fertility issues resulting in only one crop before he was gelded and returned to racing. He was a brilliant 2YO, who won a G3 Blue Diamond Prelude (1100m) before winning the G2 Schillaci at three. Half-brother to the dam of Black Caviar and All Too Hard.
(Stud fees include GST)
Photo: Von Costa De Hero (Darley) at Caulfield.
It will be interesting to see if an Australian stud or, more likely, a New Zealand farm takes the gamble on standing the recently retired Unusual Suspect.
The American-bred stallion has an intriguing pedigree—he could easily have been born in the famous Waikato district on New Zealand’s north island rather than on the west coast of the United States.
Unusual Suspect is by the little known (in this part of the world), but very underrated Unusual Heat, a son of the great Nureyev, from a New Zealand-bred mare, Penpont, who was a winner over 1200 metres from 17 starts in North America.
Penpont is by the American-bred Crested Wave, who had a big impact in New Zealand, out of a mare by Todman’s terrific son Imposing, who is out of champion filly Black Willow, a daughter of Sobig (by Summertime).
Ironically, Unusual Suspect’s American part-owner, breeder and trainer, Barry Abrams, recognised that Unusual Suspect’s future as a stallion lay in the southern hemisphere despire the fact the handsome near black horse had won the 2010 Group 1 Hollywood Turf Cup (2400m, turf) at Hollywood Park.
Obviously, the entire’s pedigree connection to New Zealand was a catalyst for this. When Australian Thoroughbred Bloodstock’s Darren Dance bought a major slice of Unusual Suspect, syndicated him and set him for the 2011 Melbourne Cup—under the care of Mick Kent—Abrams, who had been battling cancer, had his ambitions almost fulfilled. Abrams retained an interest in the horse.
Unusual Suspect ran a sound, late-closing ninth behind Dunaden in the 2011 Melbourne Cup, and last year, after a failed trip to Dubai, came in 21st behind Green Moon. He finally broke through for his first Australian win in the Listed Werribee Cup (2600m) on December 16 before breaking down on a concrete-hard Flemington track in the Listed Bagot Handicap (2800m) on New Year’s Day.
Dance has advertised Unusual Suspect for sale as a stallion. VIEW
While Unusual Suspect gave the impression of being a strong, one-paced stayer, he has a lot of speed in his pedigree. He was a smart juvenile, who won races from 1200m to 2600m, and his sister, Golden Doc A, is a Group 1 winner of the Las Virgenes Stakes (1600m, Santa Anita) and two Listed races over 1200m.
Penpont’s dam, Imposing Star, was a fast winner at two over 1100m.
The third dam in Unusual Suspect’s pedigree, Black Willow, was a brilliant filly, who earned the reward of top 2YO filly in the 1973-74 season. She won six races from 1000m to 1600m, including the Group 1 Manawatu Sires’ Produce Stakes (1400m). Black Willow also is the dam of the high-class Melbourne mare English Charm, who was a multiple Stakes winner at distances from 1200m to 1600m.
Unusual Suspect’s sire, Unusual Heat, may have won only a Listed race over 1600m at Leopardstown in Ireland, but he has been something of a surprise packet at stud in California where his strike rate of Stakes winners (30) against winners (294) puts him in elite company.
Unusual Suspect was a very talented, good-looking, versatile and durable racehorse. We certainly didn’t get to see the best of him. I suspect he deserves more respect as a stallion prospect than I gave him at first glance.
Of course, the connections of the recently retired German-bred Lucas Cranach (br or blk h 2007, Mamool (IRE)-Lots Of Love (GER), by Java Gold (USA)), who finished third in the 2011 Melbourne Cup and won the 2012 Group 2 Peter Young Stakes (1800m) at Caulfield, face the same dilemma of trying to find a commercial stud with a gambler’s instinct.