Freshman Sires Overview: Part II

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Royal Applause (GB), a stalwart of the Royal Studs who has been retired from covering duties since 2014, has enjoyed something of a renaissance in recent years largely thanks to his son Acclamation (GB) and grandson Dark Angel (Ire).

Numerically, Gutaifan (Ire) led the first-season sires’ list last season and he is one of at least eight sons of Dark Angel at stud in Europe. In 2020, two of those will have their first runners, but it is a son of Dark Angel’s sire Acclamation who is tipped for the top spot this time.

Mehmas (Ire)
Acclamation (GB) – Lucina (GB) (Machiavellian), Tally-Ho Stud

It is easy to see why there is plenty of expectation when it comes to the first-crop runners of Mehmas. For a start, he’s bred on the same Acclamation-Machiavellian cross as Dark Angel, whose stature in the stallion ranks has grown year on year since his retirement to stud in 2008. Then there’s the fact that Mehmas has the largest number of juveniles among his peers, with 146 potentially able to start this year.

Furthermore, his residency at Tally-Ho Stud, which is also home to Kodiac (GB), bodes well. Tony O’Callaghan and his family have a substantial broodmare band of their own with which to give their stallions a start in addition to their client base.

A Roger Marley/John Cullinan collaboration at the Craven Breeze-up Sale of 2016, Mehmas was sold for 170,000gns in mid-April and did little wrong through an admirable juvenile season, after which he was retired. He won his first start less than three weeks after his sales appearance, and followed that up with a good conditions race win on Newbury’s Lockinge card. His placed finishes behind Caravaggio in the G2 Coventry S., Churchill (Ire) in the G1 National S., and The Last Lion (Ire) in the G1 Middle Park S. stack up well, and he is a dual Group 2 winner in his own right, notably beating Blue Point (Ire) in the Richmond S.

Estidhkaar (Ire)
Dark Angel (Ire) – Danetime Out (Ire) (Danetime {Ire}), Tara Stud

 Estidhkaar was also a dual Group 2-winning juvenile over seven furlongs and he returned at three to run second to Muhaarar (Ire) in the G3 Greenham S. before a crack at the Guineas, in which he finished down the field behind Gleneagles (Ire). The half-brother to Toormore (Ire) concluded his racing career by winning over a mile and beating Kool Kompany (Ire) when landing the listed Ben Marshall S. at Newmarket.

Sheikh Hamdan raced Estidhkaar and has a couple of his more expensive yearlings to run for him among the 106 juveniles listed.

Markaz (Ire)
Dark Angel (Ire) – Folga (GB) (Atraf {GB}), Derrinstown Stud

 A brother to the top-class Mecca’s Angel (Ire), Markaz has remained within the Shadwell fold, taking up residence at Derrinstown following a three-season career which yielded three wins and seven places from 19 starts. His victories came in each of those seasons in training: Markaz won an Ascot maiden at two and the G3 Criterion S. and G3 Chipchase S. in the following years. The grey has 78 juveniles this year.

Old favourites
While the 27-year-old wonder that is Pivotal (GB) is still covering a select book at Cheveley Park Stud, his perennially popular son Kyllachy (GB) was stood down two years ago but he is represented at the same stud by one of two stallion sons. Meanwhile, Pearl Secret (GB) is waving an increasingly diminishing flag for the Byerley Turk line.

Twilight Son (GB)
Kyllachy (GB) – Twilight Mistress (GB) (Bin Ajwaad {Ire}), Cheveley Park Stud

Twilight Son only ever raced over six furlongs but this he did most effectively, winning both starts at two and continuing this streak at three while jumping from handicaps straight into the G1 Haydock Sprint Cup. His sole defeat in two seasons came when second to Muhaarar (Ire) in the G1 QIPCO British Champions Sprint. At four, he added the G1 Diamond Jubilee S. to his record.

The Godfrey Wilson homebred is a half-brother to the Group 3-winning sprinter Music Master (GB) (Piccolo {GB}), who is now resident at Throckmorton Court Stud. Twilight Son was well supported and has more than 120 juveniles in his first crop. Kevin Ryan is training the most expensive of these, out of Cheveley Park Stud’s former G2 Lowther S. winner Soar (GB) (Danzero {Aus}), for Sheikh Mohammed Obaid.

Pearl Secret (GB)
Compton Place (GB) – Our Little Secret (Ire) (Rossini), Chapel Stud

There’s something rather likeable about Pearl Secret with his paint-splashed belly and four white socks. The market wasn’t awash with his stock, and he has less than 50 2-year-olds to run for him, but it won’t be surprising if he gets some early winners as he had some well-made yearlings which have found their way into the stables of Richard Hannon, Michael Bell and Henry Candy among others.

A proper speedball, as one can expect from a graduate of Whitsbury Manor Stud, Pearl Secret won the Beverley Bullet and the G2 Temple S. among his seven victories, and he was a length and a half behind Sole Power (GB) when third in the G1 King’s Stand S. He also won his only start at two in late October of that year, after which he raced for another five seasons.

More Joy For Sadler’s Wells Line
When Bobby’s Kitten joined Lanwades Stud in 2017, he was the first son of the American champion Kitten’s Joy to retire to stud in Britain. He was later followed by Roaring Lion, sadly lost last summer in New Zealand, and Hawkbill, who has now moved to Japan.

Fellow Sadler’s Wells-line descendants from the same intake are Coolmore’s G1 Poule d’Essai des Poulains winner The Gurkha (Ire) and Parish Hall (Ire), who is standing at his breeder/trainer Jim Bolger’s Redmondstown Stud.

Bobby’s Kitten
Kitten’s Joy – Celestial Woods (Forestry), Lanwades Stud

 This Ken and Sarah Ramsey homebred was, like many of his sire’s stock, a turf specialist in America, winning the GIII Pilgrim S. over an extended mile at two before running third to Outstrip (GB) in the G1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf. He put his own name on the Breeders’ Cup roll of honour the following year when dropping back in trip for the G1 Turf Sprint, in which he beat successful young stallion No Nay Never. His sole start on this side of the Atlantic came for Dermot Weld when routing his opposition by 8½ lengths in the listed Cork S. on heavy ground.

Bobby’s Kitten will have had the backing of both his breeders’ and Kirsten Rausing’s mares among those responsible for his 77 juveniles. He’s a long shot in the first-season sire betting market but he may just surprise a few people.

The Gurkha (Ire)
Galileo (Ire) – Chintz (Ire) (Danehill Dancer {Ire}), Coolmore

We didn’t see much of The Gurkha on the racecourse but what we did see was breathtaking, particularly when blazing a trail in the relocated Poule d’Essai des Poulains at Deauville.

Colic surgery during his 2-year-old season prevented him from racing at two and it later curtailed his racing career altogether when he underwent further surgery for a displaced colon in August of the following year. But in the four short months that he raced he became a Classic winner and overturned the English Guineas winner Galileo Gold (Ire) in the G1 Sussex S., having finished runner-up to him in the G1 St James’s Palace S. He was also second to Hawkbill on his one try beyond a mile in the G1 Coral-Eclipse S.

Unsurprisingly, he has received good backing and is one of seven freshmen whose juveniles run to three figures—117 in this case. His dam was a decent juvenile, who won on debut in June and later triumphed in the G3 C L Weld Park S.

Parish Hall (Ire)
Teofilo (Ire) – Halla Siamsa (Ire) (Montjeu {Ire}), Redmondstown Stud

 Between 2006 and 2012, Jim Bolger won the G1 Dewhurst S. five times, with Teofilo and his son Parish Hall both being homebred, as well as New Approach (Ire)’s son Dawn Approach (Ire). Inbred 3×3 to Sadler’s Wells, Parish Hall was absent for his 3-year-old season but returned to win the following year’s G3 Diamond S., as well as the G3 Royal Whip S. at five and the listed Alleged S. as a 6-year-old.

Retired to the Bolger family’s Redmondstown Stud, he covered 30 mares in his first season, mostly owned by the trainer himself. Knowing Bolger’s aptitude for getting his juveniles out early, it wouldn’t have been surprising to see the odd Parish Hall 2-year-old racing in the next few weeks had Ireland been allowed to continue. Keep an eye out for them once we’re back up and running.

New Bay (GB)
Dubawi (Ire) – Cinammon Bay (GB) (Zamindar), Ballylinch Stud

Darley will have relished the success of Night Of Thunder’s first crop last season and the Ballylinch Stud team will be hoping that lightning can strike again when it comes to sons of Dubawi as they has the first runners of New Bay to look forward to this year.

Like The Gurkha, he is a French Classic winner, though this time in Prix du Jockey Club, beating the classy Highland Reel (Ire), having run second in the Poule d’Essai des Poulains to Make Believe (GB). He later added the G2 Prix Guillaume d’Ornano and G2 Prix Niel to his CV before running third to Derby winner Golden Horn (GB) in the Arc, and returning at four he won the G3 Prix Gontaut-Biron.

New Bay not only shares his broodmare sire Zamindar with Kingman (GB) but also his third dam Bahamian (GB). This is also the excellent Juddmonte family of stallions Oasis Dream (GB), Beat Hollow (GB) and Martaline (GB). We may see more of his 77 juveniles through the second half of the season.

Pride Of Dubai (Aus)
Street Cry (Ire) – Al Anood (Aus) (Danehill), Coolmore

Shuttle stallion Pride Of Dubai is already out in front on the first-season sires’ table in Australia and he has 121 members of his debut Northern Hemisphere crop to come once the European season gets going. A top-class juvenile himself, he won the G1 Blue Diamond S. and G1 Inglis Sires over six and seven furlongs respectively and, while his name may not yet be completely familiar to a European audience, he does hail from the family of two decent current stallions. His dam Al Anood is a half-sister to the G1 Prix de Diane winner Rafha (GB), who has also found fame in her second career as the dam of Invincible Spirit (Ire) and Kodiac (GB).

Belardo (Ire)
Lope De Vega (Ire) – Danaskaya (Danehill, Kildangan Stud

Lope De Vega has been successful in both hemispheres and one of his early offspring to put his name in lights was Belardo. Prior to his victory in the G1 Darley Dewhurst S., he had won on debut in June and gone on to win the listed Denford Stud S.

Some decent efforts at three—including a fourth-place finish in the Guineas and second to Solow (Fr) in the G1 Queen Elizabeth II S., he came back at four to win the G1 Lockinge S. and finish runner-up to Tepin in the G1 Queen Anne S. on what transpired to be his final appearance.

His dam was also a decent juvenile, who was third to Airwave (GB) in the G1 Cheveley Park S., and Belardo has a decent group of 92 juveniles from his first book.

Bow Creek (Ire)
Shamardal – Beneventa (GB) (Most Welcome {GB}), Haras du Logis

In seasons to come more sons of Shamardal will be joining the stallion ranks—not least last season’s Group 1-winning trio of Pinatubo (Ire), Victor Ludorum (Ire) and Earthlight (Ire). Bow Creek was an honourable international flagbearer for his sire, with his three Group 2 wins coming in Britain, Ireland and Australia in a 24-race career compiled over four seasons.

Bow Creek was at his best over a mile but his dam won at up to a mile and a half when landing the listed Aphrodite S. at Newmarket in the same season that she won the G3 Dahlia S. He covered 38 mares in his first book and it’s likely that most of their offspring will have remained in France, though one is listed as in training with Mario Hofer in Germany.

Dariyan (Fr)
Shamardal – Daryakana (Fr) (Selkirk), Haras de Bonneval

Unraced at three, Dariyan won the G2 Prix Eugene Adam as a 3-year-old and was later third to Highland Reel (Ire) in the G1 Hong Kong Vase, a race won by his dam six years earlier. Dariyan earned his own Group 1 laurels the following season in the Prix Ganay and was one of France’s busiest first-season stallions when he retired to stud in 2017, covering 90 mares. Among the listed trainers of his first 2-year-olds are Freddy Head, Mikel Delzanges, Fabrice Chappet and Nicolas Clement.

Goken (Fr)
Kendargent (Fr) – Gooseley Chope (Fr) (Indian Rocket {GB}), Haras de Colleville

Kendargent made an eye-catching start from relatively humble beginnings and small crops when retired to stud by Guy Pariente, breeder of his dual Group 3-winning son Goken, who has now joined his sire at Haras de Colleville.

An early winner at two over five furlongs with multiple group placings that year, Goken developed into a more than useful sprinter and was third in the G1 King’s Stand S. after joining Kevin Ryan from Henri-Alex Pantall. Rather unusually, his dam won over six furlongs on the Flat and also over hurdles.

Goken wasn’t short of support in his first season, with 93 mares on the books. His former trainer Pantall has several of Goken’s 2-year-olds in his stable.

Monsun’s Flat Hopes
Monsun (Ger) sired plenty of high-class Flat horses, mostly in the staying bracket, and of his good colts to have retired to stud many have subsequently been acquired by the National Hunt sector, where their class and stamina are highly-prized assets. Monsun died in 2012 and two colts born in his later crops have their first Flat runners this season.

Vadamos (Fr)
Monsun (Ger) – Celebre Vadala (Fr) (Peintre Celebre), Tally-Ho Stud

As previously referred to in the case of Mehmas, the team at Tally-Ho has thrown its weight behind Vadamos, who has 130 first-crop juveniles. He was a versatile performer, winning between a mile and a mile and a half, but his best performances were all at a mile, including the G1 Prix du Moulin and three Group 2 wins in France and Germany. As is typical of this sireline, he was a durable individual, too, competing through four seasons, winning eight of his 20 starts and finishing second on another five occasions.

Monsun really deserves to have a decent son continuing the line on the Flat and the well-bred Vadamos, from the family of Group/Grade 1 winners Val Royal and Valixir (Fr), has been given an early chance to do just that.

Protectionist (Ger)
Monsun (Ger) – Patineuse (Ire) (Peintre Celebre), Gestut Rottgen

Bred on the same cross as Vadamos is another classy individual, the Melbourne Cup winner Protectionist, who hails from a smart family most readily associated with the Wildensteins.

A winner at two in his native Germany, Protectionist won the listed Derby Trial the following year but his Classic season was then derailed after a run-in with a deer in the forest where he was trained. He bounced back at four to win the G2 Hansa-Preis before spreading his wings first to France to claim the G2 Prix Kergorlay, then to Australia for one of the world’s most famous staying races. He failed to fire when remaining in Australia for the following year but, reunited with his original trainer Andreas Wohler, he won another three races in Germany, including the G1 Grosser Preis von Berlin over a mile and a half.

Still owned by Australian Bloodstock, who bought into Protectionist during his 4-year-old season, he has received support from them at stud and at the sales in Germany, and a number of his stock will be trained in Europe with the hope of later contesting some of Australia’s middle-distance races.

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