Great Gran To The Rescue At Chasemore


The Lope De Vega filly has now been fostered by her great grand-dam Veiled Beauty | Chasemore Farm


Most young mothers call on their own mothers or even grandmothers for help with childcare but that is rarely the case with Thoroughbred mares. At Chasemore Farm, however, a slightly unusual solution has been found to help a foal rejected by her first-time mother four days after she was born. 

The mare in question is the G3 Prestige S. winner Boomer (GB) (Kingman {GB}), whose maternal role has now been taken on by her grand-dam Veiled Beauty (Royal Academy). The 22-year-old was one of the earliest broodmare purchases by owner/breeder Andrew Black and was retired last year but Veiled Beauty's instincts remain strong and so far she appears to be the perfect stand-in to care for her young great grand-daughter. 

“There's always a story, every year something happens and it's quite often bad, so it's nice to get a silver lining,” Andrew Black told TDN on Thursday.

“We retired Veiled Beauty last year after sterling service for many years and you'd almost say that she is the best mother on the place. I'm always slightly wary of her when she has a foal at foot as she's very protective. She always stands between you and the foal giving you that look. But she has just been the most amazing mother and produced so many healthy animals in her time so she felt like a good choice. She's very well in herself and doesn't really look like a 22-year-old mare.” 

He added, “We're still touching wood, because these things can go wrong, but the signs are extremely positive at a relatively early stage and we think this is going to be a solid union.”

Veiled Beauty raced just once for her breeder Prince Khalid Abdullah before being sold on but, as is so often the case with Juddmonte mares, she has formed a useful dynasty at Chasemore Farm, notably through her Grade II-placed and treble-winning daughter Wall Of Sound (GB) (Singspiel {Ie}), who is in turn the dam of Boomer and the Listed-placed multiple winner Uncle Bryn (GB) (Sea The Stars {Ire}). Over the last weekend Boomer delivered her first foal by Lope De Vega (Ire) and initially appeared to be taking to motherhood well.

Black said, “It was a bit alarming as it was four days in when she rejected her. We've never had a rejection of any sort. We know that it happens but usually when it happens it happens quite quickly. It's quite unusual to be a perfect mother for four days and then reject the foal. It's impossible to know why but we are looking for signs of mastitis or something like that that could be hurting the mare, but there's nothing obvious.”

Having posted a photograph on Twitter on Wednesday of the filly foal with a teddy bear in her stable for company, Black then delivered a heartwarming update 24 hours later showing the filly bounding around a paddock alongside her great grand-dam. He plans for Boomer to be covered by another son of Shamardal, the champion juvenile Pinatubo (Ire), this season.

“It's kind of a nice outcross for a mare by Kingman out of a Singspiel mare. I'm very interested to see how Pinatubo works out and I hope he does work out because he is a nice animal to have in the UK if he's a good sire. So often you see that a stallion doesn't necessarily produce to himself and his pedigree doesn't scream 2-year-old at me at all, so I'm not necessarily expecting him to be a sire of 2-year-olds. I tend to believe the pedigree rather than the animal in terms of what they are going to produce but I am very excited about Pinatubo and it's nice to have Lope Y Fernandez in the country too as another option from the Shamardal line.”

Black naturally has a fondness for the Veiled Beauty family having had the mare in his broodmare band for 13 years.

He said, “She wasn't much good herself and her first foal didn't do much but her second foal was [Group 3 winner] The Cheka (GB). I bought her after The Cheka's 2-year-old year. We still have Wall Of Sound and a lot of members of that family, and it has become really our number one family, with Boomer being a Group 3 winner, and Uncle Bryn.”

Wall Of Sound is currently in foal to Sea The Moon (Ger), thus carrying a three-parts-sibling to Uncle Bryn, and is then set to return to Kingman.

Black added, “We thought Sea The Moon was a very good proxy for Sea The Stars. We like him and this he is a very good value stallion. We have a nice [2-year-old] Le Havre (Ire) filly from her who had a few issues so we kept her, but we have dealt with the issues and I think she could be a very exciting horse. She is as good as anything her mother has ever produced.”


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