Mating Plans: Ecurie des Monceaux

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Sistercharlie | Horsephotos

By Emma Berry

Following a year in which group winners Sistercharlie (Ire) (Myboycharlie {Ire}), Intellogent (Ire) (Intello {Ger}) and Magic Wand (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}) continued to advertise internationally the merits of France’s leading breeding conglomerate and sales consignor Ecurie des Monceaux, further partners have been introduced to the fold, as well as a number of well credentialed young broodmares. However, we’ll start our overview of the farm’s 2019 matings plans with members of a family which helped to put Monceaux on the bloodstock map.

“We bought Platonic (GB) with Patricia Boutin from Fittocks Stud when we were first starting out and I think it’s fair to call this ‘P’ family our foundation family,” says Monceaux frontman Henri Bozo.

The 20-year-old daughter of Zafonic will be making a short trip to Haras de Bonneval to visit one of France’s most in-demand stallions, Siyouni (Fr).

“She’s an old mare now and we want to keep her here at Monceaux. She is not in foal as she was due late but she has a yearling colt by Le Havre (Ire) and a Camelot (GB) colt who was bought by Jeremy Brummitt and is in training with John Gosden for Bjorn Nielsen,” Bozo adds.

Platonic’s three daughters at the farm are Pacifique (Ire) (Montjeu {Ire}), Prudente (Ire) (Dansili {GB}) and Prudenzia (Ire) (Dansili {GB}), the latter being the dam of Classic heroine Chicquita (Ire) (Montjeu {Ire}) and also G2 Ribblesdale S. winner Magic Wand. Prudenzia will return to Galileo (Ire) after she delivers a foal by the champion sire, while Pacifique, currently in foal to Siyouni, will visit Kodiac (GB).

Bozo says, “Prudente is a full-sister to Prudenzia. Her first foal is a smart colt by Galileo. She is in foal to Siyouni and is going to Lope De Vega (Ire), who is a stallion we’re keen to support. His stats are very good and I think he gives a young mare a really good chance. Another mare we are sending him is Falling Leaves (Ire), a young mare by Galileo who is currently in foal to Fastnet Rock (Aus). My Rosie (Ire) we bought from Watership Down Stud in December 2017 and she has a nice Frankel (GB) colt, is in foal to Siyouni and will also go to Lope De Vega. Our policy is to go to proven stallions as much as we can.”

Sistercharlie’s four Grade I wins in 2018 culminated in her Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf success and it’s no surprise to hear that her owner Peter Brant has also now bought her 4-year-old half-sibling My Sister Nat (Fr) (Acclamation {GB}) and sent her to Chad Brown. Brant also has the 3-year-old colt Sottsass (Fr) (Siyouni {Fr}), who was a €340,000 yearling purchase and a winner last year at Clairefontaine on his second start. Their dam Starlet’s Sister (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}) is in foal to Dubawi and is booked for a return visit.

“We started with a bit of luck and had some nice mares. Now we have a second wave of exciting broodmares and among them is Starlet’s Sister. Her 3-year-old is a big hope for this year,” says Bozo.

Also among that second wave is Nuit Polaire (Ire) (Kheleyf), the dam of G1 Prix Jean Prat winner Intellogent who is now in foal to Siyouni and is another booked to go Dubawi. Darley’s flagship sire will also be sent the well-bred Group 3 winner Golden Valentine (Fr) (Dalakhani {Ire}).

“We own Golden Valentine in partnership with LNJ Foxwoods. She is a close relative of Goldikova and is in foal to Galileo. When we have what we think is a mare of high potential we try to go to the best stallions we can in the beginning,” Bozo explains.

The 10-year-old Militante (Ire) (Johannesburg) added to Monceaux’s group-race haul as a breeder last year via victory for her daughter Wind Chimes (GB) (Mastercraftsman {Ire}) in the G3 Prix Lieurey. Trained by Andre Fabre for Coolmore, Wind Chimes came close to Group 1 success when beaten just a head by Recoletos (Fr) in the Prix du Moulin and a neck when third in the Poule d’Essai des Pouliches. Her dam is now in foal to Frankel and will visit his sire Galileo this season.

Among the stallions with multiple Monceaux bookings is freshman Roaring Lion, who will cover Naissance Royale (Ire) (Giant’s Causeway), Louversey (GB) (Acclamation {GB}) and Secrete (Fr) (Cape Cross {Ire}).

“Naissance Royale was part of the start of Monceaux and is a mare we really love,” says Bozo. “She has a lovely yearling filly by Shalaa (Ire)—we’re very pleased by his foals—and she is now in foal to Invincible Spirit (Ire). He is a stallion who has been very good to us. I just love him. He seems now to be a very promising sire of sires here and in Australia.

“We were keen to support Roaring Lion. He is a superb animal, so courageous and consistent, and so easy to cross. Louversey, whom we bought in foal to Le Havre, is also going to him, as is Secrete, who is currently in foal to Galileo.”

He continues, “A newly acquired mare is Knyazhna (Ire) (Montjeu {Ire}). We bought her in foal to Siyouni at Arqana in December in partnership with Lordship Stud and Gary Chervenell. She will be going to Kingman (GB). He’s one of the young stallions we really believe in. He’s had an amazing start and you can only imagine that those nice 2-year-olds will only improve at three.”

Also booked to Juddmonte’s young stallion is Swiss Affair (GB), a winning Pivotal (GB) daughter of Swiss Lake who was bought into privately to form a partnership with her breeder Lordship Stud.

Bozo adds, “No Nay Never is another young stallion we are using. He has had a big jump in his fee but he is a good strong horse who you can use with mares who need a bit of power. The three mares we are sending to him are Frame Of Mind (Ire), a Wertheimer-bred Invincible Spirit mare in foal to Siyouni; Rhodalia (GB), a young Galileo mare out of Royal Highness (Ger) who is in foal to Lope De Vega, and Some Spirit (Ire) (Invincible Spirit {Ire}).

“We are also sending three mares to Sea The Stars (Ire), and two lovely mares to Le Havre, who is a proven sire who is easy to use, and I think the best is yet to come from him. We will also be using Zoustar (Aus), who has thrown some powerful 2-year-old types in Australia and we thought it would be worth giving him a go.”

Balancing proven sires with unproven is an annual headache for most breeders who, without a crystal ball, have no way of telling which of the young stallions will be a hit or a miss. Plenty missed out on the chance to use Wootton Bassett (GB) in his early days, and Bozo was no exception.

He says, “I am aware that we are very lucky to be able to afford the good stallions and there is more choice now, with farms such as Ballylinch, Tweenhills, Bouquetot, Etreham, etc., offering competition to Coolmore and Darley, but it’s not getting any cheaper. I wasn’t bold enough to use Wootton Bassett at the start but he was a good bet for those who did and we are now supporting him. Among the mares we will be sending to him is Pretty Spirit (Ire) (Invincible Spirit {Ire}), a half-sister to [G3 Autumn S. winner] Persian King (Ire) (Kingman {GB}) bought at Arqana in December.”

While Bozo has been the figurehead for Monceaux, he is quick to acknowledge the part played by a wide range of internationally successful breeders involved in the farm.

“All the mares are owned in different partnerships and it’s very interesting to hear from the various partners,” he explains. “Patricia Boutin does a lot of work for Lady Chryss O’Reilly and Edouard de Rothschild and I’ve been working with her for a long time. I am also helped greatly by Camilla Trotter who provides me with so much good analysis, nicks and figures, which is wonderfully done. And of course there is much input from the partners, so it’s a big think tank for three months. The first thing we want is to produce a good racehorse and the commercial success comes after that.”

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