Sisfahan Emulates Sire Isfahan In The Deutsches Derby

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Sisfahan | Racingfotos.com

Following in the steps of his sire Isfahan (Ger), Sisfahan (Fr) came out on top of the cluster of contenders for Sunday's G1 IDEE Deutsches Derby at Hamburg to realise a dream for Darius Racing. Runner-up in the 11-furlong Listed Derby Trial at Dusseldorf May 30, the €20,000 Arqana Autumn Sale purchase was waited with in rear of the pack early by Andrasch Starke from his wide draw. Remaining towards the tail but in touch straightening for home, the Henk Grewe-trained chestnut was sent towards the far rail as Stall Nizza's Alter Adler (Ger) (Adlerflug {Ger}) looked the winner striking for home towards the other side. Getting to the front inside the final 50 yards, the 11-1 shot beat that 10-3 favourite by 1 1/4 lengths to emulate Isfahan's success here five years ago, with the 31-1 outsider Imi (Ger) (Tertullian) 1 3/4 lengths back in third.

Campaigned in France at two, Sisfahan was runner-up over nine furlongs on debut at Lyon-la-Soie in October before going one better at the expense of the useful Fabre runner Saranac (Fr) (Gleneagles {Ire}) over an extra furlong at Lyon-Parilly the following month. Beaten by the re-opposing Aff Un Zo (Ger) (Kallisto {Ger}) in the Derby Trial last time, he had progressed notably in the interim and while some will point to the fact that he benefitted from the guile of Starke, the same wide tactics had failed in the G3 Stutenpreis earlier on the card when employed by Theo Bachelot on the favourite Amazing Grace (Ger) (Protectionist {Ger}). Starke, a genuine legend of the German weighing room whose first success in this came on Robertico (GB) (Robellino) in 1998, was equalling the record of eight victories set by Gerhard Streit from 1938-1961.

Born in Stade near Hamburg, Starke was in ebullient mood. “Hamburg, the king is back!,” he exclaimed. “There is always so much speculation prior to this race, is the starting stall number good or bad, have I made the right choice and so on. I am not excluding myself here, mistakes are always made, but I had confidence in him and chose him. He is such a lightly-raced horse, he ran only once this year when he was second in Dusseldorf where I sent him too early, so I decided to wait longer today and it was absolutely right.”

Grewe was registering a first Derby victory and said, “It is unbelievable and I'm so emotional. I feel so relieved with the pressure to win this race now gone–it is done. It is so nice that Andrasch was on the horse, my whole family is here today and I never even saw where he was positioned in the race, it was only in the final turn that I saw that he was still going strong. He is a great horse and it is an abolute dream today.” Owner Stefan Oschmann added, “Every owner dreams of winning the Derby and for me winning it with a son of Isfahan makes it very special. I was quite hopeful and now we are completely overwhelmed and so happy.”

Sisfahan, who hails from the first crop of his sire, is the only known foal out of the twice-winning Kendalee (Fr) (Kendargent {Fr}) whose dam Zandalee (Fr) (Trempolino) is a granddaughter of the Raise a Native mare Only a Native. Her other descendants include the GIII Miss Grillo S. winner Maram (Sahm).

Sunday, Hamburg, Germany
IDEE 152ND DEUTSCHES DERBY-G1, €650,000, Hamburg, 7-4, 3yo, c/f, 12fT, 2:34.56, g/s.
1–SISFAHAN (FR), 128, c, 3, by Isfahan (Ger)
     1st Dam: Kendalee (Fr), by Kendargent (Fr)
     2nd Dam: Zandalee (Fr), by Trempolino
     3rd Dam: Areej, by Green Dancer

1ST BLACK TYPE WIN; 1ST GROUP WIN, 1ST GROUP 1 WIN. (€20,000 Ylg '19 ARNOV). O-Darius Racing; B-Guy Pariente Holding (FR); T-Henk Grewe; J-Andrasch Starke. €390,000. Lifetime Record: 4-2-2-0, €403,840. Werk Nick Rating: A+. Click for the eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree.
2–Alter Adler (Ger), 128, c, 3, Adlerflug (Ger)–Artemisia (Ire), by Peintre Celebre. O-Stall Nizza; B-J Imm (GER); T-Waldemar Hickst. €130,000.
3–Imi (Ger), 128, c, 3, Tertullian–Imagery (Ger), by Monsun (Ger). (€40,000 Ylg '19 BBAGS). O-Holger Renz; B-Stall Ullmann (GER); T-Peter Schiergen. €78,000.
Margins: 1 1/4, 1 3/4, NK. Odds: 11.50, 3.30, 31.00.
Also Ran: Lord Charming (Ger), Aff Un Zo (Ger), Nordstrand (Ger), Sky Out (Ire), Alborz (Ger), Vallando (Ger), Dolcetto (Ger), Sun of Gold (GB), Santorini (Ger), Sea of Sands (Ger), Virginia Storm (Ger), Nacido (Ger), Diamantis (Ger), Sir Vulcano (Ger), Elegant Maximus (Ger), Sassoon (Ger), Liban (Ger). Click for the Racing Post result or the free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree.

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