By Brian Sheerin
Kevin Blake and Jack Cantillon have secured French sprinter Bouttemont (Ire), who they are targeting at a rare Group 1 double in the Flying Five and Prix de l'Abbaye, before standing the highly-rated son of Acclamation (GB) in Ireland.
Bouttemont will see out his career with current trainer Yann Barberot and will race in the colours of Syndicates.Racing, the successful ownership group which is headed by Cantillon.
A number of packages that include racing and breeding rights are available in the Group 3 winner with Blake describing the opportunity to invest in Bouttemont as a rare one for prospective investors.
The well-known racing pundit and breeder told TDN Europe, “We're doing things a little bit different in that people can get into Bouttemont for the remainder of his racing career and also secure breeding rights. This is a new partnership between Jack and myself and I really believe that Bouttemont is quite a compelling horse. He has the form, the profile, the looks and the pedigree. You'd like to think he'd be an appealing horse at that level.
“I think it's quite a unique thing that, anyone who gets involved in the horse at this stage, they get to rock up to the Irish Champions Festival in a few weeks' time and then on to Longchamp with a share in a Group 1 runner on Arc day. You don't usually get an opportunity to do this sort of thing without spending an awful lot of money so it's a pretty interesting opportunity.”
You won't have seen a stallion ad like this before… pic.twitter.com/nl8T64bPow
— Syndicates.Racing (@SyndicatesHQ) August 24, 2023
Bouttemont landed the Group 3 Barriere Prix de Meautry at Deauville a year ago. He posted an impressive speed figure when landing a listed contest at Chantilly over the minimum trip back in June and Blake says he is confident that the five-year-old has more to offer over five furlongs.
He explained, “Bouttemont ran to an RPR of 116 when he won the Prix Hampton at Chantilly and that's the performance that I'd be focussing in on because an RPR of 116 would have been good enough to win or finish second in any of the past five Flying Fives or Prix de l'Abbayes. The ability to be good and competitive in those races is there when he gets his conditions.”
Blake added, “Nearly every person we've bounced the idea of the horse to can see the case and have shown a lot of enthusiasm. In most cases, people wouldn't have been familiar with the horse but, when you explain what you're thinking and provide them with the information, they can see it and are quite excited by it. Again, it's the uniqueness of being able to get in on a racing and breeding level which is appealing to a lot of people.”
Bouttemont may represent Blake's first endeavour into standing a stallion but this won't be Cantillon's first rodeo. Far Above (Ire), who stands at Micheál Orlandi's Starfield Stud in County Westmeath, was sourced by Cantillon and covered 142 mares in his first season at stud.
Commenting on his latest stallion acquisition, Cantillon said, “I don't think people should get confused about the fact they could achieve two things that they might otherwise never achieve in their lifetime here. When you pick up the TDN over the next few weeks and months, you will read announcements about horses retiring to stud. This isn't a stallion retiring announcement. This is a stallion prospect being reimagined.
“What really excites me about this is that, not only do people have the opportunity to own a breeding right in one of the highest-rated sons of Acclamation, but they also have the upside of racing. People can accomplish the lifelong goal of owning a stallion and ultimate life goal of owning a Group 1 runner with a live chance as well.”
He added, “Dealing in cold hard facts, this horse gave a performance in the Prix Hampton which places him on a career higher-rating RPR than Mehmas and Dark Angel, achieved a top speed of 72 kilometers per hour in that race and almost broke the track record. He's an exceptionally-quick horse.
“I have always gotten on very well with Kevin and we have combined what we are good at here; identifying value and being a champion of the breeder, which involves new ways for breeders to get involved in our great game. Hopefully we have unearthed the next great stallion son of Acclamation and, who knows, he could be the last son of Acclamation who ever retires to stud. Even if he doesn't get his ground in his remaining Group 1 dates, he already has the proven credentials of the type of horse that thrives at stud in Ireland.”
Acclamation has already come up trumps with stallion sons Mehmas (Ire), Dark Angel (Ire) and more emerging as leading stallions having embarked on their careers at stud at modest fees initially.
The prowess of Acclamation as a sire of sires was illustrated by Blake in last month's TDN Europe and the research for that article is said to have convinced him to bring Bouttemont to stud in Ireland.
Blake said, “The origin story is that I was doing a piece on sires of sires for TDN Europe and Acclamation came out with the big double red circle around his name. This purchase was the product of a lot of groundwork as Jack and I have been working on partnering on a stallion for the last number of years. It took time to find the right one but Bouttemont jumped off the page.”
He added, “This part of the world is full of breeders that have had great experiences with Acclamation and his sons Dark Angel and Mehmas. We couldn't be more excited to help bring what might be the last new stallion son of Acclamation back home to Ireland and offer him to breeders at an accessible level.”