TDN Q&A With Bluewater's Meg Levy


Meg Levy of Bluewater Sales

Among the top broodmare prospects to be sold at the Fasig-Tipton November Sale is a half-sister to this year's European superstar Alpha Centauri (Ire) (Mastercraftsman {Ire}). The Niarchos family runner proved to be the standout filly of her generation this year, sweeping the G1 Irish 1000 Guineas, G1 Coronation S., G1 Falmouth S. and G1 Prix Jacques le Marois before finishing 3/4 of a length behind the Classic-winning Laurens (Fr) (Siyouni {Fr}) in Leopardtown's G1 Matron S. in September. The 'TDN Rising Star' emerged from the Matron with a chip in a fetlock, according to the owners' racing manager Alan Cooper, and was retired. Alpha Centauri and her half-sister Galileo Gal (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}), entered in the November sale as hip 198, hail from one of the classic Niarchos families, and will sell for her owner, Gary Barber, at the Night of the Stars on Nov. 4. The TDN paid a visit to the stunning chestnut at Bluewater Farm, and sat down with consignor Meg Levy to talk about the filly.

TDN: So often, the best racemares aren't the best producers, but Galileo Gal's third dam Miesque was both one of the great racemares and great broodmares of all time.

ML: I'd say that's a huge testament to the Niarchos family and their breeding program, because there's a lot more to it than just nicking and breeding the best to the best, as we all know. In this case, with Galileo Gal being a half-sister to probably the best filly of her year in Alpha Centauri, it means that there will be an ability for the pedigree to move forward. She's a young mare, so that ability to flush out the pedigree, so to speak, at least in the first dam, is very exciting. Galileo Gal herself is a sister to two others–a 2-year-old filly and a yearling filly, so that really helps as well. It helps the pedigree move forward commercially, so there are a lot of opportunities. Alpha Centauri is an absolute memory of Miesque, really, with her gameness, and her physical drive. They don't look very much alike. Alpha Centauri is a throwback, a large imposing individual, whereas Miesque was not, but the blood is there.

TDN: Who can you imagine Galileo Gal being bred to?

ML: Galileo Gal has good opportunities to be bred in America, in Europe, in Japan or in Australia. The Danzig line has worked very well with Galileo mares, obviously. With a horse like War Front, you have examples like Roly Poly. You have another example of the Danzig line in Cover Song, by Fastnet Rock (Aus). In America, War Front is the most obvious choice. Galileo himself, in 2018 has been the broodmare sire of 29 black-type winners, which is pretty outstanding stuff. I think she has huge international appeal. She's really a cosmopolitan collectible, as it were, and would work with sires in Japan like Deep Impact (Jpn).

TDN: She concluded her racing career in August. What did you think of her when she arrived here?

ML: Waiting for a filly like this to get off the van is a pretty exciting time. Alpha Centauri was right in the middle of her string of four Grade Is, so when I heard that Mr. Barber was sending the half-sister to Alpha Centauri, I was sitting here waiting like it was Christmas. I was actually particularly impressed when she got off the van because she's a great mover, she's a really, really good-looking filly. She has really good lines, she's got a much bigger hip than I thought she would have. She has a lovely top line and she just moves like silk. Conformationally, Galileo Gal reminds me of some of the best broodmares that I've been around. She's medium-sized, she's correct, she's a great mover, she has a wonderfully balanced top line, and most of all, what I look for in a broodmare, is a really intelligent eye. I love an intelligent eye on a broodmare, it just bespeaks quality. I feel like I can see through that into East of Moon, Miesque, you can see that blood coming through that eye. No one who has come in the barn has looked at her and not asked who she was.

TDN: Talk about her personality.

ML: She's actually been quite kind to be around, she wants to do what you want her to do. The day we saw the personality was with other horses which I also think is important for a broodmare because the broodmares raise the foals, and teach the foals about the world, so the strong-minded broodmares that we've seen in the field, so to speak, are the ones that usually raise the good foals that have a competitive desire, so I do like that about her as well.

TDN: Why is Gary Barber selling her?

ML: Mr. Barber's first and foremost love is racing. We have sold fillies for him over the last seven or eight years. Breeding isn't his main focus, so once a filly is finished with her racing career, usually they are presented at market. It's so exciting to be around those fillies who are from this kind of family and express that quality. It's a real connection for me, and having those fillies here makes it a relief when they sell because it's such a challenge, and you really want them to go to a great home, not just for them, but for their owners so they have the opportunity to go on.

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