Value Sires Part 6: Proven Sires

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Gleneagles | Coolmore

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As the 2022 breeding season approaches, we bring our Value Sires series to a close by shining the spotlight on 10 sires with their first crops four and older that appear poised to deliver breeders value. Though it seems at times as if the chasm between the elite proven sires and the unproven pretenders is ever-widening, driven by the often ruthless nature of the auction marketplace, there is still value to be found among the lesser-priced proven sires. We have opted to make the cutoff fee for this exercise £/€20,000, and have listed the sires alphabetically, with the three selections for the Value Podium placed at the bottom.

Bated Breath (GB) (Dansili {GB}) goes up to a career-high £15,000 at Juddmonte's Banstead Manor Stud for 2022 off a year in which he recorded his highest-ever progeny earnings of £3.52-million. The sire who has long been a reliable source of winners and class got his belated first Grade/Group 1 winner at the tail end of 2020 when Juddmonte homebred Viadera (GB) won the GI Matriarch S. in California, and Viadera and her full-sister Sacred Bridge (GB) were among Bated Breath's 2021 flagbearers, with Viadera adding the GII Ballston Spa S. for Chad Brown and Sacred Bridge proving among the top 2-year-old fillies in Ireland for Ger Lyons, winning the G3 Round Tower S. and Listed Tipperary S. Bated Breath tallied eight total stakes winners in 2021, six of them group/graded. Two more of those were in America-the highly talented GII Edgewood S. winner Gift List (GB) and the GIII Jimmy Durante S. winner Tezzaray (GB), while Space Traveler (GB), his highest earner of the year, won York's Listed Ganton S. in June for Richard Fahey before transferring to Brendan Walsh in America and finishing second in the GI Woodbine Mile. Bated Breath's progeny clearly enjoy America, adding lucrative re-sale potential to his value. Bated Breath also had the Aga Khan's Makaloun (Fr) win the G3 Prix de Guiche, a French Classic prep, and Agiato (GB) win multiple stakes in Italy last year.

Belardo (GB) (Lope De Vega {Ire}) is one that could be worth a try on a downswing, his fee dipping to €9,000 for 2022. Darley Kildangan's G1 Dewhurst S. and G1 Lockinge S. winner didn't match the heights in 2021 that he had hit as a freshman sire in 2020, but his first-year performance was such that he isn't worth giving up on just yet. In 2020, Belardo recorded three first-season group winners-joint best among his sire crop and more than Mehmas (Ire)-and four overall stakes winners among his 13 winners. The Listed Garnet S. winner Elysium (Ire)-who won The Curragh's G3 Park S. at two–was Belardo's lone black-type winner last year, but his progeny continued to win at a good clip, and from five winners already in 2022 he can count Santa Anita's Listed Blue Norther S. scorer Bellabel (Ire). Belardo was not himself an early spark that fizzled, and it could be worth a roll of the dice that his strong start to 2022 continues.

Dandy Man (Ire) (Mozart {GB})'s 2021 tally of stakes winners was his highest annual ever at six, and he remains at €15,000 at Ballyhane Stud for the third successive season. A multiple Group 1 sire who is a reliable source of speed and who gets 2-year-olds that train on, Dandy Man's 2021 flagbearer was the Davison family's 3-year-old filly Mooneista (Ire) (Dandy Man {Ire}), who won The Curragh's G2 Sapphire S. and Naas's Listed Woodlands S. His Happy Romance (Ire), the winner of four of her seven starts in 2020 at two, trained on last year to win the G3 Hackwood S. and Listed Chelmer Fillies' S., while The Highway Rat (Ire) won four times last year including Dundalk's G3 Mercury S.

Global Group 1 sire Iffraaj (GB) (Zafonic {GB}) stands this year for £17,500 at Darley's Dalham Hall Stud, and dips below 20,000 for the first time since 2013, despite his 2021 tally of Northern Hemisphere stakes winners (9) being his highest since 2018. Iffraaj's 2021 flagbearers included the G2 Al Fahidi Fort winner Land Of Legends (Ire); Germany's G3 Goldene Peitsche winner Kitty Marion (GB) and the G3 Prix Djebel scorer Fast Raaj (Fr), not to mention a handful of stakes winners Down Under.

Intello (Ger) (Galileo {Ire}), at €8,000, is down to four figures for the first time in his stud career at Haras du Quesnay, and that is off a season during which he provided six stakes winners and an additional 15 stakes horses. Those were topped by the German Group 2 winner Waldbiene (Fr) as well as the G3 Prix la Force-winning 3-year-old Adhamo (Ire), and the Group 3-winning Dawn Intello (Fr) and Bubble Smart (GB), who was also Group 1-placed.

Kodi Bear (Ire) (Kodiac {GB}) made a promising start in his first season with runners in 2020 when he recorded 18 winners, one black-type winner and five black-type runners. He built on that promise last year, winding up the season with four black-type winners and seven stakes horses. Kodi Bear was a listed-winning 2-year-old who was second to Belardo in the Dewhurst and trained on to win the G2 Celebration Mile at three, and his runners are showing both his early brilliance and scope to train on. His flagbearer thus far is his second-crop G2 Railway S. winner and G2 Norfolk S., GII Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint and G1 Phoenix S.-placed Go Bears Go (Ire), while Mystery Angel (Ire) and Measure Of Magic (Ire) were winners and stakes-placed at two before winning black-type races at three, and in Mystery Angel's case, finish second in the Oaks. Kodi Bear does present a bit of a risk, his fee more than doubling to €15,000 this year at Rathbarry Stud, but he appears on track for a very productive stud career.

The ever-reliable Oasis Dream (GB) (Green Desert) just never seems to slow down, and the Juddmonte elder statesman enters his 18th covering season fresh off the back of his Native Trail (GB) winning the G1 Dewhurst S. and G1 National S. and earning European champion 2-year-old honours. And it wasn't just Native Trail carrying Oasis Dream last year: he had seven Northern Hemisphere stakes winners and four group winners, not to mention his 18 stakes winners (10 group) last year as a broodmare sire. Oasis Dream is an incredibly consistent source of class no matter where he is located in a pedigree, and at the age of 22 continues to sire stakes winners at a rate of 9.4% worldwide, with 18 Group 1 winners to his name.

VALUE PODIUM

BronzeAwtaad (Ire): After recording one stakes winner and 14 winners in his first season with runners in 2020, Derrinstown Stud's G1 Irish 2000 Guineas winner Awtaad (Ire) (Cape Cross {Ire}) stepped pleasingly forward in 2021, notching five stakes winners-a joint second behind only Mehmas (Ire) in his sire crop-and six stakes horses. His headliner was the Royal Ascot Sandringham H. winner Create Belief (Ire)–who later added the G3 Desmond S.–and the Leopardstown maiden winner Ebeko (Ire), went on to win the Listed Zuma Beach S. at Santa Anita. Bellosa (Ire) was one of the most eye-catching winners at Newmarket's Craven meeting in April when breaking her maiden at first-asking by seven lengths before returning four weeks later to the Rowley Mile to take the Listed King Charles II S. Awtaad, a Sheikh Hamdan homebred, comes from a family packed with class, being by Cape Cross out of a winning daughter of Shamardal who has produced four stakes horses and is from the family of Seattle Slew, and he is clearly imparting class. With his fee cut in half to €5,000 for 2022, he looks an interesting gamble.

SilverTwilight Son (GB): Cheveley Park Stud's dual Group 1-winning sprinter Twilight Son (GB) (Kyllachy {GB}) made a promising start with his first runners in 2020, registering 22 winners including the Italian Group 3-winning Aria Importante (GB). He kicked on in his second season last year, notching five stakes winners. While Aria Importante trained on in Italy to win a Group 3 and three listed races, Twilight Jet (GB) became his sire's highest-rated runner thus far when, in a remarkable 11-start juvenile campaign, he won the G3 Cornwallis S. and was placed in the G2 Gimcrack S. and G2 Champagne S. Twilight Son also had last year the talented 3-year-old filly Twilight Spinner (GB), who won the Listed Cecil Frail S. by 6 1/2 lengths in her third start, and the G2 Richmond S. second Khunan (GB) among his eight stakes horses last year. Twilight Son won the G1 Sprint Cup at three and the G1 Diamond Jubilee S. at four so it shouldn't come as a surprise that his progeny are thriving with age, and though he gets a very mild fee increase he is very interesting at £7,000.

GoldGleneagles (Ire): After making positive headway in his first two seasons with runners in 2019 and 2020, Coolmore's four-time Group 1 and dual Classic-winning Gleneagles (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}) hit new heights last year, his 11 stakes winners on the year the best of his sire crop, edging out even Night Of Thunder (Ire). Gleneagles also led his cohort last year by black-type horses (19), group winners (six) and winners (85), and posted his first Group 1 winner in the Prix de Royallieu and G2 Ribblesdale S. scorer Loving Dream (Ire). On the general sires' table, his 11 stakes winners last year outpointed his barnmates Camelot (GB) and No Nay Never (Ire), as well as the likes of Invincible Spirit (Ire). Despite his own reputation as a miler, Gleneagles's progeny have proven versatile. In addition to the middle-distance Loving Dream, his 2021 group winners included the G2 Airlie Stud S.-winning 2-year-old Velocidad (GB); the 1800m G2 Kilboy Estate S. winner Insinuendo (Ire); 2000 metre G2 Prix Greffulhe winner Baby Rider (Fr); and G2 German 1000 Guineas winner Novemba (Ger). Gleneagles dips to €15,000 from €25,000 for 2022.

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