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first-season stallions The market and the players who form it don’t always get it right. The next important step in a stallion’s commercial career is its first crop of two-year-olds and how they perform through their first season. At this stage perceptions are based upon what has happened on the racecourse, but any answers given or suggested can only be provisional. There are some great stallions whose first crop of two-year-olds were disappointing, Galileo and Dansili, for instance, and then some great first-season sires who never matched the same level of achievement again. Two-year-old racing is not only what decides a stallion’s commercial value, and of course one crop of two-year-olds is far too small a sample from which to make a definitive judgment. Over the long run any variable tends to revert towards the mean, and few stallions are able to maintain a position way ahead of their rivals year after year and season after season even with, or perhaps because of, the 150 or more foals successful commercial sires have every year. And then, of course, the market never makes definitive judgments but instead tends to swing unpredictably as the stakes are high

and the players understandably anxious. It is hard to think of any stallion whose career has been one long procession from success to success, and even the future of stallions such as Galileo and Dubawi were in question at one point – for example Galileo’s fifth crop of yearlings averaged only marginally more than his first, while Dubawi’s second crop of yearlings averaged only £50,000. A stallion’s performance and breeders’ and buyers’ perceptions of its performance are rarely if ever a straight line or a harmonious upward curve and it is always easy enough to find a negative angle about any stallion. Even Frankel, who has been spectacularly successful from the moment his progeny began to race, had many doubters since his first yearlings appeared at the sales in 2015. There is no really objective way of predicting which of this or any year’s firstseason sires will still be successful in five years’ time. There are some obvious pointers – the percentage of winners to runners, the number of winners – aside from the prize-money total which determines the official title of champion first-season sire. What has always been a murky picture has been even more obscure over the last 15 years

A stallion’s performance and breeders’ and buyers’ perceptions of its performance are rarely if ever a straight line or a harmonious upward curve with the rise in the number of mares covered by first-season sires – this year there are seven first-crop stallions who will have had 50 or more runners by the end of the year. Everybody has their own way of looking at these things and any opinions are only that, just subjective opinions. The number of Group winners in a stallion’s first crop of two-year-olds seems to be a good guide to the future. Not every sire with two or more was able to repeat the feat regularly – Fasliyev the first-season sire sensation of 2003 had four Group winners in his first crop of two-year-

European first-season sires (listed by average rating of top 20% of runners) STALLION Fee 2014

Stats by Jocelyn de Moubray

Nos mares covered Runners Winners GWnrs % rated 95+ 2015/16

Declaration Of War €40,000 0 Intello £25,000 239 Reliable Man €6,000 122 Farhh £17,500 111 Maxios €10,000 200 Pedro The Great €3,000 109 Camelot €25,000 405 Dabirsim €9,000 241 Dawn Approach €35,000 298 Epaulette €7,500 207 Society Rock €8,000 198 Cityscape £5,000 98 Havana Gold £8,500 140 Lethal Force £12,500 228 Red Jazz €4,500 107 Swiss Spirit £4,500 228 Most Improved €6,000 133 Planteur €6,000 203

38 7 1 7.9 29 8 0 6.9 2 17 2 13.0 17 4 1 12..0 31 8 0 13.0 9 24 0 8.3 67 18 1 4.5 47 14 1 6.4 43 10 0 7.1 58 19 0 1.7 72 23 1 6.9 25 6 0 4.0 62 18 1 4.9 58 20 0 6.9 20 58 0 3.4 14 41 0 4.8 13 39 0 2.6 10 27 0 3.8

Average rating top 20% rnrs 96 96 96 94 94 93 92 92 91 90 90 88 88 88 88 87 79 78

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Profile for Thoroughbred Publishing

ITB_Dec2017  

Stallion Review 2017, including Frankel, Mickley Stud, a wealth of stallion statistics and an interview with Elite Racing Club, owner-breede...

ITB_Dec2017  

Stallion Review 2017, including Frankel, Mickley Stud, a wealth of stallion statistics and an interview with Elite Racing Club, owner-breede...