£6.95 JANUARY 2023 ISSUE 221
King of the ring Coveted foals of the 2022 European sales Kingman Invincible Spirit - Zenda (Zamindar) £125,000 1st Oct Special Live Foal Contact Shane Horan, Henry Bletsoe or Claire Curry +44 (0)1638 731115 | email@example.com www.juddmonte.com 1,000,000gns Top lot at Tattersalls December Foal Sale €550,000 Top three at Gofs November Foal Sale €530,000 Top three at Gofs November Foal Sale €460,000 Top three at Gofs November Foal Sale 425,000gns Tattersalls December Foal Sale €400,000 2nd highest lot at Arqana Breeding Stock Sale
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Jumpers warm hearts as cold snap takes its toll
It was a rather chilly end to 2022 as December’s cold snap saw multiple meetings cancelled due to frozen ground. The role of the all-weather in keeping the British racing show on the road has been illustrated time and again, yet even here temperatures proved too much for some of the artificial surfaces to handle.
We all understand the need to give fixtures every opportunity to go ahead, especially at times of the year when the programme has been decimated. However, abandoning the card when the runners are already in the parade ring for the first race, or not releasing certain information on which owners and trainers base their decision to enter and run, is surely not in the best interests of British racing.
At a basic level it seems unfair on horses, participants, staff and racegoers to suggest a meeting has a greater chance of surviving the elements than is actually the case, while inaccurate descriptions regarding the state of the ground will only cause resentment – and a whole heap of non-runners.
Thankfully we saw some sublime performances on track to raise the pulse and warm the cockles of racing fans’ hearts. Constitution Hill looked awesome on his much-anticipated reappearance in the Fighting Fifth Hurdle at Newcastle, with some commentators describing him as the best they had ever seen. Over fences, Edwardstone looked the real deal when romping home in the Tingle Creek Chase at Sandown.
Constitution Hill and Edwardstone were both deserving winners at December’s ROA Horseracing Awards ( see pages 25-35 ), taking the outstanding novice hurdler and outstanding novice chaser accolades for their efforts last season. Owners Michael Buckley, Robert Abrey and Ian Thurtle were all in attendance in London as the ROA’s big night out celebrated its 40th anniversary.
The race for Horse of the Year proved hard
fought as brilliant colt Baaeed got the better of outstanding mare Alpinista by a nose, gaining the day by just a single vote. The Baaeed team – which numbered around 25 – took over the stage as his triumph was announced.
Wayne Clifford was also present to collect the National Hunt special achievement award for his evergreen chaser Coole Cody, surely one of the most popular horses in training. The subject of this month’s back page interview, Clifford was thrilled to see ROA members recognise his star, who turns 12 this month.
“Coole Cody is the sort of horse an owner dreams of – he’s been incredible. I was over the moon with his win at the ROA Horseracing Awards,” Clifford says of his Cheltenham specialist (The Finish Line, page 112).
“When he won the Racing Post Gold Cup last December I fell over in my excitement, as I’d been pacing about and then tripped over while running up the hill with him. Winning the Plate there in March was extra special as he was headed but just wouldn’t give in.
“We’ll hand pick races for him and the second he tells us he’s had enough he’ll come home for good.”
Also in this issue, trainer Chris Gordon tells Marcus Townend how hard work and the right attitude have helped improve the fortunes of his Hampshire stable, while we run the rule over the hottest stallion prospects for 2023, at home and abroad.
THE OWNER BREEDER 1
Edward Rosenthal Editor
£6.95 JANUARY 2023 ISSUE 221
Cover: Trainer Chris Gordon partners
talented hurdler Highway One O Two during morning exercise with his string at Morestead Stables in Hampshire
Photo: Bill Selwyn
Hill looked awesome in the Fighting Fifth at Newcastle”
Breeder’s Cup Juvenile Fillies (G1) Frizette Stakes (G1) Spinaway Stakes (G1)
GUNITE Hopeful Stakes (G1)
Preakness Stakes (G1)
Arkansas Derby (G1) Haskell Stakes (G1)
Pennsylvania Derby (G1) Santa Anita Derby (G1)
SOCIETY Cotillion Stakes (G1)
SIX GRADE 1 WINNERS AND A BID FOR HISTORY
IN 2022, SIRE SENSATION GUN RUNNER RANKS #1 BY:* % Gr. 1 STAKES WINNERS, % Gr. 1 STAKES HORSES, % Gr. STAKES WINNERS, % Gr. STAKES HORSES, % BLACK TYPE WINNERS, % BLACK TYPE HORSES, and Earnings/Starter *among stallions standing in North America 859.873.7053 www.threechimneys.com @ three_chimneys BREED TRUE LGB LLC 2022 as of press time
4 THE OWNER BREEDER
ahead 9 TBA Leader New funding
essential 11 News Whip rules come under fire 12 Changes News in a nutshell 16 Howard Wright Why governance structure jogs memory 22 Features The Big Picture Coral Gold Cup at Newbury 20
Awards Celebrating equine stars and their owners 25 The Big Interview With
36 New sires Baaeed
intake 42 Further afield The
2023 54 Contents January 2023 36 42 ››
News & Views ROA Leader
trainer Chris Gordon
heads this year's
overseas stallion class of
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6 THE OWNER BREEDER Did you know? Our monthly average readership is 20,000 112 25 Contents Breeders' Digest Stallion trails back in full effect 63 Sales Circuit Records continue to tumble 64 Dr Statz Demand soars for high-quality stock 84 Caulfield Files Outstrip outlasts the Darley Club 86 The Finish Line With Wayne Clifford 112 Forum ROA Forum Reviewing of handicap marks explained 88 TBA Forum Don't miss out on Elite NH Mares' Scheme 96 Breeder of the Month Little Lodge Farm for Le Milos 102 Great British Bonus Latest news and winners 103 Vet Forum Get ready to foal down 106 ››
STRADIVARIUS 2014 Sea The Stars ex Private Life (Bering) NEW FOR 2023 BREEDER BONUS England, Ireland & France PROGENY BORN IN 2024 GROUP 1 £250,000 GROUP 2 £100,000 GROUP 3 £100,000 BREEDER B O N U S + EDEERB R SUNOB + RB E E D ER BONUS + FIRST CROP GROUP WINNERS FIRST 10 two-year-old WINNERS BREEDER B O N U S + EDEERB R SUNOB + RB E E D ER BONUS + England, Ireland, France & Germany PROGENY BORN IN 2024 FIRST 10 WINNING 2YO’S £25,000 2023 FEE £10,000 Live Foal CONSISTENTLY BRILLIANT SPEED Faster than Cracksman, Anthony Van Dyck, Crystal Ocean, Tarnawa, Earthlight, Space Blues and Addeybb* SOUNDNESS Raced consistently at the highest level 18 Group wins incl 7 Group 1s - More than any other European horse SIRELINE By leading sire of sires SEA THE STARS Joe Bradley: +44 (0)7706 262046 Joe.firstname.lastname@example.org Nominations: +44 (0)1638 675929 email@example.com www.nationalstud.co.uk *Posted faster fnal sections over the last 3f, 3f, 4f and 3f respectively on the same race days. Terms & Conditions apply to Breeder Bonus.
The ROA would like to thank all our fantastic sponsors for helping make our 40th Horseracing Awards such a huge success. Your generosity and support is most greatly appreciated.
Ever yone at the ROA wishes our partners all the best for 2023.
We look forward to continuing to work with you in the future.
Charlie Parker President
Government can’t gamble with racing’s prosperity
Anew year offers fresh hope. Let’s see what 2023 has in store for British horseracing; 2022 was certainly a year to remember with some fantastic action on the track, outstanding sales results and record prize-money of over £175 million. The progress made on the new governance and structure of the BHA was a real boost for the sport and provides us with a great opportunity to build for the future.
The 40th ROA Horseracing Awards in December was a fantastic evening and a real cause for celebration, bringing together the very best of British racing. Kirsten Rausing was crowned Owner of the Year, her famous white and green silks carried so successfully in 2022 by the brilliant Alpinista. The incredible mare delivered an eight-race winning streak, securing six Group 1 wins in succession before an injury in training brought forward her retirement. Alpinista clutched two further accolades on the night in the outstanding middle-distance and outstanding filly/mare categories.
The Horse of the Year trophy went most deservedly to Baaeed, the brilliant son of Sea The Stars, who triumphed by just a single vote. Owned by Shadwell Estate Company, his formidable season yielded four Group 1 victories. Baaeed is a tremendously exciting addition to Shadwell’s stallion arm at Nunnery Stud in Newmarket. It was also wonderful to see awards go to Middleham Park Racing for The Platinum Queen and Wayne Clifford for Cheltenham specialist and crowd favourite Coole Cody.
I have lost count of the number of times over the past 12 months when I have cited that the publishing of the Gambling Act Review is just around the corner. Rumblings from Westminster now suggest that the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) is preparing for publication imminently, possibly even before Christmas, three years after the Conservative government first issued its manifesto pledge to make sure that industry regulation is suitable for the digital age.
It has been suggested that Prime Minster Rishi Sunak is keen to expedite the final stages of the process and pass both the White Paper and the Gambling Act Review as soon as possible. There remains a significant risk to the industry around affordability checks and overzealous interpretation of the new regulations by betting operators. It is still baffling to me that a Conservative government could be promoting regulations and restrictions on people’s civil liberties. When the paper finally lands, we as an industry will have to unite if we need to lobby on certain issues to protect the sport’s finances.
Record prize-money of just over £175m was provided in 2022. The early signals for 2023 suggest that whilst there is definite intent from racecourses to continue on an upward
trajectory, the challenges facing the wider economy over the coming 12 months may see progress stall. The Levy Board has confirmed its contribution will be £66 million, which is £4m less than it contributed in 2022.
The ongoing strategic review has the issue of prize-money and funding front and centre; a real revolution is needed in this area. How to grow revenues and participants’ share of the pot will be the main challenge for 2023 and beyond. The newly formed Commercial Committee has a big opportunity to help shape the future direction of the race programme to both meet the needs of the horse population and increase racing’s income stream.
On a brighter note, in December Ascot announced record prize-money of £17m across its 25 racedays in 2023, representing an annual uplift of over £1.3m against 2022 figures. Increases in executive contributions have also been announced from Fakenham racecourse and Jockey Club Racecourses. In the coming weeks we are anticipating further announcements from courses relating to greater executive contributions this year.
Whilst 2023 might prove challenging economically across British racing and wider society, we now have a governance structure that will allow us to develop and implement a strategy for the industry to unite behind and ensure that we have a sustainable future. And that gives us hope.
I wish you all a happy and prosperous New Year both on and off the racecourse.
THE OWNER BREEDER 9
“It is baffling to me that the Conservatives could be promoting restrictions on people’s civil liberties”
To book a nomination or arrange a viewing, contact Will Wright: +44 (0)7787 422901 | firstname.lastname@example.org or +44 (0)1842 756963 | email@example.com Discover the Shadwell stallions: www.shadwellstud.com Showcasing - Roodeye (Inchinor) MOHAATHER Explosive and exceptionally talented Group 1 Sussex-winning miler His quality frst foals made a strong impression in the sales ring Prices included 110,000gns, €95,000, 90,000gns, 80,000gns etc... “The natural speed & turn of foot he possessed was frightening” Marcus Tregoning, trainer Fee: £15,000 January 1st SLF 110,000gns purchased by Shadwell Lot 1222: Colt x Time Of Change €95,000 purchased by Glenvale Stud Lot 359: Colt x Shaaqaaf 80,000gns purchased by Joe Foley Lot 486: Colt x Lady Freyja 68,000gns purchased by Tally-Ho Stud Lot 1148: Filly x Muaamara
Julian Richmond-Watson Chairman
New model needed to attract future participants
As the main sales season for 2022 came to an end, culminating in the record-breaking Tattersalls December Mares auction, it was apparent that there is still strong demand for breeding stock throughout the thoroughbred world.
With this sale alone resulting in turnover of nearly 81 million guineas – up 30 per cent on 2021 and 16 per cent higher than 2007’s record return – it is easy to believe that all is fine in the breeding world. An average of 117,000gns, which represented a 48 per cent increase on the previous year, sounds healthy, but a median of 32,000gns brings some realism to what is happening at the less exalted levels.
The broodmare band and breeding stock are the lifeblood of the industry in Britain and unless we keep and maintain the quantity and in particular the quality of females needed to replenish the racing stock, we will rapidly loosen the supply chain to the point of no return. It is therefore the responsibility of all of us to encourage new breeders to join the industry and those already operating in this vital area to maintain their commitment.
The TBA’s latest Economic Impact Study into breeding, which will be presented in Newmarket in the new year, makes for sobering reading and, while its findings must remain under wraps until then, there is no harm in saying that it does not portray a picture which would automatically encourage new entrants into the industry.
We have to recognise that fact and be prepared to change the way the breeding industry is funded and operated if we wish to see a bright future for all those who would want to be part of our dream.
In preparing for change, the work that is going on in the background, particularly within the BHA’s new Commercial Committee, is going to be vital. Hopefully, it will come up with some exciting proposals for the race programme and fixture list in 2024. While the committee’s deliberations will be focused on increasing the appeal and competitiveness of our sport, its members should not forget that owners and breeders must be encouraged to support and produce the raw material which is needed to create that interest in the first place.
Removing uncompetitive races, often at the higher end, where there are inevitably fewer good horses, has its risks, notably in encouraging those horses to compete elsewhere or to be sold to race under different jurisdictions. In this respect it is worth remembering that Alcohol Free, who sold for 5.4m guineas in December, will continue her racing career in Australia before retiring to the breeding shed.
With this mind, we must therefore ensure that those good horses are running for substantially more prize-money if they are to contest these fewer but more competitive races. We cannot stop, and should not attempt to stop, the export of colts and geldings who are slightly below top class, but if they are to populate the main race programmes and big handicaps, the rewards should be commensurate with their values.
However, this is very different for fillies and mares, who, with notable exceptions, generally do not create the same interest from overseas and are needed for the local British broodmare band.
The TBA and BHA have worked hard, and with considerable success, to enhance the race programme for
older fillies, and more valuable opportunities for these horses should keep them in training for at least one more year to the benefit of the sport and field sizes. A few valuable handicaps for fillies and mares might be the low-hanging fruit that fill the gaps where horses might have been exported.
The BHA’s Commercial Committee will have many differing thoughts on how to redirect prize-money and enhance the product, but without those good Saturday horses being consistently available to the public, we will struggle to maintain the interest which everyone is working so hard to achieve.
So, my message is to be bold and look at the horses who drive interest in the sport and then make sure, as far as possible, that they keep running consistently on British racecourses.
THE OWNER BREEDER 11
“The broodmare band and breeding stock are the lifeblood of the industry in Britain”
Jockeys unhappy as new rules over whip use come into force
The four-week bedding-in period before full implementation of the new whip rules and penalties begins this month for jump jockeys, with the weighing room having broken ranks in recent weeks to voice severe reservations over the looming changes.
The nub of their concern – only heightened by recent advice from racecourse stewards as to how many bans would be accruing were the new rules in place – is the change from use of the whip for encouragement to be limited to the backhand position only.
Banning use of the whip in the forehand position, and stiffer penalties – including the threat of disqualification for the most serious breaches – were the key results of the British Horseracing Authority approving a suite of 20 recommendations from an industry-wide group, following an extensive consultation process.
The issue of public perception was certainly a factor in the outcome of the whip review, though some organisations would have wanted the sport to go further and ban the aid entirely.
PJ McDonald and Tom Scudamore were both part of the steering group, while the Professional Jockeys Association appeared on board at the time, but last month riders from the Flat and jumps were critical of the changes, particularly of the timing.
The bedding-in period over jumps begins on January 9, with the new rules
and penalties kicking in on February 6 – five weeks before the start of the Cheltenham Festival – while on the Flat the practice period is from February 27, with full implementation from March 27.
Harry Cobden has called the changes “bloody ridiculous”, while on ITV Racing Nico de Bonville and Harry Skelton – said to be the author of a letter outlining concerns sent to the BHA signed by 30 jockeys – were others to speak out.
“It is quite terrifying how many bans we will be picking up if we carry on down this road,” said de Boinville. “There won’t be any jockeys riding in the end because the bans will go up and up and up.
“We will be hitting in the wrong place, which from a welfare point of view is the worst possible scenario. We just think it’s been badly thought out and the worst thing is it’s badly timed as well.”
Skelton added: “A lot of jockeys have been trying to abide by the new rules. It is alarming the amount of bans that will be in place. Some jockeys prefer to use it in the forehand because they feel they can connect with the horse in the right place.
“When the ProCush foam-padded whip is used correctly there is no welfare issue at all. It’s a stimulation aid and is there for correction and encouragement.”
On the subject of individual riders
leaving it fairly late in the day to go public with their opinions, De Boinville said: “For a long time we’ve been very quiet in there and we’ve allowed people to speak for us. It’s come to the time where we are ready to speak up and have our voices heard.”
In response, a BHA spokesperson said: “The BHA undertook extensive technical discussions following the publication of the recommendations earlier this year by the steering group, which itself included two leading current jockeys.
“Those full and frank discussions were held with representatives of all interested parties and the feedback provided was listened to and considered carefully. Ultimately, what has been agreed upon is a package of measures designed to develop a more considered and judicious use of the whip for encouragement, improving the style and perception of its use.
“We recognise the importance of working with jockeys, which is why we have engaged with them and their representatives to make sure they understand the changes being brought in through communication and education.
“We will be happy to continue with such engagement prior to the implementation of the new rules and penalties, and throughout the respective bedding-in periods for both codes.”
12 THE OWNER BREEDER
The new rules will come into effect before the Cheltenham Festival in March
Stories from the racing world
Death of Peter Hedger
Peter Hedger, the former jockey and successful trainer whose career spanned eight decades, died last month following a long illness. He was 82.
His riding career began on the Flat as an apprentice before he switched to the jumps and partnered 16 winners. His time in the saddle came to a premature end, however, when he suffered a broken neck in a fall at Kempton in 1965.
Hedger became a horsebox driver and took many of trainer John Dunlop’s best horses to the races.
It was Dunlop who encouraged him to take out a permit and Hedger sent out his first winner from his yard near Chichester, West Sussex, when Indigo landed a selling hurdle at Taunton in 1981.
Hedger took out a full licence four years later and gained his biggest victory when Al Asoof, ridden by Mark Richards, beat Champion Hurdle winner Beech Road in the National Spirit Hurdle at Fontwell, his local track, in 1991.
Elsewhere over jumps, Kilcash was second in the Ladbroke for the
dual-purpose trainer and Jimmy Lorenzo won valuable handicap hurdles at Ascot and Kempton before being sold to the United States, where he won the Breeders’ Cup Chase.
Hedger was at least as well known on the Flat, if not more so, and among his principal winners under that code were Autumn Cover, who landed the 1997 Great Jubilee Handicap at Kempton, Brilliant Red (1998 Courage Handicap, Newbury), Veronica Franco (1998 Newbury Autumn Cup) and Continuum (2014 John Smith’s Silver Cup, York)
That last win came after Hedger temporarily gave up training in 2006. He moved to France and his intention had apparently been to set up over there, but he later joked: “It was a possibility that I might train but the French language course was a big problem – I struggle with English at times!”
He got going again in Hampshire in 2009, at a yard belonging to major supporter John Whelan, who owned
Kilcash, Veronica Franco and Continuum. He retired for good in 2020 but was still involved as he became assistant to Simon Hodgson, who took over the yard. He was still schooling horses aged 77 and rode out until he was 78.
Hedger is survived by his second wife Laura and two daughters.
Chris Wall calls time on training career
Group 1-winning trainer Chris Wall will not be renewing his licence due to the dwindling number of horses at his Newmarket yard.
Wall, who turns 64 this month, was assistant trainer to Sir Mark Prescott and Luca Cumani, and saddled the first of well over 750 winners when Romantic Prince scored at Haydock in 1987.
His first big-race winner was Rotherfield Greys in the 1988 Stewards’ Cup and his first and only Classic winner was to come early in his career when Candy Glen won the 1990 Premio Parioli, Italy’s 2,000 Guineas. Wall’s other top-level triumph was with Donna Viola in the Yellow Ribbon Stakes at Santa Anita in 1996.
Donna Viola also added a Group 2 win closer to home in the 1996 Prix de l’Opera, while Missed Flight won at the same level in the 1994 Prix du RondPoint and 1995 Sandown Mile, Premio Loco is perhaps the horse Wall is most associated with – the Prized gelding won at Group 2 level for
four consecutive years, taking the Oettingen-Rennen and Grosse Europa Meile in 2009, Summer Mile in 2010, Park Stakes in 2011 and the 2012 Celebration Mile as an eight-year-old.
That all preceded his best year numerically, which came in 2014 with 37 winners, but recent seasons have been leaner. He said: “I’m stopping training rather than retiring. I’m hoping
I can find something to do to keep the wolf from the door.
“Our numbers have just dwindled to the point of where it didn’t make sense any more to carry on.
“We had 30 this year, which would have been fine if we could have maintained that level of numbers –we’d have carried on. But we were down to having numbers in the teens and it just doesn’t work at that level.”
Wall added: “We’ve done well, I’ve had a good career and had great support from our owners. We’ve had good relationships with various jockeys, who have been helpful at various times. I’ve always thought we’ve punched above our weight for a yard that had between 40 and 50 horses, which sounds a lot but in the modern era it is very few.
“I don’t know what I’ll do. It’s going to take a little while to get the business unwound and a line drawn under things, so it will probably be in the new year we’ll get that finished off and then will see what’s out there.”
THE OWNER BREEDER 13
Peter Hedger: talented trainer
A decline in stable numbers has seen Chris Wall relinquish his licence
Stallion supreme Kayf Tara dies
Kayf Tara, one of the great stalwarts of the British jumps breeding industry of recent times, died last month at the grand age of 28. The son of Sadler’s Wells, a treble champion stayer for Godolphin who won two renewals of both the Gold Cup at Ascot and Irish St Leger, had been living in retirement at Overbury Stud in Gloucestershire, his home for the past 22 years.
An 11-time champion British jumps sire, he had been represented on the big stage just days earlier by the victory of Robert Abrey and Ian Thurtle’s homebred Edwardstone in the Tingle Creek Chase at Sandown. Also successful in last season’s Arkle Trophy at the Cheltenham Festival, Edwardstone sits on a list of top jumpers for Kayf Tara also highlighted by the King George VI Chase and World Hurdle winner Thistlecrack, Irish Gold Cup winner Edwulf, top two-mile chaser
Special Tiara and Hennessy Gold Cup hero Carruthers.
Simon Sweeting paid tribute to Kayf Tara, who was the first stallion to retire to Overbury Stud under his tenure as manager. He said: “Kayf Tara really put us on the map. I feel incredibly fortunate to have been with him through every step of what transpired to be an extraordinary career as a jump stallion, in which he won more championships than any other British National Hunt sire in history.
“I remain immensely grateful to Sheikh Mohammed and the Darley team for entrusting him to us. He’s been such a great servant to the National Hunt game and to Overbury Stud, where he was looked after for most of his time by Dan Matty. We will miss him terribly.”
Sam Bullard, Darley’s Director of Stallions, added: “We are all very grateful to Simon Sweeting and his
team at Overbury for taking such great care of Kayf Tara for all these years, and we are very proud of the enormous contribution he has made to National Hunt racing and breeding in Britain and beyond during that time.”
Discovery of genes linked to successful racehorses
An international research team has identified a critical set of genes linked to successful racehorses.
By comparing the genomes of Thoroughbred, Arabian and Mongolian racehorses with horses bred for other sports and leisure, scientists were able to locate a set of genes that play a significant role in muscle, metabolism and neurobiology.
These genes were found to be different in racing breeds and were common to all racing breeds compared to those horses from non-racing breeds.
“Since the discovery of the ‘Speed Gene’ in 2009, we have generated genetic data for thousands of Thoroughbreds and horses from other breeds,” said Professor Emmeline Hill, lead scientist on the project and Chief Science Officer at Plusvital, who worked in collaboration with colleagues from Asia, Europe and North America.
“This is the first time this set of genes has been linked to the success of racing breeds. Two of the genes were previously identified for performance in Thoroughbreds and Arabians, but the approach we took was to ask what genes were common to all racing breeds and different from non-racing breeds.
Dr Emmeline Hill: lead scientist
“The large number of horse breeds developed over the last hundreds of years all over the world have been carefully shaped by selective breeding for different traits desired by breeders. This has led to tall horses, small horses, powerful draft horses, useful riding horses, and fast racing horses.
“We have discovered a set of genes common to racing horses, but not all horses within a racing breed have the advantageous gene version, so these findings will be useful to identify the most suitable individuals within a breed
for racing or breeding.”
Co-author Professor David MacHugh of University College Dublin commented: “Although racing is a multifactorial trait, with management and training having a considerable influence on the success of a racehorse, this study provides good evidence for major-effect genes shaping the racing trait in horse populations.”
The research, published in Communications Biology, included the collection of hair samples from 100 horses owned by the champion Ajnai Sharga Horse Racing Team at their breeding farm in Mongolia.
Using the DNA from these Mongolian racing horses, along with Thoroughbred and racing Arabian horses, the scientists compared the genomes of these breeds with 21 other non-racing breeds, such as Clydesdale, Connemara pony, Hanoverian, Morgan, Norwegian Fjord, Paint, Shetland and Shire, and identified seven essential genes for racing.
Among the top genes was NTM, which functions in brain development and influences learning and memory. This gene was selected during the horse domestication process, and in Thoroughbred racehorses influences whether a horse ever races.
14 THE OWNER BREEDER
Kayf Tara: outstanding sire
STALLIONS 2023 LOPE Y FERNANDEZ 2017 Lope De Vega ex Black Dahlia (Dansili) | £8,500 1st Oct SLF European Champion 3yo Sprinter Exceptional fertility in his frst season RAJASINGHE 2015 Choisir ex Bunditten (Soviet Star) | £3,000 1st Oct SLF 70% winners to runners with his frst crop By the same sire as proven Group 1 producer STARSPANGLEDBANNER STRADIVARIUS 2014 Sea The Stars ex Private Life (Bering) | £10,000 Live Foal 7 time Group 1 winner By leading sire of sires SEA THE STARS TIME TEST LOPE Y FERNANDEZ By leading CLASSIC SIRE LOPE DE VEGA
People and business
Racing’s news in a nutshell
Randox Grand National
Jockey who was champion apprentice in 2021 receives a six-month ban having tested positive for cocaine in August.
Danny Brock Jockey is absent from disciplinary hearing at which he is alleged to have broken four rules relating to corruption in racing.
Bryony Frost 27-year-old breaks collarbone following a fall at Bangor but is hoping to be back in action for Kempton’s Christmas meeting.
Neil Hayward Appointed as first Chair of the newlycreated Industry People Board, tasked with assisting recruitment and training of the sport’s workforce.
Relinquishes his licence in Hong Kong, where he has been champion jockey four times, ahead of his retirement aged 39 owing to a hip injury.
Prize-money for 2023 will hit a record £17 million across 25 racedays (excluding British Champions Day), an increase of £1.33m on 2022.
Peter Thomas scoops the Racing Writer of the Year trophy while Nick Luck doubles up as leading broadcaster and reporter at the HWPA bash.
Named Bloodstock Agent of the Year having purchased Derby hero Desert Crown and Commonwealth Cup victor Perfect Power.
Ronan McNally Trainer found at least partially in breach of ten of 11 rule infringements by a referrals committee of the Irish Horseracing Regulatory Board.
Racing broadcaster and Timeform analyst is appointed Handicapping Ombudsman to oversee handicap rating appeals.
Bangor’s General Manager leaves the role after 19 years, succeeded by Paddy Chesters, but will continue at the track in a liaison capacity.
MP for West Suffolk, whose constituency includes Newmarket, announces that he will stand down at the next general election.
John Hanmer 82
Commentator for BBC racing who would famously take over the Grand National coverage as the runners crossed the Melling Road.
Jed Cohen 89
California-based owner whose best horses included Yellow Ribbon Stakes heroine Janet and Frank E. Kilroe Mile victor River Boyne.
Frank Dunne 79
Irish retail magnate was a successful owner, breeder and trainer, sending out top-class mare Stanerra to win the 1983 Japan Cup.
Hugo Bevan 86
Clerk of the Course at Towcester, Windsor, Warwick, Worcester and Huntingdon who later turned to art and also assisted the IJF.
Peter Hedger 82
Former jockey and horsebox driver enjoyed plenty of success under both codes as a trainer and was still riding out into his late 70s.
David Hockenhull 89
Established Shade Oak Stud in Shropshire, standing champion British jumps sires Gunner B and Alflora, and now home to Logician.
16 THE OWNER BREEDER
Reserves system for the Aintree highlight, introduced in 2000, is scrapped due to issues around the supply of raceday data globally.
Racehorse and stallion Movements and retirements
Frankel’s Group 2-winning son moves to Haras du Petit Tellier after two seasons at Haras de Saint Arnoult. His fee remains at €5,000.
July Stakes winner, also placed in three Group 1s, is retired after his two-year-old season to stand alongside his sire Mehmas at Tally-Ho Stud.
Speedy son of Mehmas, winner of the Flying Childers Stakes, is retired and will take up stallion duties at Overbury Stud. His fee is £6,500.
Group 2-winning son of Camelot will stand his first season at Karwin Stud in Normandy for a fee of €2,800.
Son of Scat Daddy, leading Frenchbased first-season sire by number of winners in 2022, moves from Haras de Saint Arnoult to Haras du Taillis.
Deep Impact’s son will reverse shuttle from Australia to Lemongrove Stud in County Westmeath under the Zenith Stallion Station banner.
Son of Galileo whose first runners hit the track in 2022 moves from Castle Hyde Stud to Haras d’Annebault. His fee is set at €3,500.
Daughter of Galileo, winner of the Oaks and Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf for Aidan O’Brien and Coolmore, is retired aged three.
Monty’s Pass 29
Wide-margin winner of the 2003 Grand National under Barry Geraghty for the County Cork stable of Jimmy Mangan.
Ouija Board 21
Lord Derby’s dual Oaks heroine won seven Group 1s in total and is also the dam of Derby hero and leading Coolmore sire Australia.
Kayf Tara 28
Godolphin’s dual Gold Cup hero, he went on to become Britain’s leading National Hunt sire from his base at Overbury Stud.
Grade 1-winning hurdler for owner Olly Harris and trainer Gary Moore suffers a fatal fall on his reappearance at Newbury.
18 THE OWNER BREEDER
THE BREEDERS’ CUP WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS
NOVEMBER 3 & 4, 2023
Created by racing visionaries in the 80’s, this year-end event has established itself as thoroughbred racing’s greatest achievement. The Breeders’ Cup World Championships brings the best of the best to compete on racing’s biggest stage. Held each fall and hosted by the premier racetracks in North America, this two-day extravaganza crowns Champions in every division and is truly a race fan’s dream come true.
The 2023 Breeders’ Cup World Championships will be hosted by Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, CA. The world’s best will compete in 14 Championship races on November 3 & 4 for $31 million in purses and awards.
Participants in the Breeders’ Cup World Championships are treated to an amazing weekend flled with world class hospitality, entertainment, and equally incredible racing. To fnd out how you can participate on racing’s greatest days, please call Dora Delgado, Chief Racing Offcer, +1 859-514-9422 or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Pre-entry deadline for all Championship races – Noon, Monday, Oct. 23, 2023.
All international shippers receive $40,000 in travel awards.
THE BREEDERS’ CUP CHALLENGE WIN & YOU’RE IN PROGRAM
This Win and You’re In global stakes program features graded and group stakes in 11 countries. All North American starters stabled outside of California will receive a travel award of $10,000 upon starting in any Breeders’ Cup World Championship race, international starters will receive a $40,000 allowance. Every winner of all Win & You’re In Challenge Races receives free entry fees and an automatic selection to the Championships. You can’t win if you’re not in! For the complete Challenge schedule, please visit members. breederscup.com.
THE BREEDERS’ CUP INTERNATIONAL STALLION PROGRAM
All stallions around the world are now eligible to participate directly in the Breeders’ Cup program. Stallions standing in the Northern Hemisphere outside of North America contribute 50% of their stud fee and the resulting foals are all automatically eligible to the racing programs of the Breeders’ Cup without any further nomination payments due. These automatically nominated foals are eligible for the Breeders’ Cup Challenge program as well as the Breeders’ Cup World Championships.
WITH SUCCESS BEGINS
THE BREEDERS’ CUP
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The Big Picture
Milos just magic
It may have a new name – the Coral Gold Cup – but Newbury’s signature jumps race remains one of the keenest-fought contests of the season, and this renewal was no different. Connections of the Dan Skelton-trained Le Milos were thrilled with the gelding, ridden by the trainer’s brother Harry to see off David Pipe duo Remastered (left) and Gericault Roque.
Photos Bill Selwyn
Big guns always jockey for position at the top table
Stick around long enough and the wheel usually comes full circle. The people at the hub might change but the intended direction of travel often stays the same. Take the new BHA governance structure, for example.
Looking for a separate memory-jogger from December 1977, I stumbled across a newspaper story headed “Racing’s big guns rumbling”. Oh yes, I thought, and who might these big guns be? The opening paragraph supplied the answer: “A major difference of opinion between racing’s two overlords, the Jockey Club and Levy Board, emerged yesterday when a plan for a new authority to administer all aspects of the sport was revealed.”
The Jockey Club had published a blueprint for a body to combine the powers and functions of it and the Levy Board, but within a few hours of publication the latter’s Chairman Sir Desmond Plummer had called the idea “a non-runner,” on the basis that it ran counter to the original premise enshrined in 1961 legislation that potential beneficiaries should not be represented on the statutory authority.
The new body, responsible to the Home Secretary, would comprise ten members: three government appointees (a chairman, one independent having “specific responsibility to represent the views of those who make their living within the industry,” and another who would chair the fledgling Racing Industry Liaison Committee), two appointed by the Jockey Club, one each from the ROA, RCA and TBA, and two exofficio members representing the Tote and bookmakers.
1977, a year when racing was also seeking internal change
Forty-five years on and some of those conditions are startlingly similar to today’s, not least that the amalgamation scheme was part of the Jockey Club’s submission to the Lord Rothschild-chaired Royal Commission on gambling, which started work in February 1976, had set no date for publication at the time of the article and finally reported in July 1978. The current government gambling review has been conducted at a gallop by comparison.
Four and a half decades down the line, one question has bubbled away unanswered: who runs British racing? Another
Tracks buck trend as other sports flounder
Another year, another opportunity to marvel at the remarkable resilience of Britain’s racecourses. Despite dire warnings, made no more comfortable during the Covid-19 pandemic, and misgivings aired by uninformed observers, their numbers have fallen by just two – Folkestone in December 2012 and Towcester in 2019 – since Stockton closed in 1981.
There have been one or two gaps. Hereford was dark between December 2012 and October 2016, while the ill-fated Great Leighs venture, which lasted from April 2008 until the appearance of administrators closed down the operation in January the following year, was resurrected as Chelmsford City in January 2015.
Other subtle changes have taken place, such as alterations of codes. Jumping no longer takes place at Nottingham, while Flat racing has been ditched at Warwick and Worcester, and Wetherby has taken on the Flat. All along, though, the doors have remained open on an annual allocation of fixtures that makes little differentiation between big and small.
Compare that with the number of professional Football League clubs, mainly among the lower divisions, which have sunk fathoms deep this century, and the two most recent rugby union casualties, Wasps and Worcester Warriors.
Wasps, whose demise was linked to the demands of a bond issued, ironically perhaps in relation to this discussion, during the time when current RCA Chief Executive David Armstrong was Chief Executive, and Worcester were not lower-division clubs.
They were members of the elite Premiership Rugby, about which Sunday Times correspondent Stuart Barnes has warned: “Too many clubs are dangerously dependent on owners whose unquestionable commitment over the years has kept the professional game afloat. What we are witnessing may only be the beginning of the collapse.”
While Wasps’ future continues to be tied to the whims of the mercurial Mike Ashley, Worcester’s plight is particularly relevant to racing, since the city’s racetrack would probably be near the top of any list for potential closure if fans, followers and professionals with no knowledge of running a sporting business were surveyed. Its riverside location makes it perpetually susceptible to takeover by the local rowing club but, despite the existence of a masterplan to relocate to higher ground, here it is and here it will stay as a summer jumping course.
Arena Racing Company, Worcester’s owner, gave up on Folkestone when the local council slumbered over a grand-scale development plan that still seems to be on the drawing board, but otherwise the group has been innovative guardians, whatever individual grumbles may be thrown at its performance. Hereford is back in full swing; Newcastle has an exemplary synthetic track, and new surfaces have invigorated Wolverhampton and Southwell.
Taking these examples with the rest of the racecourse portfolio, variety is indeed the spice of British racing’s life. Long may it continue to buck other sporting trends.
The Howard Wright Column
22 THE OWNER BREEDER
Dunfermline and Willie Carson were dual Classic winners in
16 years elapsed before the Jockey Club, under Senior Steward then-Lord Hartington, surrendered its governance rights to a new body, the British Horseracing Board, but while the latter has since morphed into the British Horseracing Authority, the Levy Board soldiers on, browbeaten but unbowed as myriad attempts to close it down have faltered on the grounds that no alternative with any prospect of success has been identified.
At last, though, it seems the latest negotiations to produce a workable BHA, one without a members’ committee that floundered under a power of veto, have provided the answer to the imponderable: the BHA runs British racing. BHA Chair Julie Harrington said so on the day the news was released: “This new structure clarifies the BHA’s role as the sport’s governing body and regulator.” So, it must be true.
Looking back to 1977 and forwards to today, another common theme emerges in the apparently desperate desire to let every side of British racing have a say in decision making. The ten-strong BHA Board might be in charge, but it will now take 13 people – lucky for some – on the Commercial Committee, including nine chief executives, as well as five on the Integrity Advisory Committee and at least five on a third new body, the Industry Programme Group, to feed the ball into the feet of the striker, to borrow and mangle a World Cup analogy.
Yet still there is frustration. A common cry, especially on social media, was: Where is the place for the punter? As those already guaranteed a seat round one or more of the top tables squirmed to point out that all views would be taken into account, here came another full-circle example, as the BHA-inspired Horserace Bettors Forum attempts to make a deeper impression than its last-century equivalent the National Association for the Protection of Punters.
As fans, punters comprise a vital cross-section of support for racing, but collectively their portfolio of interests, from 5p Lucky 15s to ten-grand monsters, means they risk being ranged alongside, say, the Manchester United Supporters Trust, which recently demanded a stake for its members in any new ownership structure at Old Trafford, overlooking the commercial illogic of such a request, and sought government intervention “to prevent another Glazer”, oblivious to the fact the owners had done nothing illegal but were just no good at running a football club.
Punters with a specific grumble are no different than any other consumer. Their beef should be against the retailer or trader with which they do business. Any other observations, such as those about the racing programme, carry no more collective weight than the opinion of the next man or woman.
Indeed, the punters’ collective view in this respect is best expressed by bookmakers, who have all the information about participation – what works, what doesn’t, what attracts support, what doesn’t – at their fingertips. If anyone should be directly represented on at least one of the new BHA bodies, it’s the bookmakers. But that’s another gripe with a long history.
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THE OWNER BREEDER 23
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“The desire to let every side of British racing have a say in decision making is another common theme”
The Jockey Club
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Club “Owner of the Year” Kirsten Rausing
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of the Year”
40TH ANNIVERSARY OF VICTORIES, DREAMS & CELEBRATIONS
HORSERACING AWARDS 2022
AWARDS PHOTOS BY DAN ABRAHAM
OUTSTANDING NOVICE CHASER
A PLUS TARD
40TH ANNIVERSARY OF VICTORIES, DREAMS & CELEBRATIONS 26 THE
by Richard Thompson
Presented by David Thorpe Sponsored by ARC
by Robert Abrey and Ian Thurtle
Owned by Cheveley Park Stud
by Robert and Jane Abrey and Ian and Janette Thurtle
Presented by David Thorpe Sponsored by ARC
HORSERACING AWARDS 2022 THE OWNER BREEDER 27 Received by Michael Buckley Presented by David Leyden Dunbar Sponsored by ARC CONSTITUTION HILL Owned by Michael Buckley OUTSTANDING NOVICE HURDLER HONEYSUCKLE Owned by Kenneth Alexander Received by Peter Molony Presented by David Leyden Dunbar Sponsored by ARC OUTSTANDING HURDLER OUTSTANDING NATIONAL HUNT MARE
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40TH ANNIVERSARY OF VICTORIES, DREAMS & CELEBRATIONS 28 THE OWNER BREEDER
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COOLE CODY Owned by Wayne Clifford NATIONAL HUNT SPECIAL ACHIEVEMENT
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by Keith Ottesen Sponsored by Large Independent Racecourses
HORSERACING AWARDS 2022
THE PLATINUM QUEEN
FLAT SPECIAL ACHIEVEMENT SUMMERGHAND
by Middleham Park Racing XV
Received by Tim Palin, Tom Palin and Michael Prince Presented by Anthea Leigh Sponsored by Large Independent Racecourses
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THE OWNER BREEDER 29
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40TH ANNIVERSARY OF VICTORIES, DREAMS & CELEBRATIONS 30 THE OWNER BREEDER
ALENQUER Owned by MM Stables
Owned by Kirsten Rausing
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Presented by William Derby Sponsored by Large Independent Racecourses OUTSTANDING
Presented by Sam Cone Sponsored by ARC
AWARDS 2022 THE OWNER BREEDER 31
Large Independent Racecourses KYPRIOS Owned by Moyglare, Magnier, Tabor, Smith, Westerberg OUTSTANDING STAYER
Sponsored by Large Independent Racecourses BAAEED Owned by Shadwell Estate Company Ltd OUTSTANDING MILER
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by Ed Arkell
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by Bryan Burrough
HORSE OF THE YEAR BAAEED
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HORSERACING AWARDS 2022 32 THE OWNER BREEDER
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Owned by Shadwell Estate Company Ltd
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34 THE OWNER
Kathy and Brian Finch Michael O’Hagan and Holly Roeder
Serena and Nico de Boinville
Dianne and Simon Mockridge
Rebecca Bowtell and Simon Clare
Andrew and Anna Lisa Balding
PHOTOS BY DAN ABRAHAM
HORSERACING AWARDS 2022
Janice and Chris Wright Sir AP McCoy and Gemma Waterhouse
Nick Luck and Hayley Moore
Richie McLernon and Aidan Coleman
Lucinda and John Ferguson
Bill Barber and John Cobb
Photos by Dan Abraham
The Big Interview
No flash GORDON
There is a slightly surprising answer when you ask Chris Gordon to nominate the winners that have meant the most to him.
It’s not either of his most prestigious wins in Kempton’s Grade 2 Dovecote Novices’ Hurdle with Highway One O Two in 2020 or Aucunrisque last season, nor any of his successes at Cheltenham, where Annual Invictus and Unanswered Prayers both won at this season’s November meeting.
The two he nominates came recently in modest steeplechases at Lingfield. Both carried huge personal significance because they sported the colours of long-standing supporters who helped build the foundations that are now allowing Gordon’s operation to thrive.
Les Gilbert, owner of Coolvalla, who won a Class 5 chase on November 24, was the first new patron Gordon attracted when he moved into Morestead Farm Stables near Winchester shortly after previous occupant Brendan Powell swapped Hampshire for Lambourn.
Ramore Will’s win in another Class 5 contest came in the colours of John and Annie Farrant, the couple who gave Gordon a foothold in racing as a raw teenager in 1986.
Making the latter moment even more special was the fact that Gordon’s 17-year-old amateur jockey son Freddie was in the saddle. It was a full circle moment.
Gordon says: “John became a father figure to me and has been with me all the way through. If it wasn’t for him
and Annie I certainly wouldn’t have been here. They got me out of a lot of scrapes in life. Freddie riding Ramore Will made it quite an emotional day.
“Coolvalla’s win for Les was also very sweet. They are both hardcore owners who have been with me all the way. Keeping the business going can seem quite a battle at times.”
The numbers would suggest Gordon is winning both the battle and the war.
When he and wife Jenny moved to Morestead Farm Stables in December 2007, they had only four horses to run under Rules plus “a few promises” and around 16 of the point-to-pointers which had helped to establish the Gordons’ reputation when based in East Sussex.
Now there are 60 racehorses, four pointers and Gordon is in the process of building another six stables. There is also quality looking over the stable doors, the trainer having recently spent over £100,000 – twice – on a horse for the first time.
But Gordon’s dreams of where he might ultimately end up are held in check by realism, shaped by the journey he and wife Jenny have travelled.
“It was incredibly tough,” Gordon explains. “You had to succeed to make it pay but I would like to think what we have done could inspire other people to think they can too.
“Me and Jen basically came here with bugger all, apart from hopefully a good reputation for dealing with horses.
“We both rode out six a day because ››
36 THE OWNER BREEDER
Chris Gordon started out with four horses under Rules and had to borrow a tenner to go racing –the trainer and wife Jenny have come a long way through graft, determination and no little talent
Words: Marcus Townend • Photos: Bill
Chris and Jenny Gordon have worked hard for the success they are currently enjoying
we needed to and in those first few years I would have to say to Jen, ‘Please can I have a tenner to go racing in case I have to buy a drink.’ People wouldn’t believe that side of it.”
When Chris and Jenny met on the Sussex point-to-point circuit, chickens were as important to him as horses.
“John Farrant was editor of Poultry World and Poultry Weekly. He had 24,000 battery hens. I ended up being his farm manager,” Gordon recalls. “We trained the point-to-pointers on the side at Robertsbridge, which is how I got around to being an amateur jockey. Back then, you couldn’t work in racing or a point-to-point yard.
“I had been bitten by the racing bug during work experience stints with Josh Gifford while I was at school. I wasn’t good enough to be a professional by a
long way, but I rode until I was 39 and had around 150 winners, with about five of those under Rules.”
At the same time Jenny worked
wife Penny, riding 50 point-to-point winners.
When Jeffrey retired, Jenny got a job training point-to-pointers for Simon Tindall, whose blue colours with yellow sleeves have been a familiar sight on British tracks, and Chris started to work with the woman who he would marry.
For seven years that was their working life until taking the plunge to move to Morestead Farm, borrowing £40,000 to get the business off the ground.
for East Sussex-based Jeffrey Peate – grandfather of Jonny Peate, who is currently making waves as an apprentice jockey on the Flat – and his
After six years renting the property, they bought the house and stables in 2013 and secured a 35-year lease on the gallops, which Gordon says “will see me out”.
Consistent progress since saw 43 winners secured last season, a bestever return which looks likely to be
38 THE OWNER BREEDER
The Big Interview
“One of the first things I wanted to do was target a track”
bettered this campaign given the strike-rate the Gordon stable had been operating at up until Christmas.
A massive tool in the Gordon armoury in the early days when money was tight was a lesson learned from another of his big influences, Ann Blaker.
Gordon explains: “I rode for Ann and she was a great inspiration to me and taught me more about horses than most. She produced drag horses, hunt horses, show horses and point-topointers, all at the top level.
“I was in my early 20s when one day she pulled a horse out and said, ‘Now young man, you think you know so much about horses, tell me about this one’. I didn’t have a clue what she was talking about.
“But she said, ‘Tell me about his
head, his neck, his body’. Whenever a new horse turned up, she would make me go through its conformation. She was a top show judge in her day and after a couple of years she told me I should do some judging.
“It was the last thing I wanted to do but she persuaded me – and I started as a probationary judge. I have now done the Horse of the Year Show and really enjoy it when I can do it.
“This has all stood me in such good stead because when we first came here I had to buy cheap horses, yet they all had the correct conformation. They might have been as common as muck on pedigree, but they could run a lot. That was so important in those early years. It probably made it look like I had more horses than I did!
“One of the first things I wanted to do was target a track so at least I could be good at it. I chose Fontwell, so we headed there often and became leading trainer with less than 30 horses.”
Recognising it is easy to become labelled, Gordon’s desire to spread his horizons and train a better stamp of horse was fuelled when he started to tap into second-hand horses bought from the stable of 13-time champion trainer Paul Nicholls.
That included £7,000 buy Lightentertainment, whose five wins for Gordon included one at Cheltenham, and most successfully £8,000 purchase ››
THE OWNER BREEDER 39
Chris Gordon’s string at exercise on the gallops at Morestead Stables in Hampshire; below, the trainer puts easy Ascot handicap hurdle winner Highway One O Two through his paces
The Big Interview
Remiluc, who also had a Cheltenham success among his four victories for the Gordon stable as well as a runner-up finish in the County Hurdle at the 2018 Cheltenham Festival.
Gordon says: “I hit it off with Paul and bought some wonderful horses from him quite cheaply that didn’t quite fit into a big yard but thrived in ours.
“They’d originally cost quite a bit of money and you could see that in their conformation and quality.”
Gordon’s work as a judge at the Horse of the Year Show with Henrietta Knight and the friendship that has blossomed also helped, with Knight introducing Gordon to the respected Costello family, who sold her threetime Cheltenham Gold Cup winner Best Mate, and the equally respected Doyles.
Those two Irish academies for equine talent are now where Gordon prefers to search for his future recruits.
He adds: “We were lucky because Richard Cheshire joined us as an owner about six years ago. It was the first time I have been able to turn up with a bit of money to spend and Henrietta took me to meet the Costellos.
‘We bought Commanche Red and Baddersley Knight, who turned out to be good, and cemented that relationship. I have a good relationship with the Doyles as well. Most of my horses come from them both.
“I buy everything. There is no agent who steps in. If I fail it will be by my own sword.
“When we came here initially, we were buying horses for £800, £1,000 or £1,500 and it was hard work. Up to five years ago the average price of a horse in the yard was £8,000. I was riding point-to-pointers which cost more than that! The average now is around £35,000.”
Gordon admits that running on
racing’s relentless treadmill made it impossible to take objective stock of the progress his stable had made. Ironically, that only happened during the shutdown of racing caused by the Covid pandemic. “It gave me time to reflect and think we had done alright,” Gordon says.
The one thing he didn’t need reminding about was the part Jenny, whom he first met at a young farmers’ disco when they were teenagers, plays in the operation.
Her alarm can go off as early as 3.30am and, while Chris is the public face of the operation on the track, Jenny is the cog the home operation revolves around. She also trains the stable point-to-pointers with great success. Last season they were ridden by Freddie, who is now based with Nicholls, but this season it will be another member of the Gordon team,
Her father Guy won the 1987 Whitbread Gold Cup on Lean Ar Aghaidh, while her mother Emma Coveney was Jenny’s big rival during their point-to-point riding days.
Jenny says: “It worked very well last year. I was the top trainer with under seven horses and Freddie was second in the novice championship, so I could tell Chris I was a champion!
“It was quite nice to have a bit of recognition in my own right, but he is the boss. Someone has to make the decisions. We would never have a joint licence but that doesn’t bother me.
“I don’t think anyone gave us any more than six months when we set up, but we work well together and see pretty much everything in the same way.”
That’s a way that is proving very fruitful for Chris and Jenny Gordon.
‘I think summer jumping is as dull as dishwater’
Racing has some significant decisions to make as it considers how it could be restructured to become more prosperous and attractive to its audience.
High on that agenda is the future of summer jump racing. While not wanting it scrapped, Chris Gordon would like to see the return to a break from jump racing of six to eight weeks during the middle months of the year.
He says: “I think it is souring racing. I have loved racing all my life,
but it turns me off completely. Quite often these days, if we are not doing anything during the summer, in the afternoon I quite often would not have the racing on the television.
“I think summer jumping is as dull as dishwater and I think it is extremely hard on horses.
“I used to look forward to jumping starting when we used to have two months off. You could see everyone was enthusiastic for it. It would be fantastic if we could go back to that.
“Some trainers no doubt feel it
is a way of keeping their businesses running but if people need horses in at that time of year for their business, they should get a few dual-purpose horses. We would certainly like a few more Flat horses to train.
“That would also boost the Flat –increasing the numbers of runners at tracks like Bath and Chepstow – and then when the National Hunt season started again those horses could go back jumping. It is not as if the yard is empty. You can do breakers and pre-trainers.”
40 THE OWNER BREEDER
Chris Gordon with owner Richard Cheshire
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Sea The Stars - Aghareed (Kingmambo)
Standing: Nunnery Stud
Over the course of 11 races the Shadwell homebred revealed himself to be a truly exceptional racehorse, winning ten times and six Group 1s across two sensational seasons. Unraced at two, the William Haggas-trained talent quickly made up for lost time as he rattled through bloodless victories at Leicester, Newmarket (twice) and Goodwood, the latter effort a six-anda-half length romp in the Thoroughbred Stakes.
He was upped to Group 1 company on just his fifth outing and duly landed the Prix du Moulin from the battle-hardened Order Of Australia. His three-year-old
campaign ended with a sixth straight success in the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes, in which he got the better of seven previous Group 1 winners headed by the top-class miler Palace Pier.
At four, Baaeed was kept exclusively to elite company as he landed three more Group 1 contests over a mile, namely the Lockinge, Queen Anne and Sussex Stakes, showing stacks of natural pace and an irresistible turn of foot on each occasion. Connections stepped him up in trip for the Juddmonte International and he passed that test with flying colours to deny Mishriff by a yawning six-and-a-half lengths.
His York effort was awarded an official rating of 135, which was not only the highest turf figure in the world in 2022 but the first time since Frankel that such
Baaeed pictured with Sheikha Hissa: ‘No question that he’ll be oversubscribed’
a lofty mark has been allocated. However, his swansong did not go to script as he could finish only fourth, albeit beaten only a length-and-three-quarters, behind Bay Bridge in the Champion Stakes.
Baaeed is the highest-rated horse by Sea The Stars. He is the fifth foal out of Aghareed, a Listed winner over ten furlongs, a lineage that makes him a fullbrother to Coronation Cup hero Hukum. He is bred on the Sea The Stars - Kingmambo cross that has produced eight black-type winners, including fellow Group 1 scorers Cloth Of Stars and Zelzal. Fittingly given he was bred by the late Hamdan Al Maktoum, his page traces back to the sheikh’s blue hen mare Height Of Fashion.
New Bay - Alava (Anabaa)
Standing: Ballylinch Stud
42 THE OWNER BREEDER
Teme Valley Racing purchased this colt for 200,000gns at Book 2 of the Tattersalls October Yearling Sale and he quickly showed himself to be money well spent as year’s group of new sires might be smaller than usual but with the likes of Baaeed, Blackbeard and Stradivarius retiring for 2023, breeders are not short on either quality or variety
BILL SELWYN BILL SELWYN
New sires Quality INTAKE
Bayside Boy: new to Ballylinch
he made an impressive winning debut in mid-July of his two-year-old year season.
He won just one more race that campaign, albeit an important one in the Champagne Stakes, and confirmed himself among the best of his generation by running third in two Group 1s. He ran behind Native Trail in the Dewhurst Stakes and then Luxembourg in the Vertem Futurity Trophy, when finding his run repeatedly blocked at the business end.
He didn’t cut much ice on his first three starts at three but ran much better than his finishing position suggests when beaten only two lengths into seventh by Coroebus in the St James’s Palace Stakes, when the rub of the green again went against him.
With blinkers applied, the Roger Varian-trained runner resumed winning ways in the Fortune Stakes before putting up a career-best performance on his final outing in the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes. He was waited with in rear but showed a fine attitude and an even better turn of foot to catch the more prominently ridden Modern Games and Jadoomi to win going away by a length and a quarter.
Bred by Ballylinch Stud, who retained an interest after selling the colt as a yearling, Bayside Boy is the eighth and best foal out of the Listed-winning Alava, whose other offspring include two-time Group 2 winner Forest Ranger. He is by Ballylinch’s rising star New Bay, for whom Bayside Boy was part of a notable British Champions Day double along with Champion Stakes hero Bay Bridge.
No Nay Never - Muirin (Born To Sea) Standing: Coolmore Fee: €25,000
Blackbeard’s racing career spanned just the solitary season but he packed plenty into his eight starts, running every month from April to September, winning six times and landing back-to-back Group 1 prizes to be crowned the Cartier champion twoyear-old colt.
He went unbeaten through his first three runs, winning a Dundalk maiden and the First Flier Stakes over five furlongs before stepping up to six to claim the
Marble Hill Stakes in impressive fashion. He was in the frame in the Coventry and Railway Stakes, beaten just a short head in the latter, before resuming winning ways in the Prix Robert Papin.
He returned to France for his first Group 1 assignment in the Prix Morny, in which he prevailed by a game half-length from July Stakes scorer Persian Force.
The Aidan O’Brien-trained colt pitched up in the Middle Park Stakes for his next outing and flashed his brilliance to beat his stablemate The Antarctic by two lengths, while third and fourth went the way of Persian Force and subsequent Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint hero Mischief Magic respectively. He was being prepared for the Breeders’ Cup when a small chip in his knee was discovered after exercise and he was retired from racing.
A 270,000gns Tattersalls December Foal Sale purchase through Jamie McCalmont, the Coolmore and Westerberg-owned colt is one of seven Group/Grade 1 winners by No Nay Never, whose fee has been upped to €175,000 for 2023. Blackbeard was bred by Newstead ››
THE OWNER BREEDER 43
Breeding from Muirin, a winning daughter of Born To Sea who ran fourth in the Moyglare Stud Stakes. In turn Muirin is out of Pivotal’s Group 3 Phoenix Sprintwinning daughter Girouette.
Mehmas - Shoshoni Wind (Sleeping Indian)
Standing: Overbury Stud Fee: £6,500
Overbury Stud have already worked wonders with one Flying Childers Stakes winner in Ardad, and now launch the career of another in the 2021 hero Caturra. A typically speedy and precocious son of Mehmas, the Clive Cox-trained colt ran eight times between April and September of his juvenile year, winning three races along the way. He readily landed a Bath novice event before his first black-type victory in the Rose Bowl Stakes.
His third victory was gained in the Flying Childers Stakes when he showed a good attitude to fend off the short-priced favourite Armor. He rounded out his first season in training when fifth, beaten only a length and a half, by Perfect Power in the Middle Park Stakes. He couldn’t add to his tally at three but was placed in blacktype company on three further occasions, most notably when third behind his elders in the King George at Glorious Goodwood.
Bred by Tally-Ho Stud, Blandford Bloodstock’s 110,000gns Book 2 buy is the fifth foal out of the speedy Shoshoni Wind, a three-time winner and Listed-placed daughter of Sleeping Indian.
Midnight Legend - Giving (Generous)
Standing: Alne Park Stud Fee: £3,000
Mishriff heads classy
At a fee of €20,000, Mishriff rates the priciest new recruit to the French stallion ranks. The son of Make Believe, who hails from the same famed Prince Faisal family as Invincible Spirit and Kodiac, will stand under the Sumbe banner at Montfort et Preaux having won the Prix du Jockey Club, Dubai Sheema Classic and the Juddmonte International, as well as the valuable Saudi Cup.
Not only is Sealiway a new stallion for French breeders to conjure with, he is standing at a new stud as his owners, the Chehboub family, have transformed part of the Quesnay estate into Haras de Beaumont, where the Prix Jean-Luc Lagardere and Champion Stakeswinning son of Galiway will stand at €12,000. A stone’s throw away from Beaumont’s gates is Haras de Bouquetot, which will introduce Zoffany’s National Stakes-winning
David and Kathleen Holmes’ dream of turning the last colt they bred by their rags-to-riches sire Midnight Legend into a stallion has, against all odds, come to fruition with Midnights Legacy taking up residence at Dan and Grace Skelton’s Alne Park Stud.
The dual-purpose performer won eight of his 26 starts during four seasons in training with Alan King, with five Flat successes and three over hurdles. Although he did not gain black type under either
son Thunder Moon at €6,000. Fellow Group 1 winner Mare Australis, the son of Australia who landed the Prix Ganay, enters the fold at Haras de la Hetraie at a fee of €4,500.
Phoenix Stakes scorer Ebro River, a son of Galileo Gold, has been recruited by Haras de la Haie Neuve and introduced at a fee of €4,000, while breeders also have the option of using a son of Wootton Bassett, with Poule d’Essai des Poulains runner-up Texas joining Haras du Hoguenet at €3,800, and Zarak, with the Group 3-winning Lavello standing at Haras du Lion at €3,500.
Germany only has one new stallion in 2023 but he is a significant addition with Torquator Tasso entering service at Gestut Auenquelle at a fee of €20,000. The son of the much-missed Adlerflug is best remembered for his famous victory in the 2021 Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe but he also won two other Group 1s during a stellar career, namely the Grosser Preis von Berlin and the Grosser Preis von Baden.
code, his finest moments on turf came when winning back-to-back runnings of the competitive Northern Dancer Handicap at Epsom, for the latter of which he was given an official rating of 101.
His seven starts over hurdles don’t appear to have revealed the full extent of his ability as a jumper as his victories at Plumpton, Ludlow and Fontwell were gained by a cumulative by 20 and a half lengths, the latest of which was his most impressive as a seven-length romp saw his rating rise to 130.
He is out of the winning Generous mare Giving, making him a full-brother to the Listed-winning juvenile hurdler Midnights’ Gift, while his Passing Glance half-sister Giving Glances also won a Listed hurdle race during the first half of her four-yearold campaign. His dam is a sibling to the Listed-winning Flat runners Burn The Breeze and Lethals Lady; the latter was also runner-up in the Grade 1 Matriarch Stakes. Giving’s six winning siblings also include the dam of Champion Hurdle hero Katchit.
Mehmas - Pardoven (Clodovil) Standing: Derrinstown Stud Fee: €15,000
Mehmas is firmly established as one of the brightest young names among the stallion
44 THE OWNER BREEDER
Sealiway (left): retires to the newly launched Haras de Beaumont
Our Most Exciting Roster Yet MOHAATHER Fee: £15,000 January 1st SLF Standing at Nunnery Stud Standing at Derrinstown Stud The Brilliance of B AAEED Fee: £80,000 October 1st SLF TASLEET Fee: £6,000 January 1st SLF EQTIDAAR New for 2023 Fee: £5,000 January 1st SLF INZAAL AWTAAD Fee: € 5,000 January 1st SLF Fee: € 15,000 January 1st SLF New for 2023 Will Wright: +44 (0)7787 422901 firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com www.shadwellstud.com Stephen Collins | Joe Behan | Kay Skehan Tel: +353 (0)1 6286228 firstname.lastname@example.org www.derrinstown.com To book a nomination or arrange a viewing, contact: | AWTAAD | TASLEET | EQTIDAAR | MOHAATHER | BAAEED | MINZAAL
By NEW BAY one of the best sons of DUBAWI at stud, out of a Stakes winning, Group producing mare from a high quality damline
“He was one of the best two-year-olds of his generation... He is an exceptionally good-looking colt and was very sound to train. He possesses a lot of natural speed and his turn of foot in the Queen Elizabeth II showed the public what we always saw at home.”
BALLYLINCH STUD Thomastown, Co. Kilkenny, Ireland Tel: +353 (0)56 7724217 • email@example.com • www.ballylinchstud.ie NEW TO STUD IN 2023 GR.1 WINNING MILER BY NEW BAY €15,000 BAYSIDE BOY. GROUP 1 WINNER AT 3 Won the Gr.1 Queen Elizabeth II Stakes defeating Gr.1 winners MODERN GAMES and INSPIRAL TOP CLASS AT 2 Won the Gr.2 Champagne Stakes 3rd Gr.1 Dewhurst Stakes 3rd Gr.1 Futurity Trophy Stakes 123
Hugely enthusiastic response to Baaeed
With a significant downsizing of its global numbers and the passing of founder Hamdan Al Maktoum, Shadwell has endured some significant turbulence in its recent past. However, with Sheikh Hamdan’s daughter Sheikha Hissa now at the helm, the Shadwell machine has been operating at full tilt in 2022 and enters into the new year with two hugely exciting stallion prospects that neatly bookend both sides of the market in world champion Baaeed and Group 1-winning sprinter Minzaal.
“Baaeed has been very popular,” reports Stephen Collins, Shadwell’s European bloodstock manager. “We had him at Beech House during the December Sales and we had between 700 and 800 people come through to see him over the four days. We’ve had a hugely enthusiastic response to the horse and when breeders got to see him in the flesh and saw his quality and his athleticism they were very impressed.
“We’ve had nominations coming in on a daily basis and we’re gathering together a very good group of mares for his first year at stud. There’s no question that he’ll be oversubscribed so we’re delighted with the response.”
Although a rationalisation of the broodmare band means Baaeed may not receive the volume of home support that previous retirees have, he will lack for nothing in terms of quality. Group 1 winners Eshaada and Nazeef are among the Shadwell mares, all of whom will either be Group winners or the dams of Group winners, in his debut book.
ranks and now breeders have access to his highest-rated son in Minzaal. A 140,000gns yearling purchase by Shadwell, he went into training with Owen Burrows and quickly made up into one of the most talented two-year-olds of his generation by winning a Salisbury novice before putting up an even more impressive display to land the Gimcrack Stakes.
He rounded out his first season in training with a third-place finish behind Supremacy and Lucky Vega in the Middle Park Stakes.
Although he had something of a truncated three-year-old season, he highlighted the class he possessed with another Group 1 third in the British Champions Sprint Stakes won by Creative Force.
It can be taken as a sign of the faith
On Minzaal, Collins says: “He’s going down a treat and he ticks all the boxes for the Irish market. He was a very speedy juvenile and a Group 1 horse at two, three and four.
“Minzaal is a very good-looking individual and he’s attracting an awful lot of attention. We’re very pleased with the mares that have been put up to him and particularly because of the kinds of breeders who are already supporting him. He’s another who will be fully booked.”
Collins adds: “Last year was a difficult year for all at Shadwell and Derrinstown
that connections had in Minzaal that they persevered at four, and they were rewarded when he won the Hackwood Stakes and, on his final outing, the Haydock Sprint Cup, in which he travelled with typical zest before sprinting clear of Emaraaty Ana for an impressive three and three-quarter length success. He was awarded an official rating of 121 for his Haydock romp.
Bred by Ringfort Stud, Minzaal is the fourth foal and second winner out of the Clodovil made Pardoven. She did not make the track herself but she is out of Dancing Prize, a daughter of Sadler’s Wells who finished third in the Lingfield Oaks Trial, which makes Pardoven a sibling to four black-type performers, including the Group 3-placed Firebet and Seeking The Prize.
but this year, to have a world champion turf horse like Baaeed and Mehmas’s top-rated son Minzaal is just wonderful. If you throw in Hukum with Owen Burrows and Malathaat in America, it’s been a great year.
“It’s particularly poignant with Baaeed that Sheikh Hamdan bought Height Of Fashion from her late Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and five generations later the family has arguably produced the best horse it’s ever had. Sheikh Hamdan would have loved that and I know Sheikha Hissa and her family have got fantastic enjoyment out of that too.”
Dubawi - Come Alive (Dansili)
Standing: Kildangan Stud
New Bay and Night Of Thunder have done plenty to raise Dubawi’s stock as a sire of sires and Kildangan Stud have added arguably his fastest son to its roster for 2023. Bred and raced by Godolphin and trained by Charlie Appleby, Naval Crown won four of his 20 career starts and collected close to £1 million in prize-money, with eight places to his name as well.
He broke his maiden in the Convivial at York and brought the curtain down on his two-year-old campaign with placings in the Prix la Rochette and Prix Thomas Bryon. He shipped to Dubai for the winter months, where he stepped up to a mile
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Minzaal: Group 1 winner ‘going down a treat’ at Derrinstown Stud
and won the Meydan Classic. Shortly after his return to Newmarket he ran fourth in the 2,000 Guineas and then filled the runner-up spot behind stablemate Creative Force in the Jersey Stakes.
He returned to Meydan for the start of his four-year-old campaign and duly won the Al Fahidi Fort and was fourth behind A Case Of You in the Al Quoz Sprint. Freshened up after his travels, he resumed in the Platinum Jubilee Stakes and showed his customary pace up against the stands’ rail before quickening smartly and battling on bravely to prevail by a neck from Creative Force, with Artorious, Campanelle, Highfield Princess, Kinross and Alcohol Free among those in behind. He then found only Alcohol Free too good when attempting to make all the running in the July Cup.
The rising five-year-old is a fourth generation Sheikh Mohammed homebred and is the first foal out of Come Alive, a daughter of Dansili who won the Listed Prix Amandine during her own racing career. In turn Come Alive is out of Portrayal, whose lineage goes back to Truly Special, ancestress of notable talents like Cerulean Sky, Moonstone and L’Ancresse and their talented offspring.
Ardad - Sagely (Frozen Power)
Standing: Dalham Hall Stud Fee: £15,000
This £110,000 breeze-up buy embodies so many of the attributes associated with the Kodiac line, namely pace, precocity and a thoroughly willing attitude. Those qualities combined for the first time when he landed the Coventry Stakes on his third outing for Richard Fahey, quickening through from in rear to collar Go Bears Go by a head.
He was arguably unlucky not to go unbeaten throughout the remainder of his juvenile season having endured a luckless run in the Richmond Stakes, and he atoned
Go Bears Go.
He resumed at three with a cosy success in the Greenham Stakes before failing to see out the mile in the 2,000 Guineas. He was returned to sprinting on his next start and produced a career-best effort to annex the Commonwealth Cup, with his customary late surge carrying him clear of Flaming Rib. He could not add to his tally in three subsequent starts but was far from disgraced against his elders in the July Cup, Prix Maurice de Gheest and British Champion Sprint Stakes.
Bred by Tally-Ho Stud, he is the best runner by Overbury Stud’s breakthrough sire Ardad, the high-class son of Kodiac. He is the first foal out of Sagely, a halfsister to the Listed-placed Sagaciously, who in turn bred the Listed-winning and Group 3-placed Epic Poet. Perfect Power’s fourth dam is Saganeca, meaning the likes of Sagamix, Sagacity and Shastye, dam of Japan, Mogul and Secret Gesture, all appear in his further family.
for that result in no uncertain terms by winning back-to-back Group 1s on his next two starts. His first top-level triumph came in the Prix Morny when he swept through to win going away, with his Richmond conqueror Asymmetric back in third. The same tactics were deployed with the same outcome next up in the Middle Park Stakes as he came from last to first to see off Castle Star, Armor and his old adversary
Mehmas - Vida Amorosa (Lope De Vega) Standing: Tally-Ho Stud Fee: €10,000
There are real shades of Mehmas about this tough and talented colt, who begins his stallion career alongside his sire at TallyHo Stud. A €225,000 yearling purchase by renowned judges Peter and Ross Doyle, the Richard Hannon-trained Persian
48 THE OWNER BREEDER
Persian Force: joins his sire Mehmas at Tally-Ho Stud
“There are real shades of Mehmas about the tough Persian Force”
Continuing an impressive streak of first crop CLASSIC winners & producers since DUBAWI Sadler’s Wells, Pivotal, Acclamation & Scat Daddy OUTCROSS BE NEXT in line! Mathieu LE FORESTIER +33 (0)7 76 37 65 28 firstname.lastname@example.org Tony FRY +44 (0)7725 041 815 email@example.com Dubawi Makf Make Believe Mishriff MAKE BELIEVE x CONTRADICT (RAVEN’S PASS) €20,000 LF WWW.SUMBE.FR
© Agence G / Z. Lupa
Having gained 18 Group victories, including seven top-flight contests, over seven seasons in training, Stradivarius is a bonafide racing celebrity. However, while people know all about Stradivarius’s achievements on the track, Joe Bradley, the National Stud’s Head of Bloodstock, says the son of Sea The Stars offers so much more than just his deep race record.
“We had our open house during the breeding stock sales and Stradivarius went down incredibly well,” he says. “He’s not the traditional staying horse in terms
Force was sent off a well-fancied evens favourite for the Brocklesby Stakes and duly obliged with an impressive display. That effort was followed by another easy success in a Newbury conditions event before he found only Bradsell too good in the Coventry Stakes.
He made his Pattern race breakthrough in the July Stakes, which he won by a ready length and a half and had subsequent Grade 1 winner Mysterious Night back in third.
He was kept to elite company thereafter and acquitted himself with real credit to finish second in the Phoenix Stakes and Prix Morny, when behind Little
of his physique; he’s strong and almost has a bit of a sprinting look to him. When people see that they’ve been taken aback a bit.
“The other huge positive is his ability to walk. Coming off the back of the foal sales, that’s what everyone is looking for in the progeny of these stallions, horses who can walk, so I think breeders really paid attention to his movement.”
Bradley continues: “He is letting down well and he’s very happy in his new routine. We couldn’t have asked for him to settle in any better. We’re in a strong position in terms of nominations and breeding rights have, bar a few, all been sold. It’s so interesting seeing the different
Big Bear and Blackbeard respectively, third in the Middle Park Stakes, when again behind Blackbeard, before a fourthplaced effort behind Mischief Magic in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint.
Bred by Tom Lacy and pinhooked by Tally-Ho for €75,000 as a foal, Persian Force is the second foal out of Vida Amorosa, making him a brother to the dual winner and Richmond Stakes third Gubbass. The daughter of Lope De Vega is a sibling to the dam of dual Group 3-winning sprinter Garrus, who is by Mehmas’s sire Acclamation, while champion sire Danehill Dancer appears back in the family.
types of mares in terms of distances that people are sending. We’ve had a range from some nice six- and seven-furlong mares through to the mile to mile-and-aquarter types.”
Reflecting on the significance of standing one of the few genuine equine household names from recent years, Bradley adds: “It’s huge to have such a high-profile horse. He’s a legend, a big personality, and everybody knows him across the world. We’re really proud to have him and we’re excited about what the future holds. When you go up to the stallion unit in the morning it’s really cool to see Stradivarius looking over the door at you.”
Bated Breath - Sky Crystal (Galileo) Standing: Ballyhane Stud Fee: €6,500
The latest Clipper Logistics colour-bearer to join the Ballyhane Stud roster is Space Traveller, who showed high-class form across five seasons in training. He was a smart and forward juvenile, winning his first two starts in July and also finishing second in the Prix Eclipse.
He progressed throughout his threeyear-old season as podium finishes in the European Free Handicap and the Carnarvon Stakes were followed by
50 THE OWNER BREEDER
Stradivarius begins his stallion career at the National Stud
‘We’re in a strong position’
Fee: £5,000 1st Oct SLF Triple Gr.2 winning 2yo Gr.2 & Gr.3 5f winner as a 3yo Royal Ascot Gr.2 winner Best son of Champion First Season Sire SOCIETY ROCK Sign a nomination to A’Ali by the beginning of the breeding season and you could win two tickets to the Dubai World Cup, Rugby World Cup Final or Wimbledon Men’s Final. Give your mare the best sporting chance! @newsellspark Julian Dollar or Gary Coffey +44 (0)1763 846000 newsells-park.com
victory in the Jersey Stakes at Royal Ascot, in which he got the better of Space Blues, who went on to win three Group/Grade 1s. He gained his fourth victory three starts later when landing the Boomerang Stakes at Leopardstown.
He was restricted to just one start at four, when sixth behind Circus Maximus in the Queen Anne Stakes, but showed his talent remained intact at five by landing the Ganton Stakes. Soon after he left Richard Fahey’s stable for US-based trainer Brendan Walsh, and while he couldn’t add to his record he did reach the places in three Grade 1 contests, namely the Woodbine Mile, Pegasus World Cup Turf Invitational and the Frank E. Kilroe Mile, when beaten just a head by Count Again.
Bred by the El Catorce Partnership and bought by Ballyhane’s Joe Foley for 85,000gns as a yearling, Space Traveller is the fourth foal out of the winning Galileo mare Sky Crystal.
Sky Crystal’s dam is a sibling to four Pattern winners, most notably Fillies’ Mile heroine Crystal Music, as well as John Porter Stakes scorer Dubai Success, Lancashire Oaks heroine State Crystal and May Hill Stakes victress Solar Crystal.
STATE OF REST
Starspangledbanner - Repose (Quiet American) Standing: Rathbarry Stud Fee: €25,000
There may be higher-rated horses retiring to stud in 2023 but none can boast the cast iron constitution of State Of Rest. Not only did the globetrotting son of Starspangledbanner win four Group/ Grade 1 prizes but he became the first thoroughbred in history to land three consecutive top-level races on three different continents.
He was a smart juvenile, winning a Fairyhouse maiden on debut before four starts in Pattern company, most notably when third behind Chindit in the Champagne Stakes, but it was at three that State Of Rest really began to show his true colours.
Joseph O’Brien sent his charge to the US for the Saratoga Derby Invitational, which he duly won by a length. He then shipped to the southern hemisphere to tackle one of Australia’s most prestigious races, the Cox Plate, and took his topflight tally to two with a gutsy victory over Anamoe, who subsequently landed five Group 1s to give the form a decidedly solid look.
He returned to Europe for his next start and proceeded to see off Pretty Tiger and Sealiway to rack up a remarkable hat-trick
in the Prix Ganay. He was beaten only half a length when third in a Tattersalls Gold Cup that didn’t really see him to maximum advantage, but swiftly resumed the winning thread with an all-the-way success in the Prince of Wales’s Stakes, seeing off Bay Bridge by a length.
State Of Rest is the second foal out of Repose, an unraced daughter of Quiet American from a deep family. She is a half-sister to two Listed winners in Prince Alzain and Echo River, while her dam, the Listed-winning Monaassabaat, is a daughter of champion two- and three-year-old It’s In The Air. All manner of notable talents appear back in the pedigree, including the likes of Balanchine, Coroebus and Thunder Snow.
Repose, who was purchased privately
his first two Gold Cups and his second and third Goodwood Cups.
His third Gold Cup, gained at the age of six, rates a career highlight as he showed his customary enthusiasm and potent turn of foot before storming ten lengths clear of Nayef Road. He added a fourth Goodwood Cup to his resume on his next outing, taking his Group 1 tally to seven.
Although he was unable to add any further top-level prizes to his record, he won four more races, including a third Yorkshire Cup, a third Lonsdale Cup and a second Doncaster Cup. He retired with 18 Group wins to his name, more than any other European-trained horse.
Out of the Listed-placed Bering mare Private Life, Stradivarius is a sibling to five winners, including the German Group 3 scorer Persian Storm. His dam is a sibling to four black-type performers, including the Listed scorer Parisienne, whose daughter Patineuse bred dual hemisphere Group 1 hero Protectionist. A whole host of Wildenstein celebrities appear back in the pedigree, including Stradivarius’s third dam Pawneese, while names like Peintre Celebre and Persian King appear a further generation back.
by Juddmonte in foal to Frankel back in May, has produced one other winner in Tranquil Lady, a dual Group 3 winner and 2,700,000gns purchase by Godolphin during this year’s December Mares Sale.
Sea The Stars - Private Life (Bering) Standing: The National Stud Fee: £10,000
Bjorn Nielsen’s homebred offers breeders access to one of the most popular, sound and talented racehorses of recent times, with the son of Sea The Stars having won no fewer than 20 races during seven remarkable seasons in training with John Gosden.
Although known for his exploits over marathon trips, Stradivarius possessed the speed to break his maiden over a mile at two, a feat that will come as no surprise to those who have seen his athletic physique and eyecatching walk in the flesh. At three he progressed in leaps and bounds, improving from Bath handicap win to his first Group 1, the Goodwood Cup, in just four runs.
He resumed at four with a smooth success in the Yorkshire Cup, and thus began an unbeaten run of ten races that took in four more Group 1 prizes, namely
Stradivarius’ stud career has been launched with an array of enticing incentives attached. For instance, the breeder of any Group 1 winner in Britain, Ireland or France from his first crop will receive a bonus of £250,000, while the breeders of any Group 2 and Group 3 winners will each receive £100,000.
Kingman - Waldlerche (Monsun) Standing: Knockhouse Stud Fee: €2,500
National Hunt breeders will gain access to a notably well-bred sort in Knockhouse Stud’s new recruit, who is standing in partnership with his co-breeders Gestut Ammerland.
Injury restricted Waldkonig to just five starts, but even that was enough to show himself to be well above average, as he won three races, including the Gordon Richards Stakes on his final outing.
The son of Kingman hails from the famous German ‘W’ family and is the fourth foal out of Waldlerche, making him a half-brother to Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe hero Waldgeist, who now stands at Ballylinch Stud, and Prix de Malleret scorer Waldlied. His dam, a Group 3-placed daughter of Monsun, is a half-sister to St Leger victor Masked Marvel, who has already made his mark as a sire of Grade 1-winning jumpers with Teahupoo.
52 THE OWNER BREEDER
“None can boast the cast iron constitution of State Of Rest”
Words: Nancy Sexton
In a world that is getting ever-smaller, there is always plenty to be gained for breeders by thinking on an international scale. Whether it is France, Germany, the US or even Japan, the options available often provide access to stallions with different strengths and attributes, not to mention some outcross sire lines.
British and Irish breeders, of course, are well versed towards the excellence of the Aga Khan Studs’ Siyouni, who made his name off low-priced crops to become a multiple French champion sire and top ten European stallion. Siyouni’s fee has been increased to €150,000 for 2023 following a year highlighted by the Moyglare Stud Stakes heroine Tahiyra, and it would appear that the Aga Khan Studs has repeated the trick with Zarak, whose fee has more than doubled to €60,000.
Beautifully bred as a Dubawi son of Zarkava and a Group 1 winner to go with it, Zarak’s first crop contains eight stakes winners led by the Prix de Sandringham winner Purplepay as well as the Prix de Diane runner-up La Parisienne. A winner to runners strike-rate of just over 60% is also the best figure of 2022 recorded by any European-based sire.
Siyouni and Zarak fulfil a very valuable role as the flagbearers for the French stallion industry. For some years the lesser relation against Britain and Ireland, it received a real boost with the successes of Le Havre, Kendargent, Wootton Bassett and then Siyouni. Like Siyouni, Kendargent remains in service, in his case for €17,000 at his long-term home of Haras de Colleville. However, against that, Wootton
Bassett now resides at Coolmore in Ireland and Le Havre died earlier this year at the age of 16 at Sumbe.
The task now for Sumbe, the former Montfort et Preaux property bought by Nurlan Bizakov in late 2019, is to find another stallion of the calibre of Le Havre. Time will reveal all but it has certainly placed itself in a position to do so with the acquisition of champion globetrotter Mishriff. Winner of the Prix du Jockey Club and Dubai Sheema Classic on turf, Prince Faisal’s relation to Invincible Spirit and Kodiac also exhibited a rare versatility to take the Saudi Cup on dirt. In all, he won or was placed in no fewer than 11 Group 1 races.
Installed at €20,000, Mishriff will be well supported by Sumbe, which plans to send around 25 mares, as well as Prince Faisal’s Nawara Stud, which will send between six and eight including multiple Group 3 winner Oscula, a recent €1 million purchase at the Arqana December Sale, and Group 2 scorer Bounce The Blues, bought for 450,000gns.
“He held his form at Group 1 level for so long and was such a sound horse,” says stud manager Tony Fry. “He was a horse of a lifetime for the Prince and it’s great to have the opportunity to stand a horse like this. He’s been busy showing since he got to us and has been going down well.”
Breeders use Sumbe stallions in the knowledge that the operation will do what they can to support them. To that end, the operation purchased stock by its young Group 1-winning sprinter Golden Horde at the Arqana December Sale and plan to
continue supporting him in the ring.
“The message is join us and we’re with you all the way,” says Fry. “We’ll support Mishriff and we’ll continue to support Golden Horde – we’ll send about 12 mares to him next season. What we have by him we like, and we’ll spread them with different trainers. We’ll send some to Clive Cox and we’ll have a few in France. We’ll give him every chance.”
Cox trained Golden Horde to win the Richmond Stakes at two and Commonwealth Cup at three. A consistent presence that year in all the top sprints, he was also Group 1-placed on four occasions. His first crop are yearlings and he is due to stand this season for €8,000.
“He’s always had a lovely walk and presence about him,” says Fry. “And he’s let down really well. There’s a real look of [damsire] Pivotal to him.”
The Sumbe roster also offers Recorder (€3,000), the Queen’s Acomb Stakes winner whose first crop includes the Listed winners Hot Queen and Enola, and De Treville, a Group 3-placed Oasis Dream half-brother to Too Darn Hot. The latter has been utilised more or less as a private stallion by Rashit Shaykhutdinov but he has rewarded his support by producing Listed scorer Gregorian and stakes-placed Diadema out of a first crop of 21. His fee has been doubled to €5,000.
“He’s nearly a private stallion but they’ve come out running,” says Fry. “He’s a very good-looking horse and he produces nice-looking stock. Last year, he covered his biggest book of outside mares so the best is yet to come.”
He adds: “Losing Le Havre was a big blow for us and for France. But from Mishriff to Recorder at €3,000, along with our two horses in between, I think we offer value and something for everyone to consider.”
Haras de Bouquetot is also in the enviable position of offering breeders a range of horses to suit different tastes. The arrival of National Stakes winner Thunder Moon (€6,000) adds a further flavour of top juvenile form to a roster that already boasts Molecomb Stakes winner Armor, the only son of No Nay Never at stud in France. A youthful roster also includes the Group 1 winners Wooded, a son of Wootton Bassett who won the Prix de l’Abbaye, and Irish 2,000 Guineas hero Romanised.
Thunder Moon, by Zoffany, had the measure of St Mark’s Basilica when winning the National Stakes on his second start and was later second in the Prix Jean Prat.
“We were looking for a two-year-old performer at the highest level to recruit for France as it’s what has worked in the
54 THE OWNER BREEDER
From new additions Mishriff and Torquator Tasso to proven names Siyouni and Justify, there
are a wealth of stallion options for British and Irish breeders when looking further afield
past with the likes of Siyouni and Wootton Bassett,” says Benoit Jeffroy, deputy director and stud manager of Haras de Bouquetot. “Not only is Thunder Moon a Group 1 winner at two over seven furlongs but he was also a close runner-up in the Prix Jean Prat at three. We were delighted to secure him and his speed profile to the French market.
“Al Shaqab and partners will support him strongly with about 20 mares. He has been extremely well received since he arrived. Breeders seem to fancy his profile of an athletic horse with fantastic movement and a nice expressive head. Breeding rights have been sold and it will allow him to be supported by numerous French breeders in the long term.”
Armor, whose performances also included a placing in the Middle Park Stakes for Richard Hannon, is about to commence his second season at a fee of €5,000. He covered approximately 60 mares in his debut year.
“When Armor arrived, we syndicated him and all shares that were up for sale were sold,” says Jeffroy. “But we were actually surprised that he didn’t cover much more mares with such a precocious profile and as a son of No Nay Never.
“Maybe our French market is not used to these horses who retire at three. The horse was also not physically fully mature last year. This year, he’s completely transformed and is looking more and more like his sire. We’re eagerly awaiting his first foals and are confident he’ll cover more mares this season than last year.”
The market has taken a warm view of both Romanised (€7,000) and Wooded (€12,000), with Romanised’s first two books hovering between the 127 and 139 mark and Wooded holding steady at approximately 120 mares each season.
“We’re really excited about Wooded’s first foals,” says Jeffroy. “Our homebreds are strong and powerful individuals – I don’t think we’ve seen the best individuals
at the foal sales – and it will be interesting to see the first yearlings sell next year.
“When Adam Sangster came here last spring, he saw the outstanding individuals we have in our fields and he quickly made up his mind about shuttling Wooded to Swettenham Stud in Australia.
“Romanised has been very well received and strongly supported by French breeders. He’s actually covered more mares in his second season than he did in the first, and that’s all thanks to the wordof-mouth. He stamps his foals with quality and his movement. We would like to thank Romanised’s owner Mr Robert Ng for his trust with his stallion.”
There is also a strong proven element running through Bouquetot led by Olympic Glory (€4,000), whose stud record is headed by the Group 1-winning fillies Watch Me and Grand Glory, and Zelzal (€15,000), France’s busiest stallion last season as the recipient of 189 mares off the back of a start highlighted by the
THE OWNER BREEDER 55 ››
Mishriff: remarkably versatile globetrotter joins Sumbe in Normandy
North American Grade 3 winners Dolce Zel and Ouraika.
“Zelzal was indeed the busiest stallion in France last year, further to his first crop’s excellent start,” says Jeffroy. “One should realise that Zelzal didn’t cover many mares in his first years at stud and, with small crops to start with, he’s already had two Group winners with Ouraika and Dolce Zel as well as the stakes-winning two-yearold Zelda. With only 16 runners from his second crop of two-year-olds, he’s already got six winners including three promising horses for next year – Alto with Henri Devin, Brisbane with François Rohaut and Olkovshka with Christophe Ferland.”
Al Wukair (€5,000), one of the most accomplished representatives of the Warning line at stud, has also sired a brace of stakes winners in his first crop while Ectot (€5,000) is building a fine dualpurpose profile. There is also an intriguing addition for 2023 in the 2,000 Guineas winner Galileo Gold (€7,000), who sired the Phoenix Stakes winner Ebro River and ultra tough Group 3 scorer Oscula from his first crop bred at Tally-Ho Stud.
“It was an idea that grew up last spring when we started thinking about Toronado staying in Australia from this season onwards,” says Jeffroy on the decision to bring Galileo Gold to France. “It came with the fact we’d have a proven stallion to fill the void left with Toronado’s departure. It wasn’t the original plan but after some
Ribchester is the sire of four first-crop stakes winners, among them the Prix Perth winner Facteur Cheval.
He joins a roster at Logis that has much to look forward to with Victor Ludorum (€15,000), the Prix Jean-Luc Lagardere winner who won the Poule d’Essai des Poulains at three. By Shamardal, he also hails from the female family of Shamardal, and was extremely popular in his first season as the recipient of over 150 mares.
Fellow Logis stallion Cloth Of Stars,
Shaqab will support Thunder Moon with about 20 mares”
another champion whose racing career was highlighted by a win in the Prix Ganay, holds steady at €7,000 following the achievements of his first runners, a group that includes the promising Nottingham winner Laafi.
There is also a welcome new name among the studs in Haras de Beaumont, the breeding operation of Kamel and
was formerly part of Haras du Quesnay.
It is from the Quesnay stallion yard that Prix du Jockey Club winner Intello (€8,000), the sire of Group 1 winners Adhamo and Intellogent, shifts, while the durable Group 3 winner Stunning Spirit (€3,000) transfers from Haras du Hoguenet. Centre of attention, however, is Sealiway (€12,000), the champion twoyear-old of France who trained on to win the Champion Stakes and run second in the Prix du Jockey Club at three.
Sealiway might be the apple of Beaumont’s eye but his background has a distinct look of Haras de Colleville to it given he represents the cross of Galiway over Kendargent. Both have rewarded Colleville’s backing to rise from a lowly level to become premier French sires; 20-year-old Kendargent (€17,000) boasts 40 stakes winners including fellow Colleville stallion Goken (€15,000), himself the sire of last season’s Listed-winning juveniles Sivana and Lova, while Galiway owes his ascent from €3,000 to €30,000 to the success of his first two crops, which consists of nine stakes winners from fewer than 90 foals.
One of the most powerful rosters in France belongs to Haras d’Etreham. Formerly the launchpad of Wootton Bassett, the farm now offers his best son Almanzor (€25,000), who appears to boast a
Japan: Group 1 winner has been well received in Germany
Stud fee: € 11,000 Terms: October 1st
breeders. In the case of Persian King, one of his auction highlights arrived in Newmarket courtesy of a 130,000gns Tattersalls December foal. As for Hello Youmzain, his first foals sold for up to €150,000.
As far as producing winners is concerned, they don’t come much more reliable than Sunday Silence’s grandson Dabirsim (€8,000). At the time of writing, he had sired almost 60 winners during 2022 while an overall group of seven stakes winners includes a filly familiar to a British and Irish audience in Albany Stakes heroine Different League. Dabirsim is a new addition to Haras du Montaigu alongside fellow Group 1 winner Shamalgan (€4,000), the sire of last year’s German Oaks heroine Toskana Belle. Montaigu, of course, offers a varied roster to suit both codes that also includes the $9.5 million earner Flintshire (€6,500) and German Horse of the Year Dschingis Secret (€4,000).
Proven Group 1 stud records, meanwhile, sit behind Muhaarar, who stands at Haras de Faunes for €7,000, and veteran Lawman (€6,000), who stands at the newly launched Karwin Stud alongside first-season sire Keiai Nautique (€5,000), a Group 1 winner by Deep Impact, and the Group 2-winning Scat Daddy horse Van Beethoven (€4,500).
Among the younger proven horses, it should pay to keep an eye on Haras du Petit Tellier’s The Grey Gatsby (€12,000)
given the success of his first crop, which contains four stakes winners including the Classic-placed Mylady.
There is also plenty to choose from when it comes to horses with two-year-old form, notably the Phoenix Stakes winner Ebro River (€4,000). He has retired to stand at Haras de la Haie Neuve alongside the Classic-placed Le Brivido (€3,500), a son of Siyouni whose first crop – conceived at Overbury Stud – sold for up to €77,000, and Champagne Stakes winner Seahenge (€3,500), by Scat Daddy.
Haras du Mont Goubert also offers a Champagne Stakes winner in the form of Threat (€4,000) while Fighting Irish (€3,000), a son of Camelot who won the Criterium de Maisons-Laffitte at two for Harry Dunlop, is based at Haras d’Annebault alongside former Coolmore stallion Gustav Klimt (€3,500), whose first crop includes the stakes-placed Sopran Blakey.
Hopes running high for Japan
Germany does not boasts the numerical power of either Britain or Ireland, with its annual foal crop having dropped to around 800 in recent years. It’s a sad and strange development for a nation where the thoroughbred remains highly regarded for its quality and soundness.
Indeed, what it lacks in quantity it more than makes up for in quality. For that, look no further than champion Torquator Tasso, who shone on the international stage
with his victory in the 2021 Arc for Gestut Auenquelle. The winner of six races in all, including the Grosser Preis von Berlin as a three-year-old, Torquator Tasso is new to Auenquelle at a fee of €20,000. Not only does he offer access to the Adlerflug sire line but he also descends directly from blue hen Allegretta and is inbred twice to her dam Anatevka.
“We are extremely proud of Torquator Tasso and of being able to offer him as the first German-owned Arc winner to stand in Germany,” says Stefan Ullrich of Gestut Auenquelle. “He has settled in very well. He is happy out in the field, which is next to Soldier Hollow, and he socialises with some cattle during the day.
“We will send him several mares because we really believe in him. We have had bookings from nearly all the major German studs and also almost the same number of nominations from breeders outside Germany. So we are looking forward to next spring.”
Auenquelle’s former champion sire Soldier Hollow, the sire of five Group 1 winners in total, will also be available this season at the age of 23.
Germany breeders also have plenty to look forward to in the case of Japan, who is about to commence his second season at Gestut Etzean alongside the Shamardal pair Amaron (€4,500), sire of 2020 Pretty Polly Stakes heroine Run Wild, and Waldpfad (€3,000), winner of the Hackwood Stakes.
58 THE OWNER BREEDER
Hello Youmzain: forms part of a powerful roster at Haras d’Etreham BILL SELWYN
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Japan is one of those rare horses who has lived up to expectations throughout his life. Out of Group 1 producer Shastye, he was a 1,300,000gns yearling and having been a Group 2 winner at two, went on to win the Juddmonte International and Grand Prix de Paris during a championship three-year-old campaign and a brace of Group 3 events as an older horse. He stands for €11,000 as the property of Etzean, Gestut Farhof and Bernhard and Brigitte Matusche.
“He was very well received in Germany last year,” says Etzean’s Ralf Kredel. “He covered 83 mares and was heavily supported by Etzean, the Matusche family and Gestut Fahrhof as well as nearly all the leading German stud farms and breeders; 40% of his book were black-type mares or producers, including the dams of Group 1 horses Alter Adler, Miss Yoda, Olorda and Virginia Joy. He also covered German 1,000 Guineas winner Lancade and champion two-year-olds Monami and Whispering Angel.”
He adds: “He is the perfect stallion to us. His pedigree, race record, looks and character is superb. He was our first choice and in the beginning we thought that we wouldn’t be able to stand him.
“Currently, he is the only son of Galileo in Germany, a sire line that has been very successful here. He also carries two top German lines in his pedigree in Allegretta and Schwarzgold, which means that there will be a bit of line-breeding when mated with German mares. I am looking forward to that being a success.
“We are very proud that such a stallion is standing at Etzean. Not often in German history has there been a stallion of his calibre retiring directly to stud. Dashing Blade was similarly exciting but did stand one unlucky season in Britain before being bought by us. He was a great success for Etzean and we hope that Japan will be in the same league.”
Etzean has also added high-class sprinter Waldpfad, a relation to Waldgeist, to its roster for 2023.
“He covered two seasons at Gestut Erftmuhle with the strong support of his owners Gestut Brummerhof and other German breeders,” says Kredel. “He looks spectacular, as do his first crop of foals.”
Speed is also the theme behind Counterattack, a Group 1-placed sprinter in his native Australia who returns to Gestut Karlshof at a fee of €7,500 having left behind three stakes winners out of a first German crop of 37 foals.
Isfahan (€7,500) is another worthy of international attention given his first crop contained two of the leading German three-year-olds of 2021 in Sisfahan, winner
of the German Derby, and German Oaks runner-up Isfahani. He stands at Gestut Ohlerweiherhof, while the historic Gestut Rottgen houses Melbourne Cup hero Protectionist (€6,500), one of the last Flat-orientated sons of Monsun at stud and sire of multiple Group 2 winner Amazing Grace, alongside its German Derby hero Windstoss (€4,000), whose first crop are yearlings of 2023.
Areion, one of the great stalwarts of the German industry who died late last year, is represented by the Group 1winning two-year-old Alson (€6,000) at Gestut Schlenderhan, as well as the Group 2-winning miler Rubaiyat (€4,500), a new recruit to Gestut Ohlerweiherhof.
Hopes also run high for the multiple Group 1 winner Best Solution (€5,000), whose globetrotting exploits for Godolphin took in wins in the Caulfield Cup as well as the Grosser Preis von Baden and Grosser Preis von Berlin. The son of Kodiac stands at Gestut Lunzen on behalf of a consortium of powerful German owner-breeders and, as such, has been very well supported so far. His first yearlings sold last year for up to €120,000.
Temple the value in Kentucky
Medaglia d’Oro (Jonabell Farm: $100,000), War Front ($100,000: Claiborne Farm), Speightstown (WinStar Farm: $80,000), Uncle Mo (Ashford Stud: $150,000), Quality Road (Lane’s End Farm: $200,000), American Pharoah (Ashford Stud: $60,000) and Hard Spun (Jonabell Farm: $35,000) are all older proven Grade 1 sires who continue to work for breeders as effective options for both dirt and turf racing. As such, each is invariably well represented in Europe on an annual basis.
Yet to be well represented in Europe is Three Chimneys Farm’s Gun Runner, but by all accounts he is being supported
by several leading European ownerbreeders in 2023, and rightly so given his outstanding first crop includes no fewer than six Grade 1 winners. A $16 million earner on the track himself, the son of Candy Ride now stands for a private fee.
It will also be interesting to watch the progress of Triple Crown hero Justify (Ashford Stud: $100,000), whose six firstcrop stakes winners include the talented Irish fillies Statuette and Aspen Grove.
Among those Kentucky-based stallions standing for under $25,000, Spendthrift Farm’s Temple City must rank as a value play at $5,000. The sole son of Dynaformer left at stud in Kentucky, this proven Grade 1 sire is North America’s fourth leading active turf stallion of 2022.
Another member of the Hail To Reason sire line, Blame (Claiborne Farm: $25,000) has long proven his ability to throw highclass turf runners on a regular basis, with the Group/Grade 1 winning fillies Abscond and Senga leading the way in that bracket.
Claiborne also has several turforientated stallions to look forward to, notably War Of Will ($15,000), a son of War Front who won the Preakness Stakes on dirt and Grade 1 Maker’s Mark Mile on turf. His first foals were well received at auction, selling for an average of $102,762. Fellow Claiborne resident Catholic Boy ($15,000) was also a Grade 1 winner on dirt and turf, while a light race record capped by a Grade 3 victory probably doesn’t do justice to the Dubawi horse Demarchelier, whose career was restricted by injury. Both Catholic Boy and Demarchelier have their first runners this year.
Kentucky also possesses a welcome member of the Sunday Silence sire line in Yoshida (WinStar Farm: $10,000), another versatile performer who won Grade 1 races on dirt and turf. He has over 100 two-yearolds to run for him this year.
Sunday Silence can also be found in the background of Gainesway Farm’s Karakontie ($10,000), in his case as damsire. Winner of the Poule d’Essai des Poulains for the Niarchos family, Karakontie has been well represented in Europe, where his runners include Horris Hill Stakes winner Kenzai Warrior.
Gainesway Farm is also home to Raging Bull ($10,000), a Wildenstein-bred son of Dark Angel who won three Grade 1 races for Peter Brant. He has been extremely well supported by his owner.
It is also worth paying attention to the start made by the champion turf horse Oscar Performance (Mill Ridge Farm: $20,000), whose first crop of two-yearolds includes a Grade 2 winner on turf in Andthewinneris alongside a dirt stakes winner in Red Carpet Ready.
60 THE OWNER BREEDER
Justify: American Triple Crown winner has already sired stakes winners on turf and dirt out of his first crop
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An annual pilgrimage - trails return in welcome full flight
It has been a long time since breeders were able to take full advantage of the Irish and French stallion trails. Invaluable as a means of viewing horses while meeting those behind each operation, they have gained in popularity to become an integral part of the year’s early bloodstock calendar.
Then as Covid hit and continued to linger, both events had understandably to be shelved in their original form. They could easily have been pulled altogether yet the marketing bodies attached to each trail – Irish Thoroughbred Marketing (ITM) and the French Racing and Breeding Committee (FRBC) – did their best to keep them going, firstly by hosting the 2021 editions virtually and then in the case of Ireland restricting them to industry professionals in 2022.
Indeed, the 2023 ITM Irish Stallion Trail will be held for the first time without restrictions since 2020. It’s a very welcome development, not just in the opportunities that it provides to breeders but also in the good that it does in showcasing the industry to a wider audience.
“The Covid period was challenging in so many ways and it is a credit to all those working in the thoroughbred breeding industry that the wheels kept turning,” says Alex Cairns, marketing executive of ITM. “The ITM Irish Stallion Trail was first held in 2015 so this will be the ninth edition. Part of the appeal is that visitors can view a high volume of stallions across the country without having to book in at each farm, so being able to travel freely is key.
“We are very pleased with how the event has developed and become an annual pilgrimage for breeders and racing enthusiasts alike. Alongside this, it serves a broader purpose in opening up the world of thoroughbred breeding to racing fans and the uninitiated, helping to complete the picture and enhance their engagement with the sport.”
The ITM Irish Stallion Trail takes place on January 13-14, and so far there “has been a great enthusiasm towards this year’s event,” says Cairns. Over 30 stallion farms will throw open their doors, among them high-profile Flat operations such as Coolmore, Darley’s Kildangan Stud, Ballylinch Stud, Irish National Stud
and Rathbarry Stud. Similarly, the trail is not short on jumps-oriented stallion farms, a list which includes Arctic Tack Stud, Burgage Stud, Coolagown Stud, Knockhouse Stud and Whytemount Stud alongside Coolmore’s National Hunt arms of Grange Stud and The Beeches. Indeed, the event stretches across Ireland, encompassing Starfield Stud in County Westmeath and Roveagh Lodge Stud in County Galway down to Rathbarry and Glenview Studs near Fermoy in County Cork to go with everyone else in between.
Many of the stud farms involved are veterans of the event but there are also two new names opening for 2023 in Sweep Lane Stud in County Kildare and Clongiffen Stud in County Meath.
A week following the Irish trail, the French equivalent, otherwise known as Les Route Des Etalons, takes place on the weekend of January 21-22. The Route is not just a domestic event, with it having been swift to gain interest from British and Irish breeders keen to get a glimpse of the array of Flat and National Hunt stallions on show. Many visitors choose to utilise the seaside town of Deauville and its neighbour Trouville as a base, and with good reason, given their host of culinary options and proximity to various stud farms.
The French stallion scene has undergone a major shift in recent years.
Gone are Wootton Bassett, who was sold to stand in Ireland for Coolmore, and Le Havre, who died last year. The famed nursery Haras du Quesnay is also sadly no longer in operation under the Head family following the death of Alec Head in the summer.
However, the Aga Khan Studs’ Siyouni continues to consolidate his place as a leading sire, while his stud-mate Zarak continues to gain respect as one of Europe’s most exciting stallions. Hopes will be high at Haras d’Etreham that its young Group 1 winners Persian King and Hello Youmzain, both of whom have first yearlings this year, will be able to follow suit.
Outstanding globetrotter Mishriff has retired to Nurlan Bizakov’s Sumbe, while there is also a new name among the studs in Haras de Beaumont, the base for Kamel and Pauline Chehboub’s breeding enterprise on land purchased from Haras du Quesnay. Beaumont will offer a mixture of the proven and new for 2023 having secured Intello to stand alongside its Champion Stakes winner Sealiway and Group 3 scorer Stunning Spirit.
It is plain to see that none of the enthusiasm behind both trails, from those organising to those hosting, has dimmed over the past few years. Back operating in full flight, there are few better ways for the bloodstock enthusiast to start the new year.
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No Nay Never: leading sire will be among those on show during the ITM Stallion Trail
It has been a stellar year at Tattersalls HQ in Newmarket, where among the many figures of note was one showing yearling turnover in excess of 211 million guineas.
The previous high, set in 2018, was some 45m guineas less; in other words the company had sailed into uncharted territory well before this, the final yearling sale of 2022, took its turn at the wheel. A year-end chance for vendors to offer a backward yearling or one that had encountered an issue during the autumn, it turned over 4.5m guineas, down 11 per cent on last year, when clearing 86 per cent of the 151 lots on offer.
Nine made a six-figure sum, headed by a Sea The Stars filly who was sold to bloodstock agent Alex Elliott on behalf of Valmont for 260,000gns. Being a
full-sister to Australian Group 1 winner Fifty Stars added to the appeal for her new owners, who will put her into training with Ralph Beckett. Consigned by Whatton Manor Stud, she was bred at Airlie Stud.
Breeze-up consignors were shopping for last-minute lots, including David O’Callaghan of Yeomanstown Stud, who gave 180,000gns for the sale’s sole Dubawi yearling, while Ross Doyle picked up a 145,000gns Sea The Stars colt who will breeze from Willie Browne’s Mocklershill.
Taking a longer view – and time out from buying blue-blooded mares – was Michael Donohoe of BBA Ireland. He
spent 155,000gns on a No Nay Never colt who will race for Zhang Yuesheng from the yard of Karl Burke, but a more patient approach will be needed with a Ten Sovereigns filly who will race in Australia. Expat Annabel Neasham will train the filly, who was sold to Blandford Bloodstock’s Stuart Boman for 120,000gns.
Due to breeding time differences between the two hemispheres the filly will be six months younger than twoyear-olds in Australia, but in this case that was viewed as secondary to the purchase of a good horse. “You have to write off the juvenile year, but she is going to need time anyway,” said Boman.
64 THE OWNER BREEDER
Sales Circuit • By Carl Evans
TATTERSALLS TATTERSALLS Curtain comes down on a memorable year of sales Gay O’Callaghan: came away with the sole Dubawi on offer with an eye to breeze Tattersalls December Yearling Sale Top lots Sex/breeding Vendor Price (gns) Buyer F Sea The Stars - Swizzle Stick Whatton Manor Stud 260,000 Alex Elliott, agent C Dubawi – Fadhayyil Shadwell Estate Company Ltd 180,000 Yeomanstown Stud C No Nay Never - Lady Corsica The Castlebridge Consignment 155,000 BBA Ireland C Lope De Vega – Azanara The Castlebridge Consignment 150,000 Avenue Bloodstock C Sea The Stars – Sequilla Gestut Faehrhof 145,000 Peter & Ross Doyle Bloodstock Figures Year Sold Agg (gns) Average (gns) Median (gns) Top price (gns) 2022 130 4,501,500 34,627 22,000 260,000 2021 145 5,067,500 34,948 27,000 240,000 2020 122 3,986,300 32,675 20,000 300,000
This Sea The Stars sister to Fifty Stars will race for Valmont after selling for 260,000gns
Tattersalls December Foal Sale
Trade which simmered to start with came nicely to the boil at the third and most lucrative session of this four-day sale.
A Bated Breath filly and a colt by first-crop sire Mohaather gave the event a good start when selling for 80,000gns on the first day, although an additional 64 lots proved a little too much for the market and the clearance rate at what is the weakest session fell back 14 points to 70 per cent.
Day two saw three lots break the 200,000gns barrier, headed by a Havana Grey colt who was sold to pinhooker Philipp Stauffenberg for 250,000gns. The vendors were the stallion’s masters, the Harper family, of Whitsbury Manor Stud.
At the Friday session, the big guns lined up and a barrage of rockets underlined the demand for quality bloodstock, one that is currently being found in every tier of the industry. Turnover rose 18 per cent to just over 20m guineas while the average price gained 19 per cent at 110,495gns. If you have a decent mare and can get into the
right stallion there is a profit to be made.
Whitsbury Manor Stud was back on centre stage when trading a Kingman filly out of the mare Suelita for 1,000,000gns to the team which stands the sire at Juddmonte. Suelita, a
daughter of Dutch Art, had been bought by Chris Harper for just 21,500gns at the 2013 December Sale when a four-yearold with three wins to her name.
Since then she has been producing black type like a printing machine, her
TATTERSALLS TATTERSALLS ›› THE OWNER BREEDER 65 Tattersalls December Foal Sale Top lots Sex/breeding Vendor Price (gns) Buyer F Kingman – Suelita Whitsbury Manor Stud 1,000,000 Juddmonte Farms F Frankel - Sunny Again Mount Coote Stud 550,000 Moyglare Stud F Lope De Vega - Poet’s Vanity Langton Stud 500,000 Juddmonte Farms F Frankel – Awesometank Heatherwold Stud 500,000 Juddmonte Farms F Kingman - Burning Rules Selwood Bloodstock 425,000 Juddmonte Farms F Frankel - Mrs Gallagher New England Stud 425,000 Sumbe Figures Year Sold Agg (gns) Average (gns) Median (gns) Top price (gns) 2022 744 35,255,050 47,386 26,000 1,000,000 2021 734 31,301,500 42,645 25,000 1,800,000 2020 628 26,255,100 41,807 20,000 700,000
The Kingman half-sister to Chaldean sold for 1,000,000gns in front of a packed ring
Juddmonte’s purchases included this Frankel filly from Heatherwold Stud
Simon Mockridge: signed for four fillies on behalf of Juddmonte Farms
latest success being Chaldean, who carried Juddmonte colours to victory in the 2022 running of the Dewhurst Stakes. Another son, Group 2 winner Alkumait, stands at Castlefield Stud.
Fillies dominated the session and filled eight of the top-ten places. Juddmonte accounted for four of the octet, taking 500,000gns daughters of Lope De Vega (from Langton Stud) and Frankel (from Heatherwold Stud), plus a 425,000gns Kingman filly (from Selwood Bloodstock).
Tattersalls December Mares Sale
The Sceptre Sessions were devised by Tattersalls as a means of effectively showcasing the elite bloodstock catalogued and, as anticipated, an element of vitality and glamour was added to the event that helped contribute to a record trade, writes Nancy Sexton
“When we launched the Sceptre Sessions back in the summer our goal was to create a format which would allow us to showcase elite fillies and mares to the global audience which defines the Tattersalls December Sale,” wrote Edmond Mahony in his end-of-sale Chairman’s statement.
“The response from breeders and consignors to the new initiative was overwhelmingly positive, and this was widely recognised as an exceptional catalogue, but we could not have predicted the extraordinary atmosphere which enveloped Park Paddocks throughout a sale which has seen the record books completely rewritten.”
The records that Mahony alluded to were the aggregate of 80,831,200gns, which smashed the previous record of
Moyglare Stud Farm also gained one of the day’s finest jewels when paying 550,000gns for a Frankel filly who was knocked down to Fiona Craig. This involved another tale of a cheaplybought mare confounding logic, for the dam, Sunny Again, cost Mount Coote Stud just €15,000 at Arqana in December 2017. Having produced three stakes horses, Sunny Again is living up to her name.
The session also made a quiet nod in appreciation of the achievements of
breeder Sir Evelyn de Rothschild, who had died a few weeks earlier. Four foals bred at his Southcourt Stud and consigned by New England Stud went through the ring and all sold for six-figure sums.
Another note of pathos involved the final Galileo foal to go under the hammer, one of just 14 from the great stallion’s small last crop. Consigned by The Castlebridge Consignment, the youngster was sold to Jamie McCalmont for 400,000gns.
69,613,500gns set as far back as 2007, average of 117,147gns and median of 32,000gns. To cap it all, there were 11 seven-figure lots led by Jeff Smith’s brilliant filly Alcohol Free at 5,400,000gns. Bought by David Bowe on behalf of Smith’s Littleton Stud for just €40,000 as a Goffs November foal, the daughter of No Nay Never went on to win Group 1 races at two, three and four for Andrew Balding, namely the Cheveley Park Stud, Coronation Stakes, Sussex Stakes and July Cup.
As such, she was an odds-on choice
to smash through the million guinea mark but, even so, it is debatable how many onlookers within the packed sale ring that Tuesday evening expected to see the bidding open at 1,000,000gns. It was Australian owner-breeder Michael Sherrin who threw in that opening bid, but that mark was swiftly eclipsed as BBA Ireland’s Michael Donohoe, sitting with Zhang Yuesheng, locked horns with MV Magnier. In the end it was Donohoe who had the final say at 5,400,000gns, a bid that will see the filly race on for a partnership in Australia.
66 THE OWNER BREEDER Sales Circuit ››
Alcohol Free: multiple Group 1 winner commanded 5,400,000gns to race on in Australia
Michael Donohoe: BBA Ireland agent outbid MV Magnier for Alcohol Free
It was later revealed that Alcohol Free is to be trained by Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott with an eye on next season’s A$15m Everest at Randwick.
Similarly, BBA Ireland’s other seven-figure purchase Gan Teorainn is to also race on in Australia. Bought for 1,000,000gns out of Clare Manning’s Boherguy Stud draft, the daughter of Saxon Warrior was saddled by Jim Bolger to run second in the Prix Marcel Boussac.
With 39 bought for a total of 14,567,000gns, BBA Ireland wound up as the sale’s leading buyer by a wide margin.
On a particularly international evening of trading, Group 1 winner Saffron Beach has the Saudi Cup as her early-season aim following her sale to Prince Faisal bin Khalid bin Abdulaziz’s Najd Stud for 3,600,000gns. Najd representative Saad Al Mishriff outbid Japan’s Northern Farm for the filly, who was handled by Jane Chapple-Hyam to
win the 2021 Sun Chariot Stakes and last season’s Prix Rothschild.
There is also a chance that Prix de Flore heroine Tranquil Lady could be back in action next season. Bought by Godolphin through Anthony Stroud for 2,700,000gns, a four-year-old campaign wasn’t ruled out by her new connections in the aftermath of her sale. A dual Group 3 winner during 2022 for Joseph O’Brien, she also possesses significant residual value as a half-sister to the Group 1-winning globetrotter State Of Rest.
Godolphin’s expenditure amounted to 4,525,000gns during an evening that also saw the operation come away with the highlight of the 16-strong Normandie Stud dispersal in Love Is You at 1,400,000gns. The Listedwinning mare was sold in foal to St Mark’s Basilica by Newsells Park Stud on behalf of Philippa Cooper, who cited rising costs – notably stallion fees – as a contributory factor to the decision to disperse her stock.
A successful owner-breeder for over 25 years, Cooper took great pleasure in breeding middle-distance horses, an approach which bore fruit in 2021 when the Normandie-bred Hurricane Lane
won the St Leger, Grand Prix de Paris and Irish Derby.
Northern Farm may have come off second best on Saffron Beach but they made a successful play for The Platinum Queen, the first two-year-old filly in 44 years to win the Prix de l’Abbaye. Coolmore also reaffirmed the regard in which they hold the Derby by going to 1,800,000gns for Desert Berry, the dam of last year’s winner Desert Crown. Vendor Gary Robinson of Strawberry Fields Stud, which also bred and sold Desert Crown, admitted to having mixed feelings to selling the mare – “It definitely is a problem losing something like that from the stud,” he said – but took solace in the fact that he still owns plenty of the family.
It was also a memorable sale for Andy Lloyd of Hunscote Stud and Chris Humber as the vendor of stakes producer Archangel Gabriel and her Group 3-winning daughter Ville De Grace; while Archangel Gabriel topped Monday’s Sceptre Session on a bid of 800,000gns from Lloyd, buying out Humber, Ville De Grace shone even more brightly a day later when selling for 2,000,000gns to Lordship Stud, signing as One Agency.
THE OWNER BREEDER 67
Tranquil Lady: sold for 2,700,000gns, she could race on at four for Godolphin
Jane Chapple-Hyam shares a moment with her stable star Saffron Beach following her sale to Najd Stud representative Saad Al Mishriff
Desert Berry, dam of Derby hero Desert Crown, joined Coolmore on a bid of 1,900,000gns
Goffs November Foal and Breeding Stock Sales
“Sensational,” was Henry Beeby’s assessment of his company’s four-day sale of Flat-bred foals.
Goffs’ CEO was able to deliver further glowing adjectives after a further two days of broodmare selling, leading him to conclude that trade across both sales could only be “defined in the richest of superlatives”.
With more than 1,000 catalogued foals to choose from, buyers were not short of options and after two days of trading they were fully warmed up for day three’s cream of the crop, of which offspring by Kingman led the parade. Two colts and a filly by the Juddmonte sire headed the leaderboard, the pick being an Airlie Stud-consigned colt who was sold to Philipp Stauffenberg for €550,000. Bold Stauffenberg plans to reoffer the colt as a yearling, and while the German pinhooker has never been afraid to spend six-figure sums on foals, this was a big sum even by his standards
It will be fascinating to see how the colt fares at a yearling sale next year, but half-sister Skitter Scatter was a Group 1 winner at two, while two-year-old half-brother Victory Dance was a Listed winner for Godolphin in 2022 and could give the page a noteworthy update.
Tattersalls December Mares Sale
Juddmonte Farms, which has been a significant buyer at key sales in 2022, joined the clamour for Kingman stock when purchasing a €530,000 son of their superb sire offered by Roundhill Stud, while The Castlebridge
Consignment sold one of the sire’s fillies, who dropped the way of Japan’s Katsumi Yoshida for €460,000.
Other big sales during this session involved a €340,000 Wootton Bassett colt bought by Juddmonte and a
68 THE OWNER BREEDER
Price (gns) Buyer
Top lots Name/age/sex/breeding Vendor
Free 4 f No Nay Never - Plying Park House Stables 5,400,000 BBA Ireland
Beach - 4 f New Bay - Fallen Petals Jane Chapple-Hyam Racing 3,600,000 Najd Stud
Tranquil Lady 3 f Australia - Repose The Castlebridge Consignment 2,700,000 Godolphin
Ville De Grace 4 f Le Havre - Archangel Gabriel Norris Bloodstock 2,000,000 One Agency
Desert Berry 13 m Green Desert - Foreign Language Strawberry Fields Stud 1,900,000MV Magnier Love Is You 4 m Kingman - Fallen For You Newsells Park Stud Ltd 1,400,000Godolphin
Jumbly 3 f Gleneagles - Thistle Bird Barton Sales 1,250,000MV Magnier/Joseph O’Brien The Platinum Queen 2 f Cotai Glory - Thrilled Musley Bank Stables 1,200,000Katsumi Yoshida Gan Teorainn 2 f Saxon Warrior - Dance Troupe Boherguy Stud 1,000,000BBA Ireland La Petite Coco 4 f Ruler Of The World - La Petite VirginieAthassel House Stud 1,000,000Wertheimer & Frere Rosscarbery 4 f Sea The Stars - Rose Rized Athassel House Stud 1,000,000C Gordon-Watson
Sold Agg (gns) Average (gns) Median (gns) Top price
(gns) 2022 690 80,831,200 117,147 32,000 5,400,000 2021 788 62,412,700 79,204 26,000 2,200,000 2020 735 43,111,900 58,656 20,000 2,200,000
This son of Kingman was snapped up by Philipp Stauffenberg with an eye to pinhook
I was very impressed with the yearlings I saw by Land Force, I bought a lovely flly for 120,000gns who looked a real no nonsense, tough flly with a great attitude. If he continues to breed such good-looking stock I’m sure he will make a successful stallion, particularly with his outstanding pedigree.”
Angus Gold, Shadwell
“We have a very inspiring sharp looking Land Force who I bought at Doncaster for £82,000. He’s been very straight forward, and at this stage I couldn’t be more pleased. He has balance, a very fuid motion and a good mind.”
Clive Cox, Trainer
The Land Force I purchased in Book 2 for 60,000gns is a big, strong, dark bay who really flls the eye. He’s gone into training with Grant Tuer who is already waxing lyrical about him, let’s hope he’s as fast as his father!”
Alex Elliott, Agent
“Alastair and I bought three yearlings by Land Force this year for up to 60,000gns, he is getting very strong and precocious looking stock and his pedigree has so much class. I tried to buy a foal by him in December because I feel he has such a great chance.”
Ed Sackville, SackvilleDonald
“The Land Force colt we bought for £78,000 looked very athletic and had a big square set of quarters, he was a ‘Must Buy’ for us.”
Oliver St Lawrence on the Land Force x Basque Beauty yearling
“The Land Force colt I bought for 135,000gns was an outstanding physical and a beautiful mover, we felt he was one of the best looking colts in the whole of Book 2, the stallion must have a good chance next year.”
Federico Barberini, Agent
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L AND FORCE No Nay Never Fee: £5,000 1st Oct SLF with
ALL THE CREDENTIALS FOR A LEADING SIRE IN THE MAKING
€330,000 No Nay Never colt who joined Rockbank Bloodstock.
Tally-Ho Stud was the leading buyer of foals, gaining 19 for €1,429,000, while Stauffenberg bought six for an eye-catching €1,113,000 – interestingly he secured just one foal at the following week’s December Sale in Newmarket, although at 250,000gns it was not inconsequential.
The Castlebridge Consignment’s 35 sold lots at Goffs totalled €2,263,000 to take leading consignor honours, but credit to Des Leadon and Mariann Klay’s Swordlestown Little which turned over €700,000 with three sales, including the Wootton Bassett foal to Juddmonte and a filly by the same sire to Tally-Ho Stud for €280,000.
With 19 foals selling for €200,000 or more, trade soared ahead. Turnover of €29.5m was up 16 per cent, the average gained 15 per cent at €40,110, while the median rose nine per cent to €24,000. Of 917 lots, 737 sold at a clearance rate of 80 per cent.
The two-day broodmare sale became a procession for owner-breeder Zhang Yuesheng and his agent Michael Donohoe of BBA Ireland. Donohoe’s mission was to find suitable mates for Zhang’s stallion Lucky Vega, who stands at the Irish National Stud and whose oldest crop have just become yearlings.
Dermot Farrington signed for the ‘top lot’, three-year-old Group 2 winner Ladies Church who was knocked down for €970,000; it later transpired that she had not changed hands. As a result the four-year-old Galileo filly Aspiring took the number one spot when selling for €790,000 to Donohoe/Lucky Vega.
The Baroda Stud-consigned fouryear-old, carrying a Wootton Bassett
• It is one thing buying a filly foal for half a million euros, for if she fails to reach the racecourse she at least has broodmare prospects. It is another to buy a colt foal for that money, but if he trips over a twig while larking in a field, he can be given time, miss a year and race at three. Pinhookers have a much narrower time frame in which to operate, so credit to Philipp Stauffenberg, who invested €550,000 in a Kingman foal to pinhook at Goffs’ November Sale.
While he showed his usual cool following the purchase, he did say: “I will have to tell my staff we have quite a valuable thing there! We treat everything the same and he will be raised like all the others.”
If it comes off Stauffenberg will have raised the bar for foal-to-yearling pinhookers, but if it fails, well, he will probably try again, and with his usual elan.
foal around the ring, could boast of being a half-sister to Arc winner Danedream and from a family of black-type achievers.
Aspring was one of 18 lots purchased by Donohoe and the Lucky Vega Syndicate, which spent €5,215,000, nearly a third of the sale’s turnover. Goffs’ chief Beeby said in his close-ofsale statement: “While every bidder is important we must single out our great
supporter Mr Zhang,” and added: “We are lucky to have his support, and by ‘we’ I refer to the Irish bloodstock industry.”
Despite the breeding stock sale being reduced in size with 381 offered lots, 78 fewer than last year, it turned over €16.5m, which was up two per cent. The average price leapt 27 per cent to €55,560, while the median rose 41 per cent to €24,000.
70 THE OWNER BREEDER
Philipp Stauffenberg: came away with six foals worth a total of €1,113,000
Barry Mahon: signed for €870,000 worth of stock on behalf of Juddmonte Farms
Galileo mare Aspiring, a half-sister to Danedream, topped the Goffs November Mares Sale
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Breeding Stock Sale
Some big prices for fillies at last year’s edition of this sale were converted into subsequent notable triumphs on the racetrack, enhancing its image.
Yet the latest renewal exceeded all expectations, with a 38 per cent rise in turnover to €58m, a new record for the sale. Ten years ago that figure was €20m. Long days and cold weather made it a challenge, particularly for grooms and groundstaff, a fact acknowledged by Arqana directors Eric Hoyeau and Freddy Powell in their closing statement, but the prices were hot in the ring.
An additional 17 lots were offered at the latest edition, but that in no way
Goffs November Breeding Stock Sale
72 THE OWNER BREEDER Sales Circuit ››
Top lots Sex/breeding Vendor Price (€) Buyer
Kingman - Dane Street Airlie Stud 550,000 Stauffenberg Bloodstock
Kingman - Princess De Lune Roundhill Stud 530,000 Juddmonte Farms
Kingman – Assurance The Castlebridge Consignment
Bassett – Nisriyna Swordlestown Little
No Nay Never - Piece Of Paradise Rockfield Farm
Goffs November Foal Sale
Top lots Name/age/sex/breeding Vendor Price (€) Buyer Aspiring 4 m Galileo – Danedrop Baroda Stud 790,000 BBA Ireland/Lucky Vega Pleasant Dreams 3 m Galileo - Dixieland Kiss Grenane House Stud 630,000 BBA Ireland/Lucky Vega Eaves 4 m Galileo – Where Grenane House Stud 600,000 BBA Ireland/Lucky Vega Bocca Baciata 10 m Big Bad Bob – Sovana Kiltinan Castle Stud 530,000 BBA Ireland/Lucky Vega Yasmeen 10 m Sea The Stars – Wissal Derrinstown Stud 520,000 Barronstown Stud Figures Year Sold Agg (€) Average (€) Median (€) Top price (€) 2022 738 29,572,000 40,070 24,000 550,000 2021 732 25,576,300 34,940 22,000 550,000 2020 482 17,578,600 36,470 20,000 440,000 Figures Year Sold Agg (€) Average (€) Median (€) Top price (€) 2022 298 16,508,400 55,397 24,000 790,000 2021 370 16,209,300 43,809 17,000 825,000 2020 173 5,479,600 31,674 14,000 390,000
bid of €3.2 million
high-class Malavath ARQANA ››
Stud Farm struck the winning
explains the jump in the aggregate figure, nor the four points rise in clearance to 80 per cent. Sales of breeding stock will vary in quality from year to year depending on who is feeling like parting with their crown jewels, but a 27 per cent rise in the average to a record €76,757 and a 17 per cent increase in the median to €17,250 underlines demand for the goods on offer.
Saturday’s opening session generated turnover of €45.8m, which was higher than any previous staging of the sale in its entirety, and involved seven fillies or mares who made a million. Henri Bozo’s Ecurie des Monceaux headed consignors when turning over just shy of €10m, while BBA Ireland was the leading buyer, taking 46 horses for €9.2m
The grand dame of the sale proved to be Malavath, who was knocked down to Moyglare Stud Farm for €3.2m. Moyglare enjoyed a superb 2022 season with Kyprios’s total domination of top level staying races and Homeless Songs winning the Irish 1,000 Guineas – both horses are homebred – and Eva Maria Bucher-Haefner’s farm could have a good 2023 too, since Malavath will race on at four. Runner-up in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies’ Turf at two and a Group 3 winner at three, she will move to the USA to seek a prized Grade 1 win with Christophe Clement. A breeze-up graduate bought for €120,000, she raced prior to this sale for Barbara Keller, David Redvers and Everest Racing.
Sweet Lady, who won this year’s Prix Vermeille, was sold to Kentucky-based Claiborne Farm, while Burgarita, who got to within half a length of Sweet Lady
in the latest running of the Prix Corrida, was sold to Godolphin for €1.7m, a fine upgrade on her yearling valuation of 95,000gns.
Teryua Yoshida of Japan’s Shadai Farm gained three-year-old Hello You with a bid of €1.55m, some 30 lots after her dam, Lucrece, had been sold for €710,000 to BBA Ireland. Yoshida’s brother, Katsumi, gained another millionairess, Thunder Drum, for €1.1m, while Hubie de Burgh and James Harron picked up Classic-placed Times Square with a bid of €1.25m. She will race on in Australia.
A round €1m completed the sevenfigure sales and was given for Oscula, a
triple Group 3 winner for George Boughey’s stable and sold to Prince Faisal en route to a mating with his Mishriff, who will stand in France in 2023.
This phenomenal day’s trading meant many buyers stayed on to secure horses at the three subsequent sessions, and Australian agents were particularly active for fillies who were bought to race on. The final day saw the dispersal of the Head family’s bloodstock from Haras du Quesnay and included two mares, Theoricienne and Treasure, who were bought for a combined €82,000 by Jeremy Brummitt to visit new sire Stradivarius.
74 THE OWNER BREEDER
ARQANA Arqana December Breeding Stock Sale Top lots Name/age/sex/breeding Vendor Price (€) Buyer Malavath 3 f Mehmas – Fidaaha Monceaux 3,200,000 Moyglare Stud Farm Sweet Lady 3 f Lope De Vega - High Heel Sneakers Graffard Racing 2,050,000 Claiborne Farm Burgarita 4 f Sea The Stars – Angelita Baroda Stud 1,700,000 Godolphin Hello You 3 f Invincible Spirit – Lucrece Monceaux 1,550,000 Shadai Farm Times Square 3 f Zarak - See You Always Ferland 1,250,000 De Burgh/James Harron Figures Year Sold Agg (€) Average (€) Median (€) Top price (€) 2022 762 58,418,500 76,842 17,500 3,200,000 2021 704 42,007,700 60,314 15,000 3,000,000 2020 557 25,284,500 45,394 16,000 750,000 ›› ››
Prix Vermeille heroine Sweet Lady headed to Kentucky on a €2.05 million bid
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Arqana Autumn and November Yearling Sales
A busy period in Arqana’s Deauville sales ring involved the one-day November Sale of Flat-bred yearlings, followed by the extended Autumn Sale of horses-in-training off the Flat, jumps-bred yearlings and two-year-old stores. That cocktail was followed by jumping-bred breeding stock.
International demand for French bloodlines and racehorses – particularly from buyers in Australia – was evident once again and resulted in a new record price for the sale of €600,000, the sum given for three-year-old triple winner and Listed-placed colt Carini from the Aga Khan’s 12-strong draft.
This was not the only new high mark, for the final day saw a Doctor Dino colt foal realise €160,000, which was the best achieved by a weanling at Arqana.
If the number of in-training Flat horses exported out of Britain is causing some disquiet in the training ranks it might give some comfort to know France is not immune from the trend. Carini, a three-year-old colt by Siyouni from the stable of Francis Graffard, was snapped up by Australian interests represented by Louis Le Metayer’s Astute Bloodstock and Equos Racing’s Nicolas Lefevre.
Another member of the Graffard/Aga Khan consignment, three-year-old gelding Shaiyhar, was also booked for a flight south after being knocked down to Sydney-based agent Guy Mulcaster, whose €300,000 offer secured the son of Camelot for Victoria-based trainers Trent Busuttin and Natalie Young. Charlie Swan and Harold Kirk were but two potential buyers who had to give best to the Australians.
Johnny McKeever secured €205,000 Garachio from the stable of Carlos Laffon-Parias for another down under client, but Harold Kirk and Pierre Boulard nailed a smart prospect for Willie Mullins with their purchase of Frankel’s son Gaucher for €260,000. Another Irish jump trainer, Tony Martin, gave €240,000 for Zanndabad, a ready-to-roll gelding from the Aga Khan.
Saudi Arabia got in on the act when placing a €320,000 offer through Michael Donohoe of BBA Ireland for Djo Francais, a Group 3 winner for French champion trainer Jean-Claude Rouget.
When the action turned to jumping stock on day two, a yearling colt from the first crop of Haras d’Etreham’s Goliath Du Berlais headed trade when selling to trainer David Satalia for €130,000, and that price was bettered on the third day when yearlings by Doctor Dino
dominated proceedings. One of his daughters was sold to Paul Basquin of Saubouas Bloodstock for €200,000, while one of her paternal half-sisters made €150,000 to an offer by Antonin Pelsy’s Spincourt Bloodstock.
On the final day of jumps-bred foals and mares, it was Doctor Dino again when one of his foals made €160,000 to a bid from Thierry Cypres on behalf of racehorse owner Sofiane Benaroussi, although the final session’s leading price was one of €190,000 for three-year-old filly La Boetie, a Grade 3-winning hurdler for David Cottin.
Despite her youth La Boetie has shown enough to warrant a place at stud, said buyer Guy Petit, who was acting for J K Equine.
Arqana made no comparisons with last year’s sale due to this year’s event being much larger, but of the 675 lots offered 515 (76 per cent) found new homes at an average price of just over €28,000. Turnover reached €14.5m.
Turnover at the one-day auction of Flat-bred yearlings held two days before the Autumn Sale dropped below seven figures, but that was down to a muchreduced catalogue which saw 137 lots offered, 70 fewer than last year.
The average and median figures did not suffer, matching results achieved last year, while the clearance rate improved three points to 83 per cent through sales of 115 horses.
This is far from Arqana’s most important auction of yearlings, as indicated by a top price of €27,000 for a Toronado filly, but it suits breeders that foal a horse who would suffer in grander company – and it also appeals to buyers from Eastern European racing nations.
Czech trainer Zdeno Koplik was among their number and he gave €24,000 for a Ruler Of The World colt, while Chantilly trainer Josephine Soudan and Equos Racing’s Lefevre purchased the aforementioned Toronado filly who headed trade.
76 THE OWNER BREEDER
A sale record of €600,000 was paid by Australian interests for the Listed-placed Carini
ARQANA ARQANA ››
Group 3 winner Djo Francais sold for €320,000 to BBA Ireland to race in Saudi Arabia
STANDINGATOAKGROVESTUD OakgroveEstate,StArvans,Chepstow,Monmouthshire,NP166EH ForNominationsContact: DavidHilton:07595951248 ● Email:email@example.com bay2008,16.1hhbyDubawi-Kazeem(Darshaan) ◆ Four-timeGr.1winnerbyDUBAWI WonGr.1 TattersallsGoldCup(twice), Gr.1 Coral-Eclipse, Gr.1 PrinceOfWales'sStakes ◆ JointChampionOlderHorseinEuropein2013 (9.5f-10.5f) ◆ Timeformrated128 inthreeconsecutiveseasons ◆ Sireof Group1 winner ASPETAR,Stakes-winning 3yomiler USAK and Stakes-winning 2yos HARPER (alsoPrixduRanelagh LR in2022),and SAINTLAWRENCE (also3rdPalaceHouseS. Gr.3 in2022),and Stakes-placedPrecisely (3winsand2ndGilliesFillies’S. LR in2022) ◆ Four-timewinning3yo PERSIANROYAL wassoldfor 450,000gns atthe TattersallsAutumnHorsesinTrainingSalein2022 ◆ Sireofthewinnersofover£1.3million Group1Sire! 2023FEEPRIVATE CallDavidHilton 07595951248 AlKazeem Group1winnerASPETAR ALKAZEEMwinstheGr.1TattersallsGoldCupfora secondtimebeatingFascinatingRockandPostponed LEADINGBRITISHSIRES OF3YOSIN2022 by%winnerstorunnersinEurope 1ALKAZEEM75 2FRANKEL64 3DUBAWI61 FARHH61 5PIVOTAL60 6KINGMAN59 7ACLAIM55 8NATHANIEL54 OASISDREAM54 8+runners HyperionPromotionsLtd.Resultsto 7/12/22
Goffs December NH Sale
A one-day sale as recently as ten years ago, this auction expanded by another session at the latest rendition and so became one of four days.
Vendors seemed to like the format, for trading was completed by 5pm each day, which at the darkest and often coldest time of year removes one challenge. Yards empty of viewers late at night do no-one any favours, least of all the grooms, and while bedtime finishes cannot always be avoided, they are rarely liked.
Buyers still had plenty of time to assess and pursue horses, with the result that turnover rose 22 per cent to just over €8.7m. An additional 24 lots were offered, but the market was hungry enough to push the clearance
78 THE OWNER BREEDER
November Yearling Sale Top lots Sex/breeding Vendor Price (€) Buyer F Toronado – Valombreuse Haras d’Ellon 27,000 Equos Racing/Josephine Soudan C Ruler Of The World - Ababeel Castillon 24,000 Zdeno Koplik C City Light - Sea Life Auge 18,000 Gerard Larrieu Arqana November In-training/Jump-bred stock Sale Top lots Name/age/sex/breeding Vendor Price (€) Buyer Carini 3 g Siyouni – Candarliya Aga Khan Studs 600,000 Equos Racing/Astute Bloodstock Djo Francais 4 c Intello – Nazlia Jean-Claude Rouget 320,000 BBA Ireland Shaiyhar 3 g Camelot – Sharliyna Aga Khan Studs 300,000 Busuttin & Young Gaucher 3 c Frankel - Left Hand Wertheimer & Frere 260,000 Boulard/Kirk/Mullins Weston 3 g Soldier Hollow – Wilddrossel Haras d’Ombreville 240,000 Gordon Elliott Zanndabad 3 g Iffraaj – Zanoubiya Aga Khan Studs 240,000 Tony Martin Niagaro 3 c Adlerflug – Nevada Haras d’Ombreville 240,000 Marco Bozzi Figures Year Sold Agg (€) Average (€) Median (€) Top price (€) 2022 118 750,800 6,352 5,000 27,000 2021 168 1,061,500 6,332 5,000 30,000 2020 158 1,082,000 6,981 5,000 57,000
Year Sold Agg (€) Average (€) Median (€) Top price (€) 2022 515 14,695,000 28,217 15,000 600,000 2021 294 9,242,300 31,514 20,000 315,000 2020 347 8,215,300 23,859 14,000 200,000 Sales Circuit
GOFFS ›› ››
High-class hurdler Concertista joined Dash Grange Stud on a bid of €220,000
BearstoneStud Tel:07974948755or01630647197 ● www.bearstonestud.co.uk Timeformrated121: “well-madehorse:smartperformer” Top-classsprinter withasire’s pedigree. Successfulfirstcropsire including WashingtonHeights(earningsof over£75,000andhd2ndin valuablesalesracetoaListed winnerand3rdinListedRedcar 2yoTrophy). ByZoffany sireof89blacktype horsesand5Group1winners fromhisEuropeancrops. THEONLYSONOF ZOFFANYATSTUDINTHEUK Fee: £3,000Oct1stSLF WINABONUSOFUPTO£20,000 ● ChooseaBritishStallion TimeformRated113at2years LEADINGBRITISH&IRISH SECONDCROPSIRES by%lifetimewinnerstorunnersinGB&IRE Sire %W/R 1MATTMU50 DECORATEDKNIGHT50 3ACLAIM 49 4CHURCHILL 47 COTAIGLORY 47 6ULYSSES 44 7POSTPONED 38 8ARDAD 36 PROFITABLE 36 10GALILEOGOLD35 5+runners StatisticsbyHyperionPromotionsLtdto3/10/22 SIGNIFICANTLY UPGRADINGHISMARES Fee: £2,000Oct1stSLF
rate up two points to 69 per cent, while the average gained 13 per cent at €18,192 and the median added ten per cent at €11,000.
It is unusual for one stallion to dominate a four-day sale, but Grange Stud’s Coolmore sire Walk In The Park pulled it off at this sale as buyers went into overdrive for his foals. They included a €155,000 belter whose sale was a National Hunt foal record at Goffs and a moment of pride for his breeders, Justin and Jackie Owens of Mountarmstrong Stud in County Kildare.
Not that they planned the mating. Twelve months earlier they had made headlines at the same sale when buying the €260,000 top-lot Shattered Love, a Grade 2 winner and Grade 1-placed mare carrying her first foal.
The Owens’ investment looks cute now, for the foal in utero was the same one who lit up the ring 12 months later when selling to Gerry Aherne. He works on Coolmore’s nominations desk and runs Prospect Stud in County Tipperary, but he was acting for a syndicate of friends who will race the colt.
Aherne also bought other colts by Walk In The Park for €88,000 from Tom and Siobhan Meagher’s Monanore Stables and €82,000 from the Mariga family’s Coolmara Stables – the Marigas later reinvested with some choice mare purchases headed by Grangee for €120,000. Another foal buyer, Richard Rohan, secured a €100,000 Walk In The Park colt from Pa Doyle’s Galbertstown Stables.
Beginners’ luck is a curious phenomenon which most of us experience in some form or other, and was evident in the sale of a No Risk At All colt consigned by Yorton. This involved a first foal-selling experience for Richard Burton, one of the finest amateurs to cross a fence and four times Britain’s champion point-to-point rider. Burton, from Shropshire, had bought the mare Mrs Lovett for €25,000 via brother-in-law Will Kinsey, and the foal she carried proved a first-day session topper when selling for €85,000 to Peter Molony.
The sale‘s top price arrived on the final day when mares joined the concluding batch of foals to go under the hammer. Concertista, an eight-year-
old mare by Nathaniel and a multiple Grade 2 winner and Grade 1-placed for Willie Mullins, was sold to Jayne McGivern of Dash Grange Stud for €220,000.
The mare’s first cover will be McGivern’s Golden Horn, who stands at Simon Sweeting’s Overbury Stud. News that the coveted mare would be heading to his farm for a rendezvous with the Derby and Arc winner will have been some comfort for Sweeting, who earlier in the day had broken news of the death of his Kayf Tara, the 28-year-old pensioned multiple British champion jump sire. His death came just days after Edwardstone had inched closer to becoming his greatest offspring with a
80 THE OWNER BREEDER
resounding Tingle Creek Chase triumph.
Goffs December NH Sale Top lots Name/age/sex/breeding Vendor Price (€) Buyer Concertista 8 m Nathaniel – Zagzig Simon Munir & Issac Souede/Rathmore Stud 220,000 Dash Grange Stud Royal Kahala 7 m Flemensfirth - Leading Lady Winning Ways Starlet Syndicate from Clonbonny Stud 180,000 Robert McCarthy C Walk In The Park - Shattered Love Mount Armstrong Kildare 155,000 Gerry Aherne Grangee 6 m Great Pretender - Quelle Mome Tinnakill House 120,000 Coolmara Stables Crackle 5 m Sholokhov - Burn And Turn Old Rectory Stud/Stephen Kemble 110,000 Coolmara Stables Figures Year Sold Agg (€) Average (€) Median (€) Top price (€) 2022 480 8,732,300 18,192 11,000 220,000 2021 445 7,184,300 16,144 10,000 260,000 2020 326 5,219,100 16,010 10,000 530,000 ››
Justin and Jackie Owens pictured with the Walk In The Park colt out of Shattered Love GOFFS
Goffs UK Tingle Creek P2P Sale
Embracing its share of the market for young point-to-pointers, Goffs UK staged its first sale at Sandown Park after racing on the Tingle Creek card.
The winner’s enclosure with its banked terrace proved an ideal venue in which to hold the auction, and while stabling limitations restricted the catalogue to 19 lots, the 16 who went under the hammer all found a buyer. It also proved a welcome time-killer for racegoers who opted to view the action rather than sit in a traffic jam from the car park onto Esher High Street.
Dotted among them were the serious players – trainers, agents and owners –who had come to do business, and who gave the sale a cracking start.
Turnover of £1,985,000 at an average of £124,063 delighted the Goffs UK
team, who were keen to stress the support given by Sandown had been above and beyond their expectations. The proximity of stables, viewing areas and sales ring also gained a thumbs-up from buyers and sellers, and meant trainers could dip into the lots on offer between races.
The top two horses, both consigned by Donnchadh Doyle of County Wexford’s Monbeg Stables, were four-year-old Irish pointers with recent form. Brook Bay was sold for £380,000 to Martin Tedham, whose Wasdell Properties sponsors Jonjo O’Neill’s yard, while Flash In The Park made £350,000 to a bid from trainer Ben Pauling. He was acting for Andrew Megson, whose horses races in the name of The Megsons.
Harold Kirk picked up Cleatus Poolaw
Goffs UK Tingle Creek P2P Sale
for Willie Mullins’ stable with a bid of £150,000, a lovely upturn on the €30,000 paid for him as a store by Northern Ireland trainer Mark O’Hare. Another sum of £150,000 secured the filly Annie K, who was sold to Frodon’s owner Paul Vogt and who will be trained by Paul Nicholls.
Twelve months ago, Goffs UK staged a similar sale at Yorton Farm in north Wales, followed 24 hours later by a low-key December Sale in Doncaster. The latter event was dropped from the schedule in 2022, but the Sandown sale’s success suggests it will become a regular feature in the calendar.
After a grim year when Covid struck in 2020, Goffs UK has come back strongly, and the Tingle Creek Sale carried annual turnover to just over £50m, up nearly £7m on last year.
Top lots Name/age/sex/breeding Vendor Price (£) Buyer Brook Bay 4 g Affinisea - Orchid Bay Monbeg Stables (Donnchadh Doyle) 380,000 Wasdell Properties/JJ O’Neill Flash In The Park 4 g Walk In The Park - Mrs Masters Monbeg Stables (Donnchadh Doyle) 350,000 Ben Pauling Annie K 5 m Valirann - Anno Whyte Grottowell Stables 170,000 Tom Malone/Paul Nicholls Cleatus Poolaw 4 g Clovis Du Berlais – Farewellatmidnight Ballooleymore Stables 150,000 Harold Kirk/WP Mullins Southoftheborder 4 g Leading Light - Dante’s QueenFiddaun Farm 145,000 Highflyer Bloodstock Figures Year Sold Agg (£) Average (£) Median (£) Top price (£) 2022 16 1,985,000 124,063 90,000 380,000 THE OWNER BREEDER 81
The sale of Brook Bay for £380,000 capped a memorable evening for vendor Donnchadh Doyle
GOFFS UK/SARAH FARNSWORTH
Tattersalls Cheltenham December Sale
Another successful post-racing sale at Cheltenham was dominated by trainer Gordon Elliott and his clients.
A familiar face and buyer at sales of pointers and bumper horses, Elliott went into overdrive on this occasion when securing seven lots for just over £1m, a haul which included the top lot and four of the six top-priced horses. Beating Willie Mullins to the title of Ireland’s champion jump trainer is like attempting Mount Everest in boxer shorts, but no-one seems to have told Elliott.
He is a phenomenon, another from the hard-to-fathom mould of sporting restlessness, but with the all-important backing of clients who trust in his powers. Very few left him following that one well-documented error, for which he paid dearly, and he has powered back.
The pick of his purchases on this occasion was What’s Up Darling, a five-year-old son of Shirocco who had made a winning debut in an Irish point-to-point five days before his ring appearance. Knocked down for £280,000, he was offered by his owner-trainer John Costello, a member of the famous family of County Clare bloodstock traders, and who had bought What’s Up Darling as a foal from Billy Mangan.
What’s Up Darling’s new owner was undisclosed, but another Elliott patron, Dave Page’s KTDA Racing, will campaign Boston Town, a point-to-point winner at Tinahely in November. Mouse O’Ryan, Elliott’s ‘assistant’, lowered the hammer for this one with a bid of £200,000, following which Page, who lives in Sussex, said: “I’ve been around a lot of racing yards, and Gordon and Mouse are
so enthusiastic and the facilities are second to none.”
Finishing second at Corbeagh House five days before the sale did not put Elliott off Rainbow Trail, who was bought for £220,000, while David Minton ensured at least one high-profile horse would join a British trainer when his offer of £200,000 secured recent winner Shanagh Bob for Nicky Henderson. This was a mighty result for father-and-son team John and Chris O’Donovan from Cork, who bought Shanagh Bob for €10,000 at Tattersalls Ireland’s August Sale in 2021.
British stallion masters gained the top two female horses, with Simon Davies of
DahlBury buying five-year-old Ah Whisht for £145,000 and Jayne McGivern of Dash Grange Stud gaining the passport for three-year-old bumper winner Kutaiba with a bid of £160,000.
At £280,000, top lot What’s Up Darling would not have made the top five at this sale in 2021, when record turnover of £5.5m was achieved after 66 lots walked the ring and some big prices were paid. The gluttony of that event was possibly the result of a post-Covid bottleneck in the supply line, and with a more typical 48 horses on offer at the latest edition, turnover was pulled down to just over £3.4m at an average of £90,342 and median of £67,500.
• When the takings from Tattersalls Cheltenham’s December Sale was added to previous auctions at the venue, turnover for the year came to a new high of £19,797,000.
That was achieved at six auctions, which will become seven again next year when the May Sale returns to the ‘home of jump racing’. The most recent edition of that auction took place at Tattersalls’ Park Paddocks in Newmarket, where 56 lots achieved turnover of just over £2.8m with a top price of £310,000.
• British point-to-point trainers with a commercial eye are playing catch-up with their counterparts in Ireland but still achieving some very good results.
Their biggest disadvantage is the lack of quality four- and five-year-olds, which can lead to small-field races. That was certainly true in the spring of 2022 when dry weather and quick ground was an understandable reason not to run.
However, what is becoming clear on both sides of the Irish Sea is that a horse can finish second or third in a maiden point-to-point and still sell for a profit.
Warwickshire trainer Tom Ellis took four-year-old Man Of My Dreams to the Tattersalls Cheltenham December Sale and was happy to receive £100,000 from Highflyer Bloodstock for a horse he had bought as a store for £40,000. Man Of My Dreams, an imposing youngster who can only improve with time, had finished second in a very decent maiden point 12 days earlier behind a smartlooking rival.
“He might have made more if he had won, but I’m happy with that,” said Ellis. Those words are worth considering when trainers are being cagey about where and when to run a sales horse.
82 THE OWNER BREEDER
Tattersalls Cheltenham December Sale Top lots Name/age/sex/breeding Vendor Price (£) Buyer What’s Up Darling 5 g Shirocco - Carries Darling Fenloe House (John Costello) 280,000 Gordon Elliott Racing Rainbow Trail 4 g Davidoff – Amulet Monbeg Stables (Donnchadh Doyle) 220,000 Aidan O’Ryan / Gordon Elliott Boston Town 4 g Flemensfirth - Queen Of Mantua Milestone Stables (Colin Bowe) 200,000 Aidan O’Ryan / Gordon Elliott Shanagh Bob 4 g Mahler - Exit Bob John O’Donovan 200,000 Highflyer Bloodstock Simple Getaway 4 g Getaway - Simple Sums Monbeg Stables (Donnchadh Doyle) 180,000 Gwent Holdings Figures Year Sold Agg (£) Average (£) Median (£) Top price (£) 2022 38 3,433,000 90,342 67,500 280,000 2021 58 5,584,000 96,276 65,000 385,000 2020 32 2,378,000 74,313 47,500 430,000
STALLION PARADES PLANTEUR, BANGKOK AND WALZERTAKT WILL BE PARADING AT THE GOFFS UK JANUARY SALE ON 24TH JANUARY, AND AT THE CHELTENHAM FESTIVAL TRIALS DAY ON 28TH JANUARY 2023. A BRAND PASSIONATE ABOUT THE GREAT BRITISH THOROUGHBRED Concessions available HIGH-CLASS STAYER BY MONTJEU Fee: £2,500 1st October FFR WON/PLACED IN 5 STAKES RACES BY A LEADING NH INFLUENCE IN MONTJEU Plus a half-brother to 4 Group horses including German Derby winner Wiener Walzer,
of Grade 1 winner Adagio. Bred on the same cross as Camelot. FIRST WINNERS PROVING GREAT PROSPECTS Realising up to €195,000 at the sales. GR.1 SIRE OF CHAMPION STAYER TRUESHAN Fee: £4,000 1st October FFR STAKES PRODUCER ON THE FLAT, OVER HURDLES & JUMPS Inc. dual Gr.1 winner Trueshan, dual Gr.2 Chase winner Gran Diose & Gr.2 Hurdle winner Edidindo. 56% WINNERS TO RUNNERS HIGHEST EARNING SON OF DANEHILL DANCER Gr.1 winner & won/placed in 12 Stakes races. PATERNAL HALF-BROTHER TO THE LATE JEREMY, A LEADING NH SIRE WELL BRED, TOUGH & CONSISTENT STAKES WINNER Fee: £3,000 1st October FFR WON/PLACED IN 8 STAKES RACES OUTSTANDING PEDIGREE
had a heart like a
Alastair Donald, King Power Chapel Stud Ltd Chapel Lane, Bransford, Worcestershire WR6 5JQ 01452 717 342 chapelstud.co.uk Roisin Close 07738 279 071 roisin@ chapelstud.co.uk PLANTEUR BANGKOK WALZERTAKT HELLVELYN INDIAN HAVEN Tina Dawson 07776 165854 tina.dawson@ tdbloodstock.com
Half-brother to 6
horses including 2022 Gr.2 winning 2yo The Foxes, descending from the legendary Fall Aspen. “He
lion, and was a beautiful athlete with a wonderful pedigree, all great qualities for him to be a successful stallion.”
Surge in demand for highquality breeding stock
Positive headline sales figures often disguise a malaise elsewhere in the bloodstock marketplace, but that is not a claim that can be laid at Tattersalls’ door after their recordingbreaking December Mare Sale. Its aggregate of 80,831,200gns and average of 117,147gns simply blew the previous best numbers out of the water. For the record the previous best aggregate of 69,613,500gns was achieved in 2007, when five mares sold for three million guineas or more, and the best average of 101,208gns was five years ago.
This year, everyone benefitted from the surge in demand for high quality breeding stock and buyers in every sector were forced to adjust their valuations accordingly. Money flowed down and lifted all sectors of the market. As the top ten per cent average price swelled by 63%, it ensured that all other segments also benefitted to the tune of 39%, 23%, 24%, 25%, 30%, 32%, 35%, 16% and 18% for each subsequent decile. Tattersalls have indeed set a very high bar for future versions of this sale.
Goffs, too, had a very successful 2022 version of its own breeding stock sale, the total revenue of €16.2 million creating substantial increases in average price throughout all deciles of
St Mark’s Basilica: returned a covering sire average in excess of £500,000
the market, ranging from 18% to 46%.
And what about Arqana last month? Not only did it stage its highest grossing sale ever with record revenues of €58.4m – comfortably ahead of last year’s €42m – it also posted its highest ever price in the €3.2m paid by Moyglare Stud Farm for Mehmas’s daughter Malavath.
Given this exaggerated demand for prime breeding stock from around the world at these three venues, the key relationship between a mare’s price and the cost of the nomination to put her in foal should have been improved too. But there is still a claim to be made that far too many mares are being overcovered. In a booming market, why should only 27% of the 1,029 in-foal mares at the three main auctions bring a price that is three times the advertised nomination fee for the foal they are carrying?
More sobering is the fact that 30% of the in-foal mares sold at Tattersalls, Goffs and Arqana this year made less than their covering sires’ nomination fee. That is a salutary lesson for breeders and one that must always be borne in mind when planning future matings. It is a direct consequence of ever more mares visiting expensive stallions, something which has been the trend over the past five seasons or so. Still, one person’s loss is another’s gain and there are quite a few investors out there that have bagged not just a future foal or yearling to sell at a knock-down price, but a broodmare as well.
For the record, there was only one covering sire with a 100% record when
84 THE OWNER BREEDER Dr Statz
560,000gns mare Maurimo was among those sold in foal to Lope De Vega
it came to the three-times-fee general rule and that was Coolmore’s Sottsass. The average price paid for his five in-foal mares, at £184,800, wasn’t the highest by any means but the mares were carrying foals conceived at just €25,000.
The sire who topped the three sales by average price was Nathaniel, simply by dint of being the covering sire of MV Magnier’s 1,900,000-guinea purchase Desert Berry, the dam of Nathaniel’s Derby-winning son Desert Crown.
The leading sire with five or more in-foal mares sold this autumn was Frankel. His average price of £599,535 was just about three times his fee, but the buyers of Oasis Dream’s daughter Atone, from a fabulous Juddmonte family, at 300,000gns, will have felt like they got a bargain, as will the buyers of the €300,000 High Chaparral mare Anabasis at Arqana. Overall, four of the seven in foal to Frankel made three times the covering fee.
Coolmore’s first-season covering sire St Mark’s Basilica was also extremely popular, his seven in-foal mares bringing an average price £513,405,
nine times his opening asking price of €65,000. Unsurprisingly, five of the seven brought excellent returns for their vendors, headed by the 1,400,000 guineas for the lightly raced Listedwinning Love Is You by Kingman, part of the Normandie Stud dispersal.
His one disappointing return was Home Sweet Aspen at Goffs. This American Grade 1 winner by Candy Ride hasn’t struck gold yet with several US-bred foals, but she could turn out to be a bargain at only €49,000.
St Mark’s Basilica’s sire Siyouni produced a decent return on his €150,000 covering fee, with all six of his in-foal mares recouping the nomination fee and four bringing the ideal three-times fee price. The star of his seven was the Montjeu mare Let’s Misbehave, who sold for €920,000 to BBA Ireland.
John Boyce cracks the code
COVERING SIRES AT GOFFS, TATTERSALLS AND ARQANA BREEDING STOCK SALES RANKED BY AVERAGE PRICE (5+ SOLD)
Sire Sold Fee £ High £ Avg £ Price x Fee>Fee 3xFee %
FRANKEL 7 200,000 971,250 599,535 3.0 7 4 57.1
*ST MARK’S BASILICA 7 57,057 1,470,000 513,405 9.0 6 5 71.4
SIYOUNI 6 131,669 787,809 472,373 3.6 6 4 66.7
WOOTTON BASSETT 15 131,669 792,090 458,525 3.5 14 9 60.0
NO NAY NEVER 7 109,724 609,000 354,964 3.2 7 5 71.4
LOPE DE VEGA 6 109,724 588,000 298,520 2.7 5 2 33.3
*PALACE PIER 7 55,000 446,250 280,982 5.1 7 5 71.4
NIGHT OF THUNDER 8 65,835 452,191 258,907 3.9 8 5 62.5
SEA THE STARS 5 131,669 446,250 254,021 1.9 4 1 20.0
ZARAK 12 21,945 787,500 198,579 9.0 12 9 75.0
SOTTSASS 5 21,945 341,250 184,800 8.4 5 5 100.0
CAMELOT 8 65,835 428,157 177,940 2.7 7 3 37.5
TOO DARN HOT 6 45,000 525,000 173,209 3.8 5 3 50.0
MEHMAS 13 43,890 460,887 160,656 3.7 11 7 53.8
STARSPANGLEDBANNER 10 30,723 547,847 142,920 4.7 9 5 50.0
NEW BAY 10 32,917 420,000 136,292 4.1 10 5 50.0
PINATUBO 7 35,000 577,500 134,331 3.8 5 2 28.6
TERRITORIES 5 10,000 525,000 111,327 11.1 3 1 20.0
DARK ANGEL 15 52,668 283,500 106,345 2.0 11 4 26.7
OASIS DREAM 13 20,000 356,535 91,247 4.6 10 7 53.8
SEA THE MOON 17 25,000 308,273 80,584 3.2 13 6 35.3
BATED BREATH 12 15,000 315,000 75,143 5.0 11 7 58.3
ZOUSTAR 13 25,000 210,000 71,259 2.9 10 4 30.8
AUSTRALIA 8 30,723 388,500 69,903 2.3 4 1 12.5
INVINCIBLE SPIRIT 9 52,668 141,750 69,134 1.3 7 - -
SAXON WARRIOR 11 17,556 210,000 68,206 3.9 11 7 63.6
SHOWCASING 14 45,000 126,000 65,398 1.5 10 -PERSIAN KING 13 26,334 299,710 63,775 2.4 9 2 15.4
*SPACE BLUES 14 15,361 183,750 59,984 3.9 11 7 50.0
MASAR 9 14,000 194,250 59,150 4.2 7 5 55.6
There were plenty in foal to Coolmore’s Wootton Bassett put through the ring, his 15 generating an average price of £458,525. Given that he is getting access to ever more Galileo mares, the broodmare sire of his National Stakes hero Al Riffa, it was no surprise that nine of his offerings were mares by the great sire, while one more was by his son Teofilo and another by his half-brother Sea The Stars. His four top-priced mares were all by Galileo, including the Arqana duo Glinting (€925,000) and One Way (€870,000). These mares are from a stellar book – his first at €150,000 – and one that contained more elite mares than any other European stallion this year.
There is no question that the recent increase in Lope De Vega’s fee to
€125,000 will put pressure on his commerciality. The Ballylinch Stud stallion has always been among the most lucrative sires at the sales as he rose through the fee ranks. Now in the big league, breeders will need to be sure to send him mares worthy of his fee. Five of the mares in foal to him sold for more than their fee and three of the six made triple their conception fee, led by the 560,000gns Maurimo, a winning Kingman half-sister to Group 1 winners Star Catcher and Cannock Chase. No Nay Never also did well, with five of his seven making three times the fee.
Finally, a special mention must go to Haras de Bonneval’s Zarak, whose €25,000 fee was eclipsed by all 12 of the mares carrying to him, with nine meeting the three-times-fee standard.
THE OWNER BREEDER 85
average of £599,535 was just about three times his fee”
Outstrip support hits gold with Melbourne Cup hero
One of the small pleasures of the hectic autumn schedule is the publication of each stallion farm’s roster for the coming year. There’s the sharp intake of breath at the substantial price rises, coupled with the welcome confirmation of the additions to the stallion ranks.
At the same time these lists often reveal a few untold stories. Some names from previous years won’t be there any more, for a variety of reasons. A few will have been sold abroad, but connections are often loath to highlight this, in deference to clients who still have yearlings to sell. Others will have been moved on or pensioned because of fading popularity or even failing fertility. Occasionally, the name of a distinguished reverse-shuttler will no longer be on the list. We will encounter examples of most of these in the following mini-analysis, which centres largely on Darley’s outstanding team.
Believe it or not, Darley’s European squad has fallen each year since it stood at a substantial 35 stallions in 2020 (16 at Kildangan Stud, 13 at Dalham Hall Stud and six at Haras du Logis). By 2021, the number was down to 28 before dropping to 26 in 2022 and now to 24 for 2023, when there will be only two newcomers – the sprinters Perfect Power and Naval Crown.
It appears that even the most powerful of stallion operations can find it hard to secure colts who combine the rare mix of top-notch bloodlines, conformation and performance that today’s breeders expect. Coolmore added only one new stallion, St Mark’s Basilica, in 2022 and one again – the prematurely-retired Blackbeard – in 2023. With Juddmonte making no additions, there is a noticeable shortage of new stallions in Britain for 2023, the star of the show being Baaeed.
The main reason why the Darley team experienced such a substantial drop in numbers a few years ago was the end of the stud’s experiment called the Darley Club. No doubt the motivation for this experiment was the success in the US of Spendthrift Farm’s incentive scheme called Share The Upside, which could hardly have had a better flagbearer than Into Mischief, now the holder of four consecutive champion sire titles.
In the Darley Club programme, which began with four first-crop stallions in 2016, breeders were offered free nominations in a stallion’s second and third years if they paid up front for a first-year nomination. Breeders who used a stallion in each of his first three seasons would then be rewarded for their loyalty with a lifetime breeding right.
As Sam Bullard, Darley’s Director of Stallions, explained at the time: “The Darley Club offers breeders a fantastic and very affordable way of breeding to quality stallions. The chance to secure a lifetime breeding right for the cost of just one nomination is a great opportunity for breeders, and offers fantastic terms which put the balance of power firmly in the hands of the breeder.”
Three more stallions were added to the Club scheme in 2017, one of which – the modestly-bred Toormore – was quickly returned to training after this winner of the National Stakes failed to attract sufficient support. The six remaining Club stallions, which were spread between Britain, Ireland and France, were all admirable racehorses and all were sons of successful Darley stallions. Several of them were also admirably tough, with Fulbright, Hunter’s Light, Bow Creek, French Navy and Buratino respectively being veterans of 30, 27, 24, 23 and 13 races.
Yet Fulbright, French Navy, Buratino and Bow Creek all lacked that Group 1
success which breeders crave and the other two – Hunter’s Light and Outstrip – had gained their Group 1 victories away from Britain, Ireland and France.
The fact that none of the six is still on the Darley roster no doubt tells its own story, with some of them struggling for support from the start. Outstrip, though, was an exception. This good-looking grey by Exceed And Excel possessed the two-year-old ability which is usually high on a breeder’s tick list. In addition to winning the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf at Santa Anita, Outstrip had handed The Grey Gatsby a three-length defeat in the Champagne Stakes after being narrowly beaten in the Vintage Stakes. Breeders could also tick the box for a classy female line, his dam being the well-bred American Grade 1 winner Asi Siempre.
Unfortunately, Outstrip had failed to win any of his six starts at three and four, though two creditable efforts behind Kingman at three were worthy of a Timeform rating of 116. His career tailed off with two lacklustre efforts at Meydan early in 2015, which meant that breeders could be forgiven for forgetting his smart juvenile form by the time he made his debut at stud in 2016. Darley compensated by setting his fee at only £5,000, compared to the £40,000 fee commanded by Outstrip’s sire Exceed And Excel in 2016.
The intention of the Club programme
86 THE OWNER BREEDER
Gold Trip: Melbourne Cup winner is sired by former Darley stallion Outstrip
was to maintain the young stallions’ support after their first season and it worked well with Outstrip, who covered 130 mares in his first year, 126 in his second and 128 in his third. Subsequent years proved much harder, with 91 mares in year four, 62 in year five and 26 in year six, in 2021, when it was announced early in the breeding season that the ten-yearold stallion had been sold to a syndicate of Brazilian breeders.
By that stage Outstrip had been represented by the Grade 3 American winner Outburst and Listed winner Flippa The Strippa. However, pride of place very much belonged to Gold Trip, winner of the Prix Greffulhe before finishing third in the Grand Prix de Paris and fourth in Sottsass’ Arc. Gold Trip added further Group 1 placings in France at four yet it has been his exploits in Australia in 2022 that have turned the spotlight onto Outstrip.
Beaten only a head in the Caulfield Cup, Gold Trip had his class and stamina put to the test when he tried two miles for the first time in the Melbourne Cup. Carrying top weight of 9-1 and starting at 20-1, Gold Trip proved surprisingly well suited by the extra half mile, winning by two lengths from Kingman’s ex-English son Emissary.
Pinpointing the source of his stamina isn’t easy, as Outstrip was a miler and so was Gold Trip’s broodmare sire Dubai Destination. However, Gold Trip’s second and third dams were by Rainbow Quest and Doyoun, and the fourth generation of his pedigree contains the likes of Sadler’s Wells, Silver Hawk and Alleged, who – together with Rainbow Quest – all sired winners of the St Leger. A more typical offspring of Outstrip is two-year-old Tigrais, winner of the Prix la Rochette, but Outstrip has also had Listed winners over 9f, 9.5f and 11f in 2022.
It was appropriate that Australia’s most prestigious prize should fall to a grandson of Exceed And Excel, Australia’s champion sire of 2012-13. Exceed And Excel first shuttled from his native Australia to Europe for the 2005 breeding season and was to make the journey for 16 consecutive years, standing his last season at Kildangan Stud in 2020. In the process he sired more than 1,600 foals in Australia. Equineline credits him with a worldwide total of 2,896 foals of racing age and the final figure will easily top the 3,000 mark, as he is still part of the Darley team in Australia, standing the 2022 season at AUS$132,000 (£72,000).
It is a similar story with Fastnet Rock, another of Danehill’s champion Australian sires. The much-travelled Fastnet Rock disappeared from Coolmore’s Irish roster
after the 2021 season but he too is still active in Australia, priced at AUS$165,000 in 2022. His tally of racing-age offspring stands at 2,810 and he too will eventually leave a legacy of over 3,000 foals. Such numbers seem hard to comprehend when the long-lived Northern Dancer is credited with a lifetime total of 646.
Some of the stallions mentioned here became exceptional sires of sires, so where does Exceed And Excel stand in this respect? I wouldn’t include him in that category, though Excelebration (now in Morocco) gave us Barney Roy and Helmet excelled with Thunder Snow. In addition to Outstrip, there’s also Bungle Inthejungle, sire of Nunthorpe Stakes winner Winter Power, Sidestep, sire of Golden Slipper Stakes winner Kiamichi, and Kuroshio, sire of Australian Group 1 winner Savatoxl.
The story isn’t over yet, though, and it should pay to keep an eye on Cotai Glory, whose fee has risen from €5,000 to
Bloodstock world views
several mares a day. It is no coincidence that only two of his 14 crops have contained more than 100 foals, with his highest total standing at 105. His 11 crops of racing age averaged 90 foals per crop, but his last few crops are going to reduce that average to somewhere in the 70s.
This amounts to a rather subdued, undeserved closing stage to the career of a wonderfully tough and quirky racehorse. Only once out of the first two in 11 starts, he was unbeaten as a two-year-old and could be considered a little unlucky to lose his unbeaten record when beaten only a nose after attempting to lead throughout in the 2,000 Guineas. He made full amends for that defeat when overcoming traffic problems in the Derby and later rounded off his career with victories in the Irish Champion Stakes and Champion Stakes, his six-length victory in the latter being his fifth at Group 1 level.
For a while it looked as though New Approach was going to be even more effective as a stallion. He burst onto the scene with a magnificent treble at the 2012 Royal Ascot meeting, where the future 2,000 Guineas winner Dawn Approach –already an unbeaten winner of three races – landed the Coventry Stakes. Next came the short-lived Newfangled, who maintained her unbeaten record in the Albany Stakes, a day before Tha’ir took the Chesham Stakes.
€12,500 in the space of three years. With 213 foals in his two inexpensive crops of racing age, Cotai Glory has passed on his precocious speed to Atomic Force (winner of the Prix Robert Papin) and to The Platinum Queen, whose victory over the older sprinters in the Prix de l’Abbaye was instrumental in her selling for 1,200,000gns at the Tattersalls December Mares Sale. There’s good reason for expecting greater things from the Tally-Ho Stud resident.
One name I noticed was missing from the latest published Darley stallion roster was that of New Approach.
The 18-year-old covered 28 mares in 2020, for 22 foals, and 21 mares in 2021, for 14 foals. However, he is credited with covering only 11 mares in 2022, at the age of 17. And while he hasn’t officially been retired, he hasn’t been included in the latest Weatherbys Stallion Book and isn’t expected to cover a lot of mares.
I believe New Approach is a rig and his career has inevitably been compromised by his inability to cover
These three came from a crop of 94 which eventually produced eight Group winners and three Listed winners. Even New Approach’s sire Galileo would have been proud of such figures, especially when the group included a four-time Group 1 winner in Dawn Approach and an Oaks winner in Talent, as well as Libertarian (Dante Stakes and second in the Derby), Sultanina (Nassau Stakes) and Messi (Sky Classic Stakes).
New Approach has gone on to boost his total of Group 1 winners to seven in Europe and two in Australia, where the veteran Cascadian is still doing well at the top level. Potentially the most important of his sons is Masar, who followed the example of New Approach and Galileo in winning the Derby. With his first-crop sons selling for up to 350,000gns and his second-crop foals fetching up to 110,000gns, Masar looks well positioned to extend his male line’s influence, especially when he is inbred 3 x 4 to the highly influential Urban Sea.
It’s possible, though, that New Approach’s greatest legacy will come via his broodmare daughters, which have already produced the likes of Modern Games and Earthlight.
THE OWNER BREEDER 87
“Pinpointing the source of Gold
Trip’s stamina isn’t easy as his sire was a miler”
The special section for ROA members
New process to request a review of a handicap mark
The British Horseracing Authority has outlined changes to the process relating to the review of a horse’s handicap mark. The new process, outlined below, clarifies what will happen when there is requirement to formally ask for a handicap mark to be reviewed.
A new stage has been introduced to further enhance and improve the process. An independent handicapping ombudsman has been appointed to oversee the review process should any concern fail to be resolved during the initial stages. This replaces the handicapping appeals panel.
As a reminder, if you are unhappy with the handicap rating your horse has been allocated, the process to appeal is as follows:
Step 1: Contact the relevant handicapper
A representative of the horse’s connections should first establish which handicapper rated their horse. You can search for this information using your horse’s form or the individual race results.
Then contact the relevant handicapper via email or phone to discuss your concern(s). The handicapper will then review the horse’s rating, or any non-allocation of a rating, since the horse’s most recent performance.
Step 2: Connections contact the Head of Handicapping
If the concerns are not addressed to their satisfaction, the next step is to approach the BHA’s Head of Handicapping, Dominic GardinerHill. The Head of Handicapping will review the case from first principles, independent of the handicapper who originally rated the horse.
Step 3: Trainer submits formal appeal
If the concerns have not been addressed to their satisfaction via steps 1 and 2, it is at this stage that connections can request an independent review. To do this, the trainer must complete a handicapping appeal form. Only a licensed trainer can submit a formal appeal.
All handicapping appeals will be considered by the handicapping ombudsman. If the ombudsman is unavailable for whatever reason,
including any potential conflict of interest, they must excuse themselves from a particular appeal and the deputy ombudsman will consider the appeal.
Both the handicapping ombudsman and the deputy ombudsman are independent of the BHA.
The handicapping week involves all weekly handicapping changes being published at 7am on Tuesday. For the results of the appeal to be included within the current handicapping week, the trainer must have completed and submitted the form by no later than 5pm on Wednesday.
A charge of £195 plus VAT will apply to each individual appeal. The charge will be debited from the trainer’s racing account and will apply whatever the outcome of the review. The BHA will meet most of the costs associated with the ombudsman, but this payment is a contribution towards the administrative costs of the review service.
Step 4: Ombudsman contacts connections and the handicapper to understand their positions
The ombudsman will agree a date and time to speak with the horse’s connections with a view to understanding the reasons for their appeal.
A separate conversation will take place between the ombudsman and handicapper in which the ombudsman will seek to understand the handicapper’s
approach to the matter under review.
It is not anticipated that there will be a need for any further investigation, although should the ombudsman wish to follow up any points with connections of the horse and/or the handicapper, they are permitted to do so.
Neither representative will be asked to provide written evidence as part of the appeal process.
Step 5: Adjudication
The ombudsman will consider the representations made as part of reviewing all aspects of the case. The BHA will notify connections of the ombudsman’s decision by the following Monday (at the latest).
If an appeal is successful the ombudsman will adjust the horse’s rating – or allot that horse an initial rating – according to their adjudication. Any rating revision will be published the following Tuesday morning along with the weekly handicapping reassessments.
If the appeal is unsuccessful, the handicapper’s initial decision will stand.
Whatever the outcome, connections will receive a summary of the written reasons for the adjudication from the ombudsman within seven days of being informed of the result of the appeal. These reasons will subsequently be published on the BHA website.
Should you require any further information please do not hesitate to contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
88 THE OWNER BREEDER
Owners are entitled to appeal their runners’ ratings with the relevant handicapper
THE RACEGOERS CLUB COLUMN
Tony Wells gives his views on the racing scene
Did events at Ascot on Saturday, November 19 signify a major moment in the history of National Hunt racing? Is climate change the biggest threat to jump racing in Britain? When Ascot is unable to provide suitable ground for some trainers despite 41mm of rain falling in the days leading up to the meeting, it’s clearly a major concern.
Ascot, alongside Newbury and Cheltenham, are reporting that the rain is disappearing into the ground as quickly as it falls because the water table is so low. If the summer of 2022 is a one-off, then maybe not. But if the lack of rain during the summer months becomes a regular occurrence, the courses will have to rethink their ground management strategy. If they don’t, some courses may not be able to race in the autumn and if that happens at the three courses mentioned, the lead up to Christmas for jump racing fans may look very different in years to come.
We know that both Ascot and Cheltenham drain exceptionally well –perhaps too well. If the current ground situation continues despite higherthan-average rainfall in November, then should courses be looking at water retention systems, rather than the very efficient drainage systems they have in place? I don’t envy the Clerks of the Course, as they’ll be damned if they do and damned if they don’t.
November is invariably the wettest month of the year; 2022 was no different. Therefore, instead of racing on ground that has give only in the top few inches and opening it up, should the courses be left alone to absorb the rain? Could the big autumn races be pushed back a month or so? It would certainly improve the competitiveness of the racing.
Whatever racing decides to do, it needs to do something. One of the more interesting suggestions I read was to move the two-day meetings from a Friday start to a Saturday start. This would ensure the freshest ground on the big racedays and avoid the problem where the ground is opened up and then dries out. It would also allow the Sunday to become a back-up day in the event of the Saturday being abandoned.
Ascot’s loss turned out to be Newcastle’s gain, as Constitution Hill was rerouted to the following Saturday’s Fighting Fifth Hurdle, and an added bonus for the north-east track was the appearance of L’Homme Presse in the Rehearsal Chase. Newcastle had its biggest Fighting Fifth attendance in years. Who says you need music to bring in the crowds? If you can attract equine stars, the punters will come.
Constitution Hill certainly wowed the crowd. There was an audible gasp as he quickened after jumping the third-last as he quickly put daylight between himself and Epatante. The performance drew comparisons with the best hurdlers, with some experts saying he is the best they’ve ever seen. I would prefer to wait until he has won a Champion Hurdle before anointing him but if he keeps on putting in performances like his two most recent ones, those experts may well be right and we will be in the presence of an alltime great come March 14.
I was at Sandown on Tingle Creek day in December. It seems remarkable that I saw Constitution Hill make his debut at this meeting just a year ago and now he’s the best hurdler around. The Tingle Creek meeting has a habit of unearthing stars and this year it may have been Jonbon. He didn’t face a difficult task in the Henry VIII Novices’
Chase. In the paddock he looked magnificent and I would encourage anyone who gets to see him race to make sure they visit the paddock. In the race itself, he jumped beautifully. There is something special about standing in front of the stands at Sandown and watching a top-class two-mile chaser tackle the Railway fences. I got the impression that Jonbon may go on to emulate Edwardstone and return this year to win the Tingle Creek.
The atmosphere at Sandown cranked up with the Tingle Creek. The noise from the stands increased as the market leaders cleared the last of the Railway fences and bounded on towards the Pond fence. Shishkin fluffed his lines, leaving last year’s winner Greaneteen with just Edwardstone as a challenger. But in a matter of strides Edwardstone established his superiority and drew away, accompanied by tremendous applause from a packed grandstand. It looks like the Brits have a genuine contender to take on the best of the Irish in the Champion Chase.
This National Hunt season has been a slow burner, but on successive Saturdays Newcastle and Sandown played host to memorable performances. Let’s hope the worries about the weather and ground conditions can be put behind us and we can witness some more exhilarating performances in the coming weeks.
THE OWNER BREEDER 89 www.roa.co.uk • 01183 385680 • email@example.com @racehorseowners RacehorseOwnersUK Racehorseownersassociation
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Edwardstone dazzled in the Grade 1 Tingle Creek Chase at Sandown
Star duo ensure there’s no sign of the winter blues for Geoff Wilson
To say that owner and ROA member Geoff Wilson had a successful 2022 was a late contender for understatement of the year.
He is involved in only two horses, with Johnson’s Blue’s form figures from the end of March to the time of writing reading 12111141, while from late June to mid-October It Just Takes Time’s read 1121122 – what’s more, those four victories for the latter placed him in pole position on the Yorkshire Wonder Horse leaderboard.
That is a Go Racing in Yorkshire initiative, in association with equestrian suppliers Wm McIvor & Son, whereby the
first horse who manages to win at the county’s nine courses between the start of the Flat turf season at Doncaster last March and December 31 this year will earn connections £100,000, split 70% to the owner/s, 10% to the trainer, 10% to the yard and 10% to the jockey/s, on a pro-rata basis if more than one.
It Just Takes Time has won at Thirsk, York, Beverley and Redcar, and also rather agonisingly come second at Doncaster, Pontefract and Catterick, and heads a cluster of horses on three wins snapping at his heels and setting up an exciting challenge for 2023.
Wilson, who owns Johnson’s Blue with Cambridge Racing and It Just Takes
Time as part of the Go Alfresco Racing Partners, has had a lifelong love of racing.
“I have always been interested in the sport,” he says. “I used to go to many point-to-points as a young boy.
“On Good Friday 2011, we visited the Middleham Open Day and a few weeks later I decided to join a syndicate.
“Over the years my percentage in a syndicate has varied from 20%, 25% and 50%. I was involved in eight horses over the period of 2011 to 2020, of which two were winners of three races.”
Quite a contrast then with 2022, when his Mark Walford-trained duo carried much before them.
Jumper Johnson’s Blue, who turns six
90 THE OWNER BREEDER
Geoff Wilson with jockey Tom Midgley and groom Georgina Rooke after a victory from Johnson’s Blue at Hexham
this month and was under consideration for the £35,000 Fakenham Grand Prix Handicap Hurdle on New Year’s Day, has taken his rating from 87 to 123 as of mid-December with a spectacular run of success,
It Just Takes Time, a five-yearold from January 1, plies his trade in handicaps on the level, at or around seven furlongs.
Wilson continues: “In 2020 Go Alfresco Racing Partners, which include Ian and Pam Firth, John and Susan Milner, Peter and Lucy Emmerson, and [wife] Liz and myself, opted to move stables and we visited three, deciding on Mark Walford Racing at Sheriff Hutton.
“We were very impressed with the family atmosphere of all the staff, Mr and Mrs Walford senior and junior work alongside the staff. The stable has excellent gallops and we particularly liked the fact that the horses get turned out daily into paddocks, weather permitting.
“It is also a working farm, so there are sheep and cattle, with machinery moving around, which can only be good for the horses’ mental wellbeing. Mrs Walford senior makes cake for the midmorning break for everyone. I can usually perfectly time a stable visit at break-time!
“Mark Walford bought It Just Takes Time for us, who was noted to be a difficult horse. He has been a revelation and the partners are trying to win the Yorkshire Wonder Horse title.”
Trying and so far succeeding, which have been words associated with Johnson’s Blue too; even the 4 in his
Johnson’s Blue front-running and really enjoying himself; the best of his wins was at Cartmel in the William Hill Cumbria Crystal Cup Handicap Hurdle. It was lovely weather, with a great racing crowd and the Lakeland Fells as a lovely backdrop.
“Other highlights of the season came with It Just Takes Time. The Go Alfresco Partners wanted Mark to enter him for a race at York, which is my local track, which he did and we were delighted to see him win, with local friends and associates having a little wager on him and getting a great amount of joy from the race.
form figures was some effort, coming in a Pertemps qualifier at Aintree which was won by Remastered – subsequently second in the Coral Gold Cup – with Ashtown Lad, who then landed the Becher, in third.
Wilson says: “Whilst at the stable, I mentioned that I would like to have an interest in a hurdler and Mark offered me a 50% stake in Johnson’s Blue, who was unraced – the other 50% is owned by Andrew Cambridge. Andrew has a number of horses with Mark and, interestingly, is starting a grey horse syndicate.
“From the end of March until now, Johnson’s Blue and It Just Takes Time have won ten between them, so I consider myself very lucky.
“The highlights for me have been
Hat-trick for Gloire D’Athon
Jennifer Pitman’s Gloire D’Athon has now notched up three wins and two second places since his purchase from Ireland. His latest success was at Sandown during the Tingle Creek meeting, making all to win a novices’ handicap chase. Gloire D’Athon is one of over 800 winners that have carried the Tote logo over the course of 2022.
The ROA and Tote sponsorship scheme is currently being used by 1,966 members and allows them to register for and reclaim the VAT charged on the purchase price of their horse and many associated fees. This can represent an annual recovery of over £4,700.
If you require help in reclaiming your VAT, the ROA VAT Solution team is on hand to guide you through the process. For more information on what the team can do for you please contact Davina or Glen on firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 01183 385680.
“The highlights of racehorse ownership are the wins and also the friendships formed.”
Wilson knows that the odds on the annus mirabilis that was 2022 being repeated will be long, and he says: “The worst thing about being a racehorse owner is not having a winner for years, and going to the all-weather tracks when it is cold and travelling home late in the evening after a poor run.”
It is, it must be said, the time of year for such occurrences, and many owners will know such feelings all too well –which is exactly why runs like Wilson enjoyed in 2022 are worth writing about.
Signing off optimistically, he adds: “I’m a 72-year-old director of a family engineering company, I still put on my working boots every day, and look forward to going to the races.”
THE OWNER BREEDER 91
“The highlights of ownership are the
and also the friendships”
Gloire D’Athon: struck at Sandown’s Tingle Creek meeting
Awards season winners
With awards season in full swing the ROA has supported a number of regional events across the country, celebrating both equine and human talent.
The ROA was headline sponsor of the Welsh Horse Racing Awards at the International Convention Centre at the Celtic Manor. It was a memorable night for the La Pyle Partnership, who won Flat Owner of the Year for Pyledriver’s exploits, which included success in the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes. The Diamond Racing syndicate won the National Hunt owner prize after they struck gold with Iwilldoit in last year’s Coral Welsh Grand National.
Similarly, we were headline sponsor of the Northern Horseracing Awards, which took place at Newcastle racecourse on November 25.
In spite of England playing a World Cup game that night, a large and enthusiastic crowed cheered on the
winners, which included Brian Hughes as winner of the ROA-sponsored Magic Moments Award after regaining his champion jockey crown in 2022.
In a year of extraordinary achievements, Mark and Charlie Johnston were also celebrated with their own Magic Moments Award after Mark passed the 5,000-winner landmark in July.
Finally, the ROA sponsored a number of awards at the Epsom Owners and Trainers Awards on December 3. Rocking
Raceday curtailment payments
A spate of mid-fixture abandonments led to the activation of the ROA’s Raceday Curtailment Scheme on three occasions during November.
The scheme provides a payment of £100 to any members who own at least 51% of a horse that had been due to run at a meeting that is abandoned after at least the first race has taken place.
The scheme has been set up in collaboration with Weatherbys Hamilton, insurance brokers for the ROA’s Third Party Liability Insurance Scheme.
The Raceday Curtailment Scheme has been introduced with the aim of reducing the financial blow to an owner who is left disappointed that their horse is unable to race but still has incurred transport costs, both for the horse and, often, themselves.
Members do not need to apply for
this scheme. As long as the affected owner’s ROA membership is up to date, the payment will be made automatically.
Twelve members benefitted from this scheme after Sedgefield’s abandonment on November 3. Sandown’s Sunday meeting on November 6 led to 18 members receiving the payment, whilst Market Rasen’s abandonment on November 17 led to ten payments being made.
On January 1 all yearlings will turn two and may become eligible for ROA/ Tote sponsorship, which allows owners to become VAT -registered under the VAT Registration Scheme for racehorse owners.
ROA members are eligible for sponsorship under the ROA/Tote Sponsorship Scheme if they own 100% of a horse in training. For horses owned in partnership, all partners must be
Ends was the champion juvenile for ROA member and ROA VAT Solution client Colin Westley. Rocking Ends was a winner of two races at Lingfield and Salisbury after running a good race in the Windsor Castle Stakes at Royal Ascot.
The headline Horse of the Year accolade went to Richard O’Dwyer and Paul Taylor’s Going Gone, trained by Jim Boyle. The Le Havre gelding captured the Mallard Handicap at the St Leger Festival at Doncaster.
ROA members for the horse to be eligible for sponsorship. For syndicates and clubs, all syndicators or club managers must be ROA members.
Your trainer may also have a yard sponsorship agreement, which you could use. Please speak to your trainer to find out their arrangements.
If you purchased your horse at Tattersalls, the horse could be eligible for their sponsorship as a two-, threeand four-year-old. Please contact Tattersalls to arrange any sponsorship with them directly.
You can also register a third-party sponsorship, which you have sourced yourself, on the Racing Administration website.
To find out more visit https://www. roa.co.uk/benefits/sponsorship.html.
Car park labels
ROA members based in the UK and Ireland will receive their 2023 car park labels by the end of the year. If you live overseas and require a label to be sent to a UK address, please let us know via email@example.com.
92 THE OWNER BREEDER
Brian Hughes (left) and Mark Johnston were winners at the Northern Racing Awards
Aintree is RCA Showcase Champion
In November Aintree racecourse was crowned RCA Showcase Champion at the 2022 Showcase Awards, becoming only the second racecourse in the history of the Showcase Awards to receive the ultimate accolade on multiple occasions.
On a bumper night for Aintree, their NHS Raceday was awarded the best raceday event by the independent panel of judges, also claiming the non-raceday event award for its community screening of the 2022 Champions League Final, an event heralded for its family-friendly atmosphere and return rate of attendees.
Held at the previous champion racecourse, Pontefract, the RCA Showcase Awards, partnered by Great British Racing, Racing Together, Racing Foundation and the Racing Post, celebrate excellence and innovation in racecourse operation.
Chester and Bangor’s Jeannie Chantler collected the RCA Chairman’s Award for her outstanding contribution to racing on account of her wonderful career within the sport spanning over 25 years.
With individual category winners for Flat (York), dual-purpose (Ascot) and jump racecourses (Cartmel) already decided, Cartmel celebrated victory as overall champion in the racecourse groundstaff category following judgement from an independent agronomist.
Pontefract picked up two awards. The community café Huggamug @The Pavilion claimed the food and beverage award, with the judges delighted by its commercial success and ability to embed the racecourse within the local community. In the marketing category, Pontefract’s strategy to focus on an older demographic reaped significant reward with an upturn in attendances and repeat custom.
Market Rasen’s successful sensory raceday claimed the award celebrating diversity and inclusion as they were able to welcome members of the deaf and blind community to enjoy a day at the races, with innovations including race commentary in British sign language and reserved areas beside key parts of the racetrack to be that much closer to the action.
Scottish Racing took home the Racing Together Community Award for their sustained efforts in both leading and collating community-based activity
across racing’s stakeholders in Scotland and the north of England.
The Racing Post Readers’ Award is the only Showcase award to be voted for
From January 1 HMRC will be introducing a new points-based penalty system for late VAT submissions.
VAT-registered businesses will receive a point every time they miss a submission deadline. HMRC will notify them of each point. At a certain threshold of points (shown below) a financial penalty of £200 will be charged and the taxpayer will be notified.
The penalty thresholds will be as follows: Submission Penalty frequency threshold Annual 2 points Quarterly 4 points Monthly 5 points Expiry of all points After a taxpayer has reached the penalty threshold, all the points will be reset to zero when the taxpayer has met both the following conditions: – They have met all submission
obligations on time for the period of compliance outlined in the table below; – All VAT returns due within the preceding 24 months have been submitted.
Both requirements must be met before points can be reset.
The periods of compliance are: Submission Period of frequency compliance Annual 24 months Quarterly 12 months Monthly 6 months
From November 29, 2022, VATregistered owners can no longer sign themselves up to Making Tax Digital. HMRC will be signing up all remaining VAT registrations automatically. Owners must now use MTD-compliant software for VAT and to keep digital records.
The ROA VAT Solution team is on hand to assist you with all your digital VAT. Appointing us as your VAT Agent is straightforward. To engage our services contact Davina or Glen at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01183 385685.
THE OWNER BREEDER 93
directly by the general public. Hamilton Park stormed to victory, measuring highly for value for money, customer service and overall raceday experience.
The Aintree team with their awards
Forum Racing Foundation contributes
£35 million to racing in a decade
The Racing Foundation, which celebrated its tenth birthday in 2022, has contributed more than £35 million in funding to charitable causes in British Racing over the last decade.
The Racing Foundation was set up in 2012 with a £78m endowment from the net proceeds of the UK government’s sale of the Tote. Its central aim is to support charitable purposes associated with the horseracing and thoroughbred breeding industry.
By supporting charitable work and encouraging the creation of co-ordinated strategies across the racing industry, the Foundation drives progress in four key areas: people, equine welfare, community engagement and environmental sustainability.
An open grants programme is offered three times a year, supporting innovative projects that address issues faced by the industry and offering a range of
organisational support opportunities. A small grants programme supplements this work along with a pro-active programme designed to support major industry challenges.
The Foundation’s seven-strong Board
of Trustees is chaired by Julia Budd. Chief Executive Rob Hezel and his team have the purpose of making a difference in racing by acting as a catalyst and a funder of improvement.
“The Foundation has evolved considerably since its inception,” reflected Hezel. “Not only has the amount of funding provided to the industry increased but the Foundation has leveraged the funding to positively influence thinking and create the basis for longer-term industry improvement.
“We are all proud of the Foundation’s evolution. However, like everyone else in the sport, we recognise that the Foundation must continue to evolve if the industry is to effectively confront its challenges and remain sustainable.”
You can find out more at www. racingfoundation.co.uk and by following @RacingGrants on LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram.
94 THE OWNER BREEDER
Rob Hezel: Racing Foundation is evolving
Chris Pitt, Prominent raCing historian
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The special section for TBA members
NH breeders – don’t miss out on the 2023 Elite NH Mares’ Scheme
Applications are now being taken for the TBA/HBLB Elite NH Mares’ Scheme and will be accepted until January 31.
Created to highlight to breeders the quality of National Hunt stallions standing in Great Britain, 29 eligible stallions have been made available.
TBA members who own mares rated 130+ or who have produced a runner of a defined performance level (see below) are eligible for subsidised nominations to British-based stallions which are eligible and nominated by their managers under the terms of the scheme.
Funded by the HBLB, grants of up to £4,000 are available for eligible
mares - for more information visit the TBA website (www.thetba.co.uk > Breed Protection > Elite NH Mares’ Scheme) or contact Rob Davey in Stansted House at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Stallions in 2023 Elite Mares' Scheme
• CANNOCK CHASE
Updated Codes of Practice released
The 45th edition of the HBLB International Codes of Practice has been reviewed and published in readiness for the 2023 breeding season and can be accessed at www. codes.hblb.org.uk. A printed booklet can be requested from the TBA office (email@example.com).
The Codes are an essential tool in the prevention and control of equine infectious diseases, which can represent
a potential major threat to the equine breeding industry. There are dedicated sections which describe transmission of disease, clinical signs, as well as providing guidance on prevention, diagnosis and control of infection. The Codes also explain the notification requirements that apply for the four diseases that are notifiable by law: CEM, EVA, EIA and dourine.
96 THE OWNER BREEDER
• HARBOUR LAW
• JACK HOBBS
• KINGSTON HILL • LINDA’S LAD • LOGICIAN • MARMELO
• MASTERSTROKE • OCOVANGO
• PASSING GLANCE • PETHER’S MOON • PLANTEUR • SADDLER’S ROCK • SCHIAPARELLI • TELESCOPE
• VIRTUAL • WALZERTAKT • YORGUNNABELUCKY
Overbury Stud sire Jack Hobbs is available to breeders under the Elite NH Mares' Scheme
30-day foal notification
With foaling season arriving swiftly, breeders are reminded that when a foal is bred for racing in Great Britain, the breeder/owner must notify the General Stud Book (Weatherbys) of its birth and whereabouts within 30 days of its birth (day one being the date of birth).
Notification is free and should be done through the online portal: www.weatherbysgsb.co.uk.
If you are unsure as to whether a foal has been notified, visit selim. britishhorseracing.com/potro to check a horse’s status.
Please be aware that 30-day foal notification is different from foal registration. This must still be completed with the General Stud Book in accordance with the legislative requirements and any other Rules of Racing.
If notification has not been received within the 30-day window, before the horse may be eligible to race, the BHA may require a Certificate of Analysis reporting no evidence of the presence or use of a substance prohibited at all times in a sample collected by the BHA. You will be liable for the cost of the sample collection and analysis, which currently is £425 + VAT (cost of sampling is subject to fluctuation and may vary year on year).
In exceptional circumstances, for example where an individual or company continually fails to comply with the requirement, a foal may not be approved as eligible to run in Great Britain.
National Hunt stallions on show at Goffs UK
The TBA’s National Hunt Stallion Showcase will once again be held during the Goffs UK January Sale. The ever-popular event will take place on Tuesday, January 24 on the first day of the sale.
Supported by Goffs UK, the showcase will feature a number of exciting British-based National Hunt stallions who will be available to
view throughout the day, alongside the UK’s only National Hunt foal sale.
Taking place in yard B, the TBA will host a hospitality area where complimentary hot drinks and food will be available.
Running alongside the event will be the silent auction of National Hunt nominations. Held online and opening on Monday, January 23, bidding will close 72 hours later on Thursday, January 26.
Full details and a link to the auction website can be found on the TBA’s social media, as well as on the website.
New website with improved features
The TBA launched a new website in late November to deliver a better user and member experience.
The re-structured site includes a new secure member portal, with more online service capabilities including membership detail updates, subscription reminders and renewals, marketing preferences and event bookings.
Members visiting the site for the first time will need to use the forgotten password feature to reset their password using their membership email address, as passwords were encrypted on the old site and non-transferable.
Member excusive documents are now located across the
site in their relevant areas, for instance employment law fact sheets now appear in the Advice & Info section within the Employer Support hub.
The Advice & Info section contains a wealth of information to help breeders, and most membership benefit documents such as the Racecourse Badge Scheme for Breeders, sustainability guides, discounts and offers, can be found within those pages.
The TBA welcomes feedback on the website and suggestions for online service improvements. Visit www. thetba.co.uk.
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The jumps stallions will parade on January 24
Constitution Hill canters to Fighting Fifth victory
His seasonal reappearance might have been delayed due to faster than ideal ground conditions, but when the Sally Noott-bred Constitution Hill made his seasonal return in the Grade 1 Fighting Fifth Hurdle at Newcastle, the wait was worth it. Deploying tactics previously unused, that of attempting to make all, he readily quickened away from three out and won by a hard-held 12 lengths.
The same day, but at Newbury, and British-breds blitzed their rivals to take all three black-type contests. The feature event of the Winter Festival was the Coral Gold Cup and
the premier handicap was won in fine fashion by Le Milos. Bred by Little Lodge Stud and Rahinston Farm, the seven-year-old, who was backing up just short of three weeks after a win in the old Anne Duchess of Westminster Chase at Bangor, gamely fended off the attentions of fellow British-bred Remastered by half a length.
The Lady Bamford-bred First Street, a son of Golden Horn, defied top-weight and took the Gerry Feilden Intermediate Handicap Hurdle in good style for Nicky Henderson. The master trainer’s day got off to the perfect start when Luccia, owned and bred by Pump
and Plant Services Ltd, put in a polished display first up over hurdles to take the Listed mares’ novices’ hurdle from some promising sorts.
Over in Ireland and Pied Piper, bred by The Queen, took the Grade 2 WKD Hurdle for four-year-olds at Down Royal, whilst in France the Harriet Loder-bred Spirit Of The Moon (Sea The Moon) won the Listed Prix Marc Antony and a week later was third in the Grade 1 Prix Renaud du Vivier.
With the domestic scene winding down, British successes were enjoyed internationally. In Europe, the Juddmonte-bred Juncture won her
98 THE OWNER BREEDER TBA Forum
Constitution Hill looked awesome in the Grade 1 Fighting Fifth Hurdle at Newcastle under regular partner Nico de Boinville
second Listed contest of the season on the all-weather at Dundalk when taking the Cooley Fillies’ Stakes in impressive fashion.
Queen Aminatu struck a rich vein of form in the autumn and followed up a Listed win at Lingfield with victory in the Listed Prix Miss Satamixa at Deauville for owner-breeder Anthony Oppenheimer’s Hascombe & Valiant Stud.
At Lyon Parilly there was Listed success for Kirsten Rausing’s homebred three-year-old Allada when the daughter of Sea The Moon was victorious in the Prix du Grand Camp. Earlier in the month and the Rausingbred Zaaki, a son of former Lanwades stallion Leroidesanimaux, retained his Group 1 Champions (formerly Mackinnon) Stakes title.
Earlier on the card at Flemington and the three-year-old Frankel gelding Soulcombe, winner of the Melrose Handicap in August, made a successful start down under with an impressive win in the 2600m Group 3 Queen’s Cup. He was bred by Pursuit of Success LLC and defeated ten older horses.
Bred by Emirates Park Pty Ltd and a dual winner when in the care of Kevin Ryan, the Frankel colt Dajraan gained a first Group win in the Furphy Festival Stakes, a Group 3 handicap. Meanwhile at Cranbourne, the Chasemore Farmbred Uncle Bryn was an impressive winner of the Listed Cranbourne Cup, adding to his Listed Sale Cup win the
Another Australian Listed winner during November was Bartholomeu Dias, who took the Furphy Plate at Flemington on the opening day of the month. He was bred by Newsells Park, who were also on the scoresheet Stateside as a breeder – Big Everest took out the Artie Schiller Stakes at Aqueduct.
Over at Del Mar, Bellstreet Birdie, a daughter of Sir Percy and bred by Ashbrittle Stud, started to earn her keep with a bang. Bought from the Autumn Horses in Training Sale at Tattersalls for 260,000gns by Red Baron’s Barn and Rancho Temescal from Michael Bell, she won the Grade 3 Red Carpet Stakes by over four lengths straight off the plane.
Earlier in the month and the Bated Breath filly Bipartisanship, bred by Ebanos Limited, won the Kathryn Crosby Stakes.
Meanwhile, at Golden Gate Fields, one of the track's highlights, the Grade 3 Berkeley Handicap, was won by the Peter Onslow-bred Lammas, a son of former Mickley Stud resident Heeraat.
In Bahrain, the feature event of the year, the Group 3 Bahrain International Trophy, saw the Dubawi gelding Dubai Future defeat fellow Godolphin homebred Passion And Glory.
Results up to and including November 30. Produced in association with GBRI.
Equine health and welfare podcasts released
The TBA has produced a threepart podcast series to highlight the high standards of equine health and welfare throughout the thoroughbred breeding industry.
The first, featuring James Crowhurst and Kate Sigsworth, discusses the TBA’s Equine Welfare Guidelines, in particular the more recent chapters on the preparation and sale of thoroughbreds at public auction, which was developed in partnership with the ITBA; plus, the latest section aiming to support breeders with responsible end of life decision-making.
The second podcast in the series sees Simon Cooper, Crowhurst and Sigsworth discuss the importance of traceability to the thoroughbred
sector and the legislative requirements of breeders.
Data is collected via General Stud Book registration processes, the e-passport and the vaccination app, which ensures that the pathways of all thoroughbreds bred for racing can be recorded efficiently and accurately.
The third podcast features Richard Newton, along with Crowhurst and Sigsworth, who discuss equine infectious disease control and prevention, including the role of the HBLB International Codes of Practice, emerging disease threats and practical implementation of biosecurity protocols on the stud farm.
All three of these podcasts can be found on the TBA’s website.
TBA Access launched
The TBA has launched a new and improved associate subscription, now known as TBA Access.
TBA Access will still offer the original benefits of the Associate subscription but in 2023 will introduce more events to grow interest in the thoroughbred breeding sector.
TBA Deputy Chairman Philip Newton said: “TBA Access will give people access to all areas of the thoroughbred breeding industry. It will give industry professionals, enthusiasts and students the chance to be more involved whilst networking with peers and learning from industry experts.
“Informal mentoring and networking opportunities coupled with event access will develop a stronger community of bloodstock fans. We want to provide people who work in the industry the chance to benefit from the TBA’s services and its people.”
TBA Access costs just £60 for the year, and includes:
• FREE access to networking and social events
• FREE access to TBA annual seminar
• Access to race badge offers
• FREE access to TB-Ed webinars, videos and other learning resources
• Access to the latest TBA and industry news (Digital - TBA, EBN, Owner Breeder)
• Access to educational bursary fund
• Access to discounts on TBA & TB-Ed courses
• Access to discounts including Racing TV and the National Horseracing Museum
For further information visit www.thetba.co.uk/become-amember.html.
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David Hockenhull, 1933-2022
David Hockenhull, founder of Shade Oak Stud in Shropshire, died in November shortly after his 89th birthday, writes Bryan Mayoh
Although David had not been involved in the running of the stud for many years, he continued to live on the farm with his wife, Anne, taking an interest in all its activities.
He would always help out in any way he could, collecting and delivering horses until fairly recently and continuing to ensure that the lawns were kept in excellent order. His friendly greeting to visitors was a feature that many will miss.
David had an interest in horses from his youth, riding in various equine competitions and gaining a reputation as a fearless rider prepared to mount the most difficult of horses. One of these was Housewife’s Choice, who despite temperament problems David managed to ride into fourth place in the Cheltenham Foxhunters; he arrived late having had to milk the cows at home and had no time to walk the course.
David’s father died when he was 12 and he left school as soon as he could to help on the family farm. Initially Shade Oak was a dairy farm, with around 100 cows, but the prize pedigree herd was wiped out by the 1967 foot-and-mouth outbreak and, although David restocked, his heart wasn’t in it, so he gradually turned to his real interest: breeding horses.
Shade Oak’s first stallion purchase was Pamroy in 1973 – with
With the new year upon us, members are advised of the following dates for events in 2023. Further events will be added to the calendar and members are advised to keep an eye on the news section of the TBA website for the most up to date information.
NH Stallion Showcase at Goffs UK, Doncaster
a Timeform rating of 98 he was some way short of the levels reached later! Establishing the stud took time, with several stallions purchased before Gunner B arrived in 1989. ‘Gunner’ was a 16-year-old and intended as a ‘fill-in’ before better prospects became available, but in his first year at Shade Oak his son Royal Gait won the Champion Hurdle, making his NH stallion career. The Grand National winner Red Marauder was sired at Shade Oak, and Gunner B became champion British NH sire. He was followed in this achievement by Alflora, the stud’s first major stallion purchase.
David’s all-time favourite stallions were such as Above Suspicion, Reliance and Ardross; he liked to see their names in pedigrees, although
Flat Stallion Parade at Tattersalls, Newmarket
GBB – Stage 3 deadline for 2021-born
Cheltenham Mares’ Day at Cheltenham racecourse
NH Breeders’ Awards Evening in Doncaster
these days this would be some way back!
David married Anne in 1958 and proved his own fertility when his daughter Denise was born nine months later, followed in fairly swift succession by son Peter and another daughter, Jacquie. David and Anne were recognised for their contribution to NH breeding when they were awarded the Queen Mother’s Silver Salver by the TBA
As Peter summed up at David’s memorial service: “Dad grew up in a different world from today’s. He was a good, honest, fair and loyal man who said it as he saw it. He would say: ‘Don’t be impressed by the horsebox, it’s what steps out of the back that counts.’ Most of all he was fun.”
GBB – Stage 2 deadline for 2022-born fillies
Flat Breeders’ Awards Evening –Chippenham Park
GBB – Stage 3 deadline for 2020-born Jump fillies
GBB – Stage 1 deadline for 2023-born fillies
100 THE OWNER BREEDER
David Hockenhull: laid the foundations for Shade Oak Stud's success
Stallion parade at Tattersalls
The Tattersalls February Sale in Newmarket will once again host the TBA’s Flat stallion parade. To be held on Thursday, February 2 the parade will take place before selling gets under way for the two-day sale, with stallions then able to be viewed afterwards in the Left Yard.
The event will feature stallions who will be standing their first, second or third season at stud in Britain,
providing the ideal opportunity for breeders to view them and finalise mating plans with stud representatives.
Breeders and members are invited to join the TBA for light refreshments in the hospitality box.
Further information on the parade, including a full list of stallions attending, will be available on the TBA website closer to the event.
2023 Junior NH Hurdle races
The BHA has released the dates for 12 Junior NH Hurdles between January and April. These races are for four-year-olds only and full details regards qualification can be found via the BHA.
Date Course 06/01/2023 LUDLOW 15/01/2023 KELSO 16/01/2023 HEREFORD (fillies only) 31/01/2023 FFOS LAS 15/02/2023 WETHERBY 19/02/2023 NEWBURY 26/02/2023 HEREFORD 09/03/2023 CARLISLE 13/03/2023 TAUNTON 21/03/2023 MARKET RASEN 15/04/2023 CHEPSTOW 24/04/2023 HEXHAM
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Two year international management and leadership programme for the thoroughbred racing and breeding industry. APPLY NOW Applications close 6th February 2023
Sires that have stood for three seasons or less will be on show in Newmarket
Breeder of the Month
Manufacturer of Words Howard Wright
BREEDER OF THE MONTH (November 2022)
LITTLE LODGE FARM
Jackie Chugg, whose Little Lodge Farm Stud in Droitwich, Worcestershire, is the TBA Breeder of the Month for November for Coral Gold Cup winner Le Milos, bred in partnership with Rahinston Farm, epitomises the truism that those breeding for the jumps sphere do so with the long game in mind.
Drawing on a recollection for names that would do credit to someone a third of her 71 years, she recalls that the story of Le Milos goes back to November 1978, when she and her late husband Robert ventured to the Ballsbridge sales in Ireland.
“We paid 600gns for a yearling filly by Bargello, sold by Frank Latham’s Blackrath Stud, and she was to be our foundation mare,” she says. “We called her Laurello and although she was placed three times over hurdles, she never won and her dam Camello never raced, but Laurello had two sisters, Highello and Margello, who between them won 23 races in France, including several Listed hurdles. Margello even ran in the 1984 Arc won by Sagace and finished just behind Sadler’s Wells, Sun Princess and Time Charter.”
The narrative moves closer to Le Milos through Laurello’s daughter Chattering, bought in 1988 as a threeyear-old store by Irish amateur rider and trainer John Fowler and named after his wife Lady Jennifer, better known as Chich, who was “always chattering,” according to Chugg.
Chattering won eight races, encompassing bumpers, hurdles and chases, but almost before she got going, the Chuggs heard that Laurello’s
March 2013 and Banjaxed Girl actually had her last race about three weeks later for Chich’s daughter-in-law Lorna.”
Lorna Fowler and husband Harry now run Rahinston Farm in County Meath, which is credited as joint owner of Banjaxed Girl, who resides at Little Lodge Farm as one of around a dozen broodmares, hence Le Milos’ qualification as a British-bred.
half-sister Belle Magello was for sale in France. Jackie recounts: “Robert and John Fowler persuaded a friend to buy her and they paid 7,000 francs, but she had a crooked leg and never ran, so they decided to breed from her.”
Belle Magello had 13 foals, 12 of whom ran and produced seven individual winners of 25 races, of whom Banjaxed Girl, the dam of Le Milos, was the best and the most successful. Banjaxed Girl was also the most amusingly named.
Chugg remembers: “A sign on the bathroom door in John and Chich’s house said: ‘This door is banjaxed, use it at your peril.’ One day a hapless girl got herself locked in and they had to call a carpenter to get her out, so Chich and I named our filly after the unfortunate event.
“She’s not very pretty, but after she’d won a point-to-point trained by Fergal O’Brien, we leased her to owners of Nigel Twiston-Davies and she won six times. We then sent her to Ireland, but sadly John Fowler had died in a tragic accident and Chich trained her to win a beginners’ chase before she too died in
Of Banjaxed Girl’s five foals, two have raced. Kid Commander made €40,000 as a foal, before two further enhanced sales took him into Anthony Honeyball’s yard, for which he won three times before suffering a fatal fall in December 2021. Le Milos was similarly sold as a foal in November 2015, fetching €27,000 to a bid from France, where he failed to gain a place in five three-yearold hurdle races before he was bought by trainer Tim Vaughan. Le Milos moved to Dan Skelton in October last year and won a handicap chase at Bangor and Newbury’s Coral Gold Cup (still better known as the Hennessy) in November.
Skelton also trains Le Milos’s fiveyear-old unnamed Presenting halfsister, whom Chugg owns with Harry Fowler. Banjaxed Girl’s four-year-old by Blue Bresil sold for €37,000 as a foal and fetched €75,000 to Milestone Bloodstock at the 2022 Tattersalls Derby Sale, while her two-year-old Getaway colt made €65,000 as a foal.
Banjaxed Girl is carrying to Vadamos, a progeny arrival that Chugg anticipates with growing interest in view of Le Milos’s success, but her breeder’s natural caution prompts her to say: “Let’s not get ahead of ourselves, which would be tempting fate. We’ll see what’s on the ground before making any plans.”
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Le Milos clears the last en route to victory in the Coral Gold Cup at Newbury
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Vet Forum: The Expert View
’Tis the season to be foaling
Fortunately, most mares manage to foal without complication and the unprepared might simply find one morning that there is a dry, happily sucking foal in the stable (or paddock) in with the mare that was still heavily pregnant the previous evening.
However, if something goes wrong with a foaling it can go wrong quickly and without warning – and the results can be disastrous for the mare and or the foal. Knowing what to expect in a normal foaling can help recognise when all is not as it should be and appropriate steps can be taken or help sought to try to ensure a happy outcome.
It is important to know the mare’s last covering date so that you have some idea of when she might foal. Having said that, the length of pregnancy in mares can vary from around 320 to 380 days, with the average length of gestation being 335 to 340 days, meaning it is impossible to plan accurately based on dates alone.
Approximately one month before her ‘expected’ foaling date, the mare should be moved to the premises where she will be foaling so that she can develop some immunity to potential environmental pathogens, enabling the mare to
share this immunity with her foal via the colostrum (first milk). She should have received all relevant vaccinations (influenza/tetanus/equine herpesvirus 1 and 4 and rotavirus if indicated) and be in good health. If she is being moved to a boarding stud, you might need to have certain blood tests and swabs taken in advance of the move. The stud will advise you of their particular requirements.
In the northern hemisphere, thoroughbred mares usually foal in a stable and most studs will have large foaling boxes into which the mare will be moved as she approaches term. Any stable used for foaling should be large enough (at least 4m x 4m), dry, warm and draft-free, have plenty of clean bedding and there must be permanent access to drinking water for the mare.
Most studs will foal on straw as it is warm and not as likely as shavings or paper to get into the foals’ eyes or mouth. Whatever bedding is used, it should be kept scrupulously clean. The mare should be turned out during the day into a paddock where she can be closely watched. Most mares foal at night and often in the early hours of the morning, but occasionally one will decide to foal during the day! Many studs use CCTV cameras or foaling
alarms (or both) to assist in monitoring heavily pregnant mares.
If you are foaling the mare at home you will need to gather together a few essential items: clean towels; a clean sponge or paper towel to wash the mare’s perineum; a clean bucket for water; skin disinfectant such as chlorhexidine or povidone iodine for hand washing; a headcollar and rope for the mare; naval dip or spray (consisting of dilute chlorhexidine or povidone iodine) for the foal’s umbilical stump; sterile scissors; a clean tail bandage; and emergency phone numbers (assistance/vet/transport etc). Umbilical tape or sterile (if possible) cord/string may also be needed.
What to look out for
There are a few changes which may be noticed in the mare as her foaling day approaches.
Relaxation of muscles at the base of the tail leads to a slightly ‘hollow’ appearance either side of her vulva. There will be an increase in size of her mammary glands (‘bagging up’) as she starts to produce and store milk. The first milk – colostrum – is rich in antibodies, which are essential
106 THE OWNER BREEDER
Most foals are born without complication but it is important to be prepared in case veterinary assistance is required
Deidre Carson BVSc(Syd) MRCVS
for the foal in the first weeks of life. This colostrum is thicker than normal milk and quite sticky. Small amounts usually appear at the teats, giving the appearance of wax droplets (‘waxing up’, Fig 1) as the mare gets closer to foaling. Some mares, especially maidens, may not bag up or wax up or may appear to do so and then ‘back off’, causing some confusion and frustration to anyone monitoring them for impending foaling.
Some mares will ‘run milk’, meaning they lose more colostrum than just the tiny amounts forming wax. If your mare is running milk, you may see this happening or you might just see dried milk on her hindlimbs. If this persists, the mare should be stripped out (i.e. milked) into a clean jug and the colostrum frozen in a suitable lidded container for administration to the foal after birth.
Frozen colostrum must be thawed slowly by immersing the container in hot water. It must not be microwaved as this destroys the important proteins.
Closer to foaling the vulva will lengthen as more muscles relax.
There are three stages of labour. During stage one the mare becomes restless and may walk the box or repeatedly lie down and stand again. Both heart and respiratory rates increase. She is likely to start to sweat (although not all mares do this. Some foaling alarms rely on the mare sweating and so aren’t effective in those that don’t).
The duration of stage one can vary from minutes to hours. During this stage you should ensure that you have everything you might need to hand. If you are concerned at all, call for
assistance from an experienced person. If you can do so safely, wrap the top of the tail in a bandage to below the level of the vulva and wash the mare’s perineum with plenty of clean water and a clean sponge or paper towel. Ensure all droppings have been picked up in the stable. Wash your hands with disinfectant and rinse them well.
Stage two is when the foal is delivered and is quite short in the mare – usually less than 20 minutes. The mare will lie down and obviously strain. Her waters should break, resulting in a gush of yellow/brown fluid as the placenta ruptures. A bulge of white membrane –the amnion – should appear at the vulval lips.
If you see a red velvety-looking bulge, this could indicate that the thicker outer layer of the placenta (chorion) hasn’t ruptured (‘Red bag’ delivery). This is an emergency situation and you might need to manually rupture the membrane. You should call your vet immediately.
The foal should then start to appear, with one front foot closely followed by the other with the head then following, ‘resting’ on the forelimbs. At this stage it is useful to check that the foal is coming out correctly. With clean hands, feel for two hooves, one slightly ahead of the other, and as labour progresses you should see the foal’s muzzle resting on the upper cannon, or slightly to one side. The foal’s back should be towards the mare’s back, not ‘upside down’. This means the foal is in a ‘diving’ position.
If any of these is not what is happening, call your vet immediately. Occasionally the head might be bent back or one or both front legs retained or contracted so that unassisted delivery is not possible. Rarely, the foal will be coming backwards (breach) or with all four limbs at once. These are emergency situations and you should call your vet immediately.
The shoulders follow the front legs and head, and then the abdomen and hips will be delivered. Once the head is delivered, the amnion (white inner sac) should rupture. If it doesn’t, you should tear it away from the foal’s nose promptly so that it can breathe freely.
The mare may appear to have a
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Figure 2: Foal immediately after birth
Figure 1: ‘Wax’ on mare’s teats prior to foaling
Vet Forum: The Expert View
‘break’ at this stage with the foal’s hind limbs still inside the birth canal. If she rests in this position, it enables full transfer of blood from the placenta to the foal before the umbilical cord ruptures.
As the foal starts to move or the mare gets to her feet, the umbilical cord should rupture close to the foal’s abdomen. Leave the mare lying down as long as she will stay there. She will often turn her head to look at and to whicker to the foal (Fig 2) or be impatient to stand and lick the foal (Fig 3). The foal’s umbilical stump should be sprayed or dipped in a dilute disinfectant solution (such as dilute povidone iodine or chlorhexidine). There should be little bleeding from the umbilical stump as the vessels constrict as they rupture. If bleeding does occur, wash your hands before pinching the end of the stump for a few minutes to try to stem the flow. If it still doesn’t stop, tie umbilical tape around the end to stop the bleeding.
During stage three the placenta is expelled. In most mares this occurs within about 90 minutes of foaling but can take longer. It can be useful to tie the placenta up using baler twine so that the mare doesn’t stand on it and
the weight can assist its passage (Fig 4). If the placenta has not been expelled within four to five hours you should contact your vet. Do not try to pull it out as it might tear, leaving behind a remnant that can cause serious, potentially life-threatening infection and associated laminitis. Once the placenta is passed, the thicker outer layer (chorion) should be checked for completeness, with the characteristic ‘F’ shape formed by the pregnant and nonpregnant horns as the ‘arms’.
If the foaling has progressed without incident and the placenta has been passed intact, you will still need to monitor the mare for signs of postfoaling colic (abdominal pain), which is quite common, particularly in maiden mares. If this isn’t mild or doesn’t pass quickly, you should call your vet.
The normal newborn foal will start to make attempts to stand quite quickly and should stand within 60 minutes of birth. It will also quickly start showing sucking behaviour as it seeks out the mare’s udder. It will often suck at her hocks or between her front legs and even on any human that gets in the
way! The foal should have found the udder and have started sucking by two hours of age (Fig 5). Maiden mares might be a bit excited or confused at first and might need to be held to allow the foal to nurse for the first few times.
It is important that the foal receives adequate colostrum as this contains vital antibodies to help the foal resist infection. If the mare has run milk prior to foaling, the colostrum may be lost and the foal will need to be given donor colostrum from another mare or a plasma transfusion. Blood taken at more than 24 hours of age should be tested for IgG levels (ideally over 8 g/l) and a plasma transfusion given if the level is low.
The foal should pass urine and droppings (meconium – the first droppings – might be soft) within 12 hours of birth.
Fortunately, most foalings are uneventful. Occasionally nature doesn’t get it right and we have to intervene to avoid disaster. Good preparation can mean the difference between success and failure – or considerable stress – at foaling time.
108 THE OWNER BREEDER
Figure 5: Relaxed mare with foal successfully on suck
Figure 4: Placenta tied up to prevent it being walked on and to assist passage
Figure 3: Mare licking foal
EQUINE SUPPLEMENTS & HEALTHCARE SUPPLEMENTING FOR BREEDING SUCCESS UK: Adam Johnson T: +44 7860 771063 Ire: Lorraine Fradl T: +353 87 2575398 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org www.foranequine.com #OURSCIENCEYOURSUCCESS CONTACT OUR SPECIALIST THOROUGHBRED TEAM: Supplement for breeding success this season
Vet Forum: The Expert View
Covering the bases: preparing a mare for the breeding shed
With the breeding season just around the corner, Phil Haworth, Stud Manager at Whitsbury Manor Stud, home of high-flying stallions Showcasing and Havana Grey, offers some useful advice to mare owners regarding walking mares in to be covered
The most important thing is being organised. Mare owners should speak with the stallion stud well in advance of the covering date, ideally in January before the breeding season starts, so that they know what is required.
When the stallion contract is sent out, all the relevant paperwork goes with it, although it’s not always read thoroughly. We have spent time and effort making it as straightforward as possible. It contains breeding guidelines and is simple to understand.
Every breeder should then relay the information in the breeding guidelines to their chosen repro vet, so everyone understands the requirements. Communication is vital for mare owners dealing with stallion studs, especially if they are unfamiliar with the process, to ensure there are no issues ahead of the proposed covering. If in doubt, pick up the phone and call us. We’re here to help.
The mare owner should always call the office to let us know their mare is in season and close to needing covering, then have the mare checked by their vet. The repro vet should be able to provide a timeframe for when the mare needs covering. A slot is usually arranged within a couple of days, although sometimes we get a call in the morning to request a covering the same day, which isn’t helpful when working with busy stallions.
The process for walk-in mares is slick and should be fairly straightforward. It’s basically in and out in ten to 15 minutes. A benefit of the Covid era is that box drivers are requested to remain in their vehicles while the covering is taking place. After all, it’s not a spectator sport.
It’s important for mare owners to check that the mare has ovulated within
48 hours of cover. If they don’t ovulate, the mare will need to come back for a cross cover. Likewise, if the mare is scanned not in foal after the first cover, we need to be informed with a view to getting her booked in for a repeat cover. It’s not much help calling up on the day saying: “My mare isn’t in foal and needs covering this afternoon!”
Our stallions cover four mares each day, at 8am, midday, 4pm and 9pm. From the middle of February to the end of May it’s non-stop, seven days a week. You have to put the graft in to get the reward. If you don’t get mares in foal, you don’t get paid and don’t make stallions. Soldiers on the ground for our stallions is the name of the game.
At the end of the day the breeding guidelines we have in place are to protect our stallions and clients’ mares. If a stallion picks up a venereal issue
from a mare on May 31 it’s not the end of the world, but if it’s February 15 that’s his season kiboshed.
Whitsbury has around 120 of its own mares. All being well we’ll hope to have around 550 mares covered this season, including walk-ins and seasonal boarders.
Anything with animals can go wrong at the last minute so it’s important to be as well prepared as possible. Good organisation, pre-planning and timekeeping is vital, along with employing the services of a good reproductive vet who knows what they are doing.
Immediate aftercare is also important – basic horse husbandry skills are key. The less stress the mare is under, the better. A happy and content mare has a better chance of conceiving and delivering a healthy foal.
110 THE OWNER BREEDER
The breeding season begins in February
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The Finish Line with Wayne Clifford
The names of Wayne Clifford and his company Bathwick Tyres have been a familiar sight on racecards for 30-odd years, both on the Flat and over jumps. Clifford sold Bathwick Tyres four years ago after growing it to 31 sites, the expansion having in no small part been down to his sponsorship of hundreds of races in the West Country, but his involvement in racing as an owner and breeder is undiminished. His recent Ascot Grade 2 winner Coole Cody, successful in three major handicaps at Cheltenham, is one of the most popular chasers in training and was a winner at the recent ROA Horseracing Awards in the National Hunt Special Achievement category. Annsam is an up-and-coming talent in the jumping ranks, while homebreds Lil Guff and Trusty Rusty were among those to fly the flag on the Flat in 2022.
My wife Sarah decided back in the 1980s that she wanted a racehorse. I said no – but she went ahead and bought one anyway! Our first winner was Super Heights at Wolverhampton, and Stef Higgins rode him. That year  we also had Seaside Minstrel, who won four for me. Once we got involved, I realised how expensive it was going to be and that during the summer break for jumpers you still had to pay upkeep for the horses. As my business was expanding and I needed new warehouses, I decided to be crafty and buy a farm, using the buildings as warehouses and the fields for the horses.
The best thing I ever did for my business was getting involved in racing sponsorship. When you are trying to build a company up you always try to advertise in the right places, but it can be very difficult. I was very lucky when I decided to start sponsoring races, as down here in the south-west it put my name on the map. It was all down to racing sponsorship, rather than adverts on TV or in newspapers. We sponsored hundreds upon hundreds of races, on the Flat and over jumps. We did 33 in one year just at Salisbury. The company was sold a few years ago, but
I didn’t want to stop and so we added Catridge Stud a couple of miles away from us to our Byerley Stud, making the farm up to 300 acres.
We’ve done Flat and jumps almost from the start. I love the jumpers because they are usually around for much longer and you’ve got a chance of competing against the best, which you can’t do usually on the Flat without spending millions. But when you get a winner at a Flat track like Salisbury, without being nasty to jumps tracks, it’s more upmarket and more sociable, although the actual owners over jumps are the most sociable of all and in a different league to anyone else.
It’s nearly all homebreds now so we don’t tend to buy any more. The best we’ve bred was Verse Of Love – he won nine times. In 2022 we were quite successful with Lil Guff, who is with the Kublers, and Trusty Rusty, who is with Tony Carroll. We’ll breed from them one day. The Kublers are young, hungry and very keen. They’ve got new ideas and you can’t fault them. Tony is a proper professional who misses nothing. The horses are spread about, as they are also with Evan Williams of course, as well as Ron Harris, David Pipe and now Milton Harris. They sometimes move about, but I don’t fall out with the trainers. It’s always in the interests of the individual horse.
Byerley Stud has become a commercial operation, run by my granddaughter Laura Clifford-Ward and Ian Bradbury
We have eight mares of our own to breed from – two jumpers and six Flat – and we’ve just had our best foal sale yet, selling one by Mohaather out of Sweet Cecily for 90,000 guineas, which was a nice profit on the stallion fee. Along with the mares themselves are their offspring and all told I think there are over 120 horses on the stud right now, with the rest all here for ownerbreeders. I think we are due about 52 foals,
so it’s going to be hectic for the staff.
Coole Cody was one we bought, for just £5,200, but Annsam, who won a big prize at Ascot last December was bred here out of Bathwick Annie, who we raced ourselves and is still with us at 26. She’s one of 11 retired mares we have here on the stud because what else do you do with them? We live on the premises so we see them every day – that’s part of the joy of it all.
Coole Cody is the sort of horse an owner dreams of – he’s been incredible I was over the moon with his win at the ROA Horseracing Awards. He’s won four times at Cheltenham, and when he won the Grade 2 at Ascot in November it was his ninth win all told. When he first tried fences he just didn’t seem to jump, so I gave him a change of scenery. First time out for Evan Williams we were just hoping for a nice day out, but he won by ten lengths. It was very strange when he won the Paddy Power Gold Cup, as it was during lockdown and there were only a handful of us there watching him. When he won the Racing Post Gold Cup last December I fell over in my excitement, as I’d been pacing about and then tripped over while running up the hill with him. Winning the Plate there in March was extra special as he was headed but just wouldn’t give in. We’ll hand pick races for him and the second he tells us he’s had enough he’ll come home for good.
Quite a few owners are going abroad these days and I can see why as there’s a lot more prize-money. I agree with those who are saying there’s too much racing; I’d like to see it scaled down to provide better prize-money for the races that remain. I’ve looked at racing abroad myself, but it’s not for me. I like to have my horses close to me, and I wouldn’t get the same enjoyment. Whether I have one running in the 9.10pm at Wolverhampton or at Royal Ascot, I’ll be there, but I wouldn’t want to go to France to watch one.
112 THE OWNER BREEDER
Interview: Graham Dench
Coole Cody: winner of nine races and over £340,000 in Wayne Clifford’s famous silks
CHATEAU Winner of the Listed 2 yo Rose Bowl Stakes in 2022 CHIPOTLE Dual Listed winning 2 yo in 2021 EL CABALLO Winner of the Gr.2 Sandy Lane Stakes & Listed Spring Cup in 2022 £10,000 1ST OCT SLF HAVANA GREY Gr.1 winner & Champion GB First Season Sire Proven source of 2yo speed with a higher % winners to runners than Kodiac, Dark Angel, Mehmas, Dandy Man, Night Of Thunder, Showcasing, Starspangledbanner, Exceed And Excel, etc. Scan here Contact Hannah Wall or Alice Thurtle at Tweenhills E: firstname.lastname@example.org E: email@example.com T: +44 (0) 1452 700177 Sire of 27 Stakes horses including...
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