On the opening day of Royal Ascot, champion 2YO colt & 4-time Gr1-winning former Darley shuttler Shamardal (Giant's Causeway-Helsinki, by Machiavellian) celebrated an elite race success when 4YO Irish-bred entire Blue Point (Shamardal-Scarlett Rose, by Royal Applause) scored a minor upset when overhauling the leaders in the dying stages to win the prestigious Gr1 King's Stand Stakes (5 furlongs), defeating Battaash & Mabs Cross. Billed as a two-horse race between Battaash and star US filly Lady Aurelia, it was Blue Point who emerged victorious registering a well-deserved top-flight win for Godolphin and trainer Charlie Appleby. "He brings his A game here," Appleby told Racing Post. "The stiff track suits him. I’ve always thought a lot of this horse since his two-year-old career." Appleby added: "Plenty of pace suits him too. William gave him a copybook ride. He got a lovely lead into him and picked up well." Blue Point advanced his record to 6 wins (including the Gr2 Gimcrack Stakes) and 5 placings (including the Gr1 Middle Park Stakes & Gr1 Dewhurst Stakes) from 13 starts for £740,526 in earnings.
At Ascot in the UK overnight, champion 2YO colt & 4-time Gr1-winning former Darley shuttler Shamardal (Giant's Causeway-Helsinki, by Machiavellian) added a Group success when 3YO Irish-bred colt Blue Point (Shamardal-Scarlett Rose, by Royal Applause) scored by 1.5 lengths in course record time for trainer Charlie Appleby in the Gr3 Pavilion Stakes (6 furlongs), defeating Harry Angel & Mubtasim. Blue Point, who mixed it with top company as a juvenile, improved his record to 4 wins (including the Gr2 Gimcrack Stakes) and 3 placings (including the Gr1 Middle Park Stakes & Gr1 Dewhurst Stakes) from 7 starts for £313,393 earnings. "I'm not going to start changing my opinion of him - he's the quickest horse in the yard and always has been,” trainer Charlie Appleby told Sky Sports. “We'll head straight to Royal Ascot. I think he deserves to be there and I think he's a very live contender.
The Tattersalls December Foal Sale got off to a solid start at Newmarket with a colt by Cheveley Park Stud resident stallion Kyllachy (Pivotal) topping the opening day's session when selling for 48,000 guineas. A total of 260 lots were sold for 2,102,350 guineas, at an average of 11,243 guineas and a median of 8,000 guineas. Consigned by Brook Stud, the Kyllachy colt is out of the Royal Applause mare Amicable Terms, the dam of two winners and a half-sister to the Japanese Listed winner Kei Woman from the family of French Classic winner Riverman. A son of Gr1 performed sire Gregorian (Clodovil) achieved the second highest price on Day 1 of the Tattersalls December Foal Sale when selling to the farm that stand the freshman sire, Rathasker Stud, for 47,000 guineas. Consigned by Maywood Stud, the February foal is out of winning mare Miskin Diamond, a half-sister to Gr1 Phoenix Stakes-placed Catch A Glimpse, the dam of US Gr3 winner Successful Outlook.
At Newmarket in the UK, former Coolmore shuttler and triple Gr1-winning champion European sire Galileo (Sadler's Wells-Urban Sea, by Miswaki) celebrated an elite success when 2YO Irish-bred colt Churchill (Galileo-Meow, by Storm Cat) scored by 1.25 lengths for trainer Aidan O'Brien in the Gr1 Dewhurst Stakes (7 furlongs) for 2YOs, over fellow 2YO colt and stable-mate Lancaster Bomber (War Front-Sun Shower, by Indian Ridge) & Blue Point (Shamardal-Scarlett Rose, by Royal Applause). Owned by the Coolmore triumvirate of Michael Tabor, Derrick Smith & Mrs John Magnier, Churchill improved his record to 5 wins (including the Gr1 National Stakes & Gr2 Futurity Stakes) and 1 placing from 6 starts for €595,025 earnings. Such was the dominant nature of Churchill's victory that his price for next year's English 2000 Guineas firmed into 2-1. "He's a very relaxed horse and doesn't do a lot in front," O'Brien told Racing Post. "He has a super mind on him and has plenty of pace, so we'll look forward to next year with him. We'll have a chat to lads but he'll be a nice horse to bring back here next May."
At Newmarket in the UK, Coolmore's multiple Gr1-winning shuttler & former star Australian sprinter Choisir (Danehill Dancer-Great Selection, by Lunchtime) celebrated an elite success when 2YO Irish-bred colt The Last Lion (Choisir-Mala Mala, by Brief Truce) scored a surprise three-quarter of a length win for trainer Mark Johnston in the Gr1 Middle Park Stakes (6 furlongs) for 2YOs, over fellow 2YO colts Blue Point (Shamardal-Scarlett Rose, by Royal Applause) & Mehmas (Acclamation-Lucina, by Machiavellian). An €82,000 purchase at the 2015 Goffs Orby Yearling Sale, The Last Lion improved his record to 4 wins (including the Gr3 Sirenia Stakes & Listed Dragon Stakes) and 6 placings (including the Gr2 Flying Childers Stakes, Gr2 Gimcrack Stakes & Gr2 Royal Ascot Norfolk Stakes) from 10 starts for €230,727 earnings. "What a fantastic horse! It has been fairy story right from the beginning," trainer Mark Johnston told Racing Post. "When I saw this horse at Goffs from the same family, I phoned John Brown [owner] and I said, 'You've got to have this one' - and he did." The Last Lion is now a 10-1 chance for next year's Gr1 Commonwealth Cup at Royal Ascot.
At York in the UK, European champion 4-time Gr1-winning former Darley shuttler Shamardal (Giant's Causeway-Helsinki, by Machiavellian) added a Group success when 2YO Irish-bred colt Blue Point (Shamardal-Scarlett Rose, by Royal Applause) scored by 3-lengths for trainer Charlie Appleby in the Gr2 Gimcrack Stakes (6 furlongs) for 2YOs, over 2YO US-bred colt Mokarris (More Than Ready-Limonar, by Street Cry) & fellow 2YO Irish-bred colt The Last Lion (Choisir-Mala Mala, by Brief Truce). This was the first stakes victory for the highly regarded Blue Point who improved his record to 3 wins and 1 placing (the Gr2 Richmond Stakes) from 4 starts for £175,525 earnings. Appleby said the Godolphin colt would head towards the Gr1 Middle Park Stakes (6 furlongs) at Newmarket on 24 September. "That was most impressive and I think the logical thing to do is to go straight to the Middle Park, but we'll get him back home and have a chat," Appleby told At The Races. "At this stage he looks all speed. It would be great if he stayed a mile, but at this stage it looks like he's going to be a sprinter."
On day two of the Glorious Goodwood racing festival in the UK, Darley's former Champion Australian Sire Exceed And Excel (Danehill-Patrona, by Lomond) added a Group success when 2YO colt Yalta (Exceed and Excel-Lacily, by Elusive Quality) scored by 3-lengths for trainer Mark Johnston in the Gr3 Molecomb Stakes (5 furlongs) for 2YOs, over fellow 2YO colts The Last Lion (Choisir-Mala Mala, by Brief Truce) & Global Applause (Mayson-Crown, by Royal Applause). This was the first stakes victory for Yalta who improved his record to 3 wins from 5 starts for £60,158 earnings. Trainer Mark Johnston said he was surprised that Yalta was able to get the better of stable-mate The Last Lion whom the stable was adamant was the better five furlong horse. "I couldn't really believe it until about halfway through the race today when he was leading them a merry dance and I was pretty sure he would come home strongly, which he did," Johnston told Sky Sports. "He had shown tremendous speed in his races, but I was amazed. I know what The Last Lion is like and to be leading him by three or four lengths when he had not even asked him I knew the writing was on the wall at halfway." He added: "It is obviously disappointing for the owners of The Last Lion. They didn't expect it and we didn't. We thought The Last Lion was the out-and-out five-furlong horse but he has been put in his place."
At Newmarket in the UK overnight, Haunui Farm shuttler Iffraaj (Zafonic-Pastorale, by Nureyev) added a Group success when 3YO Irish-bred filly Nathra (Iffraaj-Rada, by Danehill) scored by 1.5 lengths for trainer John Gosden in the Gr3 Nell Gwyn Stakes (7 furlongs) fro 3YO fillies, over fellow fillies Squash (Pastoral Pursuits-Super Midge, by Royal Applause) & Robanne (Paco Boy-Arctic Song, by Charnwood Forest). This was the first stakes victory for Nathra who took her record to 3 wins and 1 placing (the Gr1 Fillies' Mile) from 4 starts for £165,858 earnings. Trainer John Gosden said Nathra would head either to the 1000 Guineas in a fortnight or wait for the French equivalent. "She travelled into the race well and we're very happy," Gosden told Racing Post. "It pays a huge compliment to Minding." He added: "This filly is engaged at Newmarket and Deauville and we'll leave those options open."
Darley's Gr1-winning shuttler Poet's Voice (Dubawi-Bright Tiara, by Chief's Crown) celebrated his first stakes winner when 2YO colt Whitman (Poet's Voice-Sundrop, by Sunday Silence) saluted in the Listed Champion 2YO Trophy (6 furlongs) at Ripon in the UK on Monday. Trained by Mark Johnston for owner-breeder Sheik Mohammed, Whitman took his record to 3 wins from 5 starts when scoring a fighting head victory over 2YO filly Chiringuita (Hard Spun-Silver Games, by Verglas) & fellow 2YO colt Still On Top (Royal Applause-Poulaine Bleue, by Bertolini). Whitman, cleverly named after the famous American poet Walt Whitman, is out of the Gr3-winning Sunday Silence mare Sundrop and hails from the Flame Of Tara family that includes champion filly Salsabil and successful sires Marju, Hemingway, Second Empire, Balestrini, and Ihtiram. Poet's Voice will stand his second season at Darley's Kelvinside Stud this spring at a fee of $11,000.
At Royal Randwick in Sydney, former Darley shuttler Shamardal added a Gr2 success when the gelding Delectation (Shamardal-Grace and Power, by More Than Ready) scored by a nose for trainer Chris Waller in the $500,000 Gr2 Arrowfield Stud 3YO Sprint (1200m), from fast-finishing filly Bring Me The Maid (Sebring-Maid For Me, by Belong To Me) & the colt Rekindled Power (Redoute's Choice-Rekindled Applause, by Royal Applause). A $250,000 yearling consigned by Vinery Stud at the 2013 Inglis Easter Sale, Delectation took his record to 4 wins & 5 placings (including the Gr3 Eskimo Prince Stakes, Gr1 Coolmore Stud Stakes & Gr2 Roman Consul Stakes) from 14 starts for $759,775 earnings.
Trainer Paul Messara says he is delighted with the condition of highly promising colt Rekindled Power (Redoute's Choice-Rekindled Applause, by Royal Applause) ahead of tomorrow's Gr2 Sandown Guineas (1600m), but admits to being slightly concerned by the 3YOs wide starting gate, reports horseracing.com.au. Rekindled Power's usual racing pattern is to get back and run home hard, but Messara believes that barrier 12 may make jockey Dwayne Dunn's task of settling the son of Redoute's Choice in a handier position more difficult. "I would have preferred to drawn in and I think that it is going to map awkwardly for us," Messara said. "I think that we will be midfield or a little bit further back with only three or four behind us and it does make it difficult because I think the two favourites in the race Lord Aspen and Stratum Star probably get a lovely run from their barriers and there doesn't look to be a huge amount of speed on paper." Rekindled Power, who is a three-quarter brother to dual Gr2 winner Rekindled Interest, had a confidence boosting win at Bendigo on 29 October when powering clear over the concluding stages to score by 3.5-lengths in a 1400m maiden. "He has come through it well," Messara said. "It was a nice maiden victory and he ran a very good time on the day and for a maiden I think that it rated pretty well. The horse just lacks a bit of race craft and that is what we were there to do, try to educate him a bit more and do it in a race where there is no pressure." He added, "He came out of the Brian Crowley in Sydney and there has been a bit of form out of that race and I think he has some natural improvement to take into this."
Meanwhile, Rekindled Power (Redoute's Choice-Rekindled Applause, by Royal Applause) has shown enough talent to earn his place in Saturday's Gr2 Sandown Guineas (1600m) but trainer Paul Messara is adamant the well-bred colt will be an even better horse come the autumn, reports skyracing.com.au. The 3YO, who is a three-quarter brother to dual Gr2 winner Rekindled Interest, had a confidence boosting win at Bendigo 13 days ago which confirmed plans to head towards the Guineas. The son of Redoute's Choice looked a class horse in the making when scoring easily by 3.5-lengths in a 1400m maiden. "We'd expect him to run a good race but whether or not the race is coming a bit soon for him in terms of just his maturity and know-how, I guess we'll find that out on Saturday," Messara said. The Randwick and Rosehill Guineas are possible autumn targets if Rekindled Power progresses as his trainer expects. "He's a nice horse and did a really nice job at Bendigo," Messara said. "It was only a maiden but he did it very well. He probably just lacks the race craft at the moment and is learning all the time, but I certainly wanted to give him a crack at a race like the Sandown Guineas and that's kind of what we set him for." Messara added, "It looks like a tough enough race at a quick glance, but he's certainly a horse with plenty of potential although I probably think autumn is going to be more of his time."
Cappella Sansevero (Showcasing-Madam President, by Royal Applause) will be given another opportunity at Gr1 level after winning the Gr3 Round Towers Stakes (6 furlongs) at The Curragh on Sunday. The 3YOs only Gr1 appearance to date resulted in a third placing behind Dick Whittington and Kool Kompany in the Gr1 Phoenix Stakes last month. Owners Qatar Racing are keen to give the son of Haunui Farm shuttler Showcasing another chance in top company after his comfortable 0.75-length win over Rapid Applause and War Envoy on Sunday. "It's all systems go for the Middle Park," said trainer Ger Lyons. "The one I thought we might win was the Phoenix, but I'd gladly take the Middle Park! He's the right horse to go for it. He's not ground dependent." Capella Sansevero has now won 4 of his 7 starts for £116,910 earnings.
At The Curragh in Ireland, Windsor Park Stud's multiple Gr1-winning shuttler Rip Van Winkle (Galileo-Looking Back, by Stravinsky) celebrated his first Gr1 winner when 2YO colt Dick Whittingon (Rip Van Winkle-Sahara Sky, by Danehill) scored by 0.5-length for trainer Aidan O'Brien in the €200,000 Gr1 Keeneland Phoenix Stakes (6 furlongs) for 2YOs, over fellow 2YO colts Kool Kompany (Jeremy-Absolutely Cool, by Indian Ridge) & Cappella Sansevero (Showcasing-Madam President, by Royal Applause). Dick Whittington took his record to 3 wins (including the Gr3 Anglesey Stakes) and 3 placings (including the Listed Ascot Chesham Stakes) from 6 starts for £148,154 earnings. Rip Van Winkle, a 3-time Gr1 winner of the Juddmonte International, Sussex Stakes & Queen Elizabeth II Stakes, is set to return to Windsor Park for the upcoming breeding season at a fee of NZ$16,000. Trainer Aidan O'Brien, who has won six of the last ten renewals of the Phoenix, told racingpost.com: " He's a tough, hardy horse and he showed that today. The ground wasn't ideal but he handled it well. The way he won today you'd have to think he'll get a mile. He's had a busy time of it and we won't be in a panic to make plans."
At The Curragh in Ireland, Windsor Park Stud's multiple Gr1-winning shuttler Rip Van Winkle (Galileo-Looking Back, by Stravinsky) added a Group success when 2YO colt Dick Whittingon (Rip Van Winkle-Sahara Sky, by Danehill) scored by 0.5-length for trainer Aidan O'Brien in the €65,000 Gr3 Anglesey Stakes (6 furlongs) for 2YOs, over fellow 2YO colts Toscanini (Shamardal-Tuzla, by Panoramic) & Rapid Appluase (Royal Applause-Madam Ninette, by Mark of Esteem). Dick Whittington's victory provided his freshman sire Rip Van Winkle with his second stakes winner following the win of I Am Beautiful in the Gr3 Grangecon Stud Stakes at the same track last month. Dick Whittington took his record to 2 wins and 3 placings (including the Listed Ascot Chesham Stakes) from 5 starts for £55,419 earnings. Rip Van Winkle, a 3-time Gr1 winner of the Juddmonte International, Sussex Stakes & Queen Elizabeth II Stakes, is set to return to Windsor Park for the upcoming breeding season at a fee of NZ$16,000.
At Royal Ascot in the UK, Rosemont Stud's 4-time Gr1-winning stallion Starspangledbanner (Choisir-Gold Anthem, by Made of Gold) celebrated his first stakes winner when the aptly named 2YO colt The Wow Signal (Starspangledbanner-Muravka, by High Chaparral) scored by 1.75-lengths for trainer John Quinn in the Gr2 Coventry Stakes (1200m) for 3YOs, over fellow 2YO colts Capella Sansevero (Showcasing-Madam President, by Royal Applause) & Jungle Cat (Iffraaj-Mike's Wildcat, by Forest Wildcat). The Wow Signal took his record to 2 wins from 2 starts for £140,309 earnings. Sent off a well-supported 5-1 joint-favourite, The Wow Signal jumped smartly and disputed the lead for most of the way before letting down with a good turn of foot and sprinting clear over the concluding stages. The exciting 2YO was purchased by Sheikh Joaan Al Thani after a stunning debut win at Ayr last month when cruising to a 9-length victory. Winning trainer John Quinn told racingpost.com: "He has come and beaten the best colts available today and he has been up there all the way, he wasn't held up to run a race he was right there on the speed. I think he deserves a lot of credit. He didn't just come from out of the pack he was there all the time. He could have capitulated but at the line he was going away."
Finjaan (Royal Applause-Alhufoof, by Dayjur), a new resident at Gazeley Stud in Newmarket this year, is off to a good start with his first mares tested in foal, reports bloodstock.racingpost.com. Among those with positive pregnancy scans are Hanamizuki, a Motivator half-sister to Albany Stakes winner Habaayib, Alzahra, an Exceed And Excel half-sister to Firth of Clyde Stakes runner-up Mary's Daughter, and Lady Farah, an Exceed And Excel half-sister to Rose Bowl Stakes winner Saxford. Gazeley Stud manager Sam Imrie said: "We were confident he would be highly fertile when his test mare conceived to a very late ovulation but it is always good to have positive results from the early mares in a freshman sire's book." The 8YO son of Royal Applause landed a Glorious Goodwood double when he won the Gr2 Molecomb Stakes at two and the Gr2 Lennox Stakes at three. Joe Grimwade, management consultant to Gazeley Stud, added: "Finjaan has the assets you want in a commercial sire - the speed and precocity to win at Group level over five furlongs at two, the soundness to run in seven black-type races at two and three, including four Group 1s, the quality to get mighty close to winning the Dewhurst and a sire who is both active as well as proven as a sire and grand-sire of sires." Finjaan is standing his first season at a fee of £3,000.
After 16 years at the helm, Joe Grimwade is set to leave his position as manager of the Royal Studs and hand over the reins to Matthew Hill, who moves from Sheikh Mohammed's Darley operation, reports bloodstock.racingpost.com. During Grimwade's tenure at the Royal Studs in Sandringham the stallion operation has welcomed the popular Royal Applause and Derby hero Motivator, sire of the remarkable Arc winner Treve. Dubawi's triple Gr1-winning son Al Kazeem, in whom the Queen and Sheikh Joaan Al Thani are the principal shareholders, has joined the stud's roster and will begin his stallion career next year. "It has been a huge privilege to be responsible for The Royal Studs over the past 16 years," Grimwade said in a statement. "The Queen's support and guidance has enabled me and my team to take the operation forward and I am enormously proud of what we have achieved. In particular, our efforts to bring Motivator through difficult challenges have enabled him to continue a very successful stud career - highlighted by the outstanding Treve." Grimwade added: "The Royal Studs are at the start of a very exciting new chapter; it is an appropriate moment for me to pass on the baton to a person who is both very deserving of the wonderful opportunity and well equipped to take the stud forward." Hill, who graduated from the National Stud student training course when it was under Grimwade's guidance, said: "After 20 fantastic years at Darley I'm obviously extremely honoured and excited to have been offered this opportunity."
At Longchamp in France, NZ Haunui Farm shuttler Iffraaj (Zafonic-Pastorale, by Nureyev) added a group success when 3YO filly Dibajj (Iffraaj-Goleta, by Royal Applause) dead-heated for trainer Alain De Royer-Dupre in the Gr3 Prix du Petit Couvert (5 furlongs) for 3YO+, with 6YO gelding Mirza (Oasis Dream-Millyant, by Primo Dominie) over 4YO gelding Catcall (One Cool Cat-Jurata, by Polish Precedent). This was Dibajj's first stakes victory and took her record to 3 wins & 5 placings (including the last-start Gr3 Prix de Meautry) from 11 starts for €94,500 earnings.
At Sandown in the UK, dual Gr1-winning former Australian champion 1st-season sire Exceed And Excel (Danehill-Patrona, by Lomond) added a UK juvenile black-type success when Sheikh Ahmed bin Rashid Al Maktoum's colt Morawij (Exceed And Excel-Sister Moonshine, by Piccolo) scored by a neck for trainer Richard Varian in the £37,000 Listed Scurry Stakes (5 furlongs) for 3YOs, over the fillies March (Dutch Art-Royal Pardon, by Royal Applause) & Sandreamer (Oasis Dream-Alsharq, by Machiavellian). Morawij took his record to 3 wins (also including the Listed Dragon Stakes at Sandown) & a runner-up (in the Gr3 Molecomb Stakes at Goodwood) from 8 starts.
At Nottingham in the UK, triple European Gr1-winning former Coolmore shuttler Oratorio (Danehill-Mahrah, by Vaguely Noble) added a black-type success when 3YO filly Scream Blue Murder (Oratorio-Holly Blue, by Bluebird) had a head to spare at the line for trainer Tommy Stack in the £40,000 Listed Kilvington Stakes (6 furlongs) for filllies & mares 3YO+, over fellow 3YO filly Hoyam (Royal Applause-Christmas Tart, by Danetime) & 4YO mare Restiadargent (Kendargent-Restia, by Montjeu). Winning at stakes level for the first time, Scream Blue Murder took her record to 2 wins & 2 placings (including runner-up in the Listed Woodlands Stakes at Naas in her last start) from 5 starts.
At the conclusion of the 4-day Tattersalls December Foal Sale, Paul Fudge's Waratah Thoroughbreds had acquired 3 foals. The filly trio – each with residual value as broodmares down the track – was headed by the 450,000 guineas Oasis Dream foal out of triple Gr1-winning German mare Albanova. Costing 150,000 guineas was a Dubawi foal out of Irish-bred stakes-winning mare Lady Eclaire, while Fudge also secured a 160,000 guineas Royal Applause foal out of UK-bred Danehill mare Like A Dame, dam of this year's 3YO stakes-winner Lady's First.
USA Gr1 winner Acclamation (Unusual Heat-Winning In Style, by Silveyville) has been retired to Old English Rancho in California at a fee of US$20,000. The newly retired sire is not to be confused with British-bred Gr2-winning stallion Acclamation (Royal Applause-Princess Athena, by Ahonoora) whose offspring included Swettenham Stud's Equiano (Acclamation-Entente Cordiale, by Ela-Mana-Mou). Part owner Bud Johnston told drf.com that there was a chance of a return to the track in 2013 if he recovers from a strained ligament: "We need to evaluate the injury and see how it heals. There is a possibility we can do it. The injury has to be healed 100 percent. The vets say in four or five months it should be 100 percent. If we plan on bringing him back, we'd start jogging every day and breeding him when we want to." Acclamation won 11 of his 30 starts including six Gr1 wins – three in the Gr1 Charles Whittingham Memorial Handicap (2010, 2011, 2012) – as well as the Gr1 Eddie Read Stakes (2011 & 2012) & 2011's Gr1 Pacific Classic Stakes.
In UK bloodstock news, County Cork-based Rathbarry Stud has revealed that the fees for its entire stallion roster for 2013, including "flagship sire" Acclamation (Royal Applause-Princess Athena, by Ahonoora – sire of Swettenham Stud stallion Equiano - will remain "unchanged from 2012", reports racingpost.com. Lilbourne Lad, a Gr2-winning son of Acclamation stays at €7,500 while Tagula (Taufan-Twin Island, by Standaan), sire of Blue Gum Farm shuttler Canford Cliffs, holds solid at €4,000.
At Doncaster in the UK, former European Champion 1st Season Sire & Victorian shuttler Invincible Spirit (Green Desert-Rafha, by Kris) added a further black-type success when Invincible Warrior (Invincible Spirit-Riotous Applause, by Royal Applause) scored by 0.5-length for trainer Brian Meehan in the £23,000 Listed Doncaster Stakes (6 furlongs) for 2YO's, over Emell (Medicean-Londonnetdotcom, by Night Shift) & Taayel (Tamayuz-Sakhee's Song, by Sakhee). Invincible Warrior took his record to 2 wins and 1 placing from 3 starts.
Following the recent retirement of twin brother Richard from the saddle, 49-year-old champion hoop Michael Hills, with "over 2,000 winners" has also opted to end his riding career, reports sportinglife.com. He displayed all his natural ability in guiding home Shaamit (Mtoto-Shomoose, by Habitat) in the 1996 Gr1 Epsom Derby when still an apprentice, and among many stars he piloted were dual Gr1 winners Royal Applause (Waajib-Flying Melody, by Auction Ring), leading New Zealand stallion Pentire (Be My Guest-Gull Nook, by Mill Reef) and Equiano (Acclamation-Entente Cordiale, by Ela-Mana-Mou). The prospect of riding leading 2013 1000 Guineas chance Just The Judge (Lawman-Faraday Light, by Rainbow Quest), whom he saluted on in Saturday's Gr2 Rockfel Stakes, was tempting but he was resolved, "The last thing I wanted was to go on too far. I would hate people to be walking off the stand going "this guy should give up... I'd love to hang around for the filly (Just The Judge) next year and other horses but when the time's right, I think the time's right".
Darley's former Australian Champion Sire & World Champion Miler Lonhro (Octagonal-Shadea, by Straight Strike) added a UK black-type success at Newbury when Australian-bred 5YO gelding Scarf (Lonhro-Muffle, by Quest For Fame) scored by a neck for trainer Saeed bin Suroor in the Listed Dubai Duty Free Cup (7 furlongs) for 3YOs+, over 3YO colts Producer (Dutch Art-River Saint, by Irish River) & Saigon (Royal Applause-Luanshya, by First Trump). A winner of 7 races while trained in Australia, Scarf took his record to 9 wins & 4 runners-up from 24 starts.
At Ripon in the UK, dual Gr1-winning former shuttler Holy Roman Emperor (Danehill-L'On Vite, by Secretariat) added a black-type success when the colt Deauville Prince (Holy Roman Emperor-Queen of Deauvilly, by Diableneyev) scored by 1.25-lengths for trainer Tom Dascombe over the filly Melody Of Love (Haafhd-Tamzin, by Hernando) & fellow colt Botanic Garden (Royal Applause-Rock Lily, by Rock of Gibraltar) in the Listed Champion 2YO Trophy (1200m) for juveniles. The first foal for his dam, Deauville Prince took his record to 2 wins and a runner-up from 5 starts.
Dual Gr1-winning former shuttler Holy Roman Emperor (Danehill-L'On Vite, by Secretariat) added a UK group success overnight when juvenile daughter Maureen (Holy Roman Emperor out of Exotic Mix, by Linamix) scored a 2.25-lengths victory over fellow fillies Sandreamer (Oasis Dream out of Alsharq, by Machiavellian) & Hoyam (Royal Applause out of Christmas Tart, by Danetime) in the Gr3 Princess Margaret Stakes (6 furlongs) for 2YO fillies. Maureen took her record to 2 wins & a runner-up from 3 starts for £44,813 earnings. For in-depth race, winner & runner details click on the race name in this item.
Dual Gr1-winning former Australian champion 1st-season sire Exceed And Excel (Danehill-Patrona, by Lomond) added a UK juvenile black-type success (& 51st individual stakes-winner world-wide) when Sheikh Ahmed bin Rashid Al Maktoum's favoured colt Morawij (Exceed And Excel-Sister Moonshine, by Piccolo) scored a 2.25-lengths victory in the £23,000 (A$37,000) Listed Dragon Stakes (5 furlongs) for 2YOs at Sandown Park. Morawij (ridden by Neil Callan for trainer Roger Varian) defeated Irish-bred filly Lasilia (Acclamation-Vasilia, by Dansili) & fellow colt Botanic Garden (Royal Applause-Rock Lily, by Rock Of Gibraltar). Morawij was originally a 24,000 guineas (A$40,000) weanling at the 2010 UK Tattersalls December Sale & subsequently a 120,000 guineas (A$198,000) yearling at the 2011 Tattersalls October Sale. Overall he now has 2 wins from 3 starts for £19,327 (A$31,000) earnings.
In Ireland, the 1st mares have been scanned in-foal to Gr2-winning 8YO stallion Lovelace (Royal Applause-Loveleaves, by Polar Falcon ) at Springlodge Stud in County Longford, reported racingpost.com. Lovelace is "the joint-best son of Royal Applause on Racing Post Ratings alongside leading sire Acclamation". On the track he won 9 races, including Germany's Gr2 Oettingen-Rennen (1600m) at Baden-Baden, UK Gr3 Supreme Stakes (7 furlongs) at Goodwood & UK Listed Spring Trophy Stakes (7 furlongs) at Haydock, plus placings in France's Gr3 Prix De La Porte Maillot (1400m) at Longchamp & UK Listed Lady Wulfruna Stakes (7 furlongs) at Wolverhampton twice.
The 1st foal by multiple stakes-placed Irish-bred & UK-based 6YO stallion Mullionmileanhour (Mull Of Kintyre-Lady Lucia, by Royal Applause) is a colt out of stakes-placed Bold Arrangement mare Peyto Princess (a half-sister to smart sprinter Blue Iris) born at Nelson Farm Stud in Devon in England, reported racingpost.com. Mullionmileanhour stands at Hedgeholme Stud in County Durham for £1,250 (A$1,900). On the track, Mullionmileanhour placed in the UK Listed Windsor Castle Stakes (5 furlongs) at Royal Ascot, UK Listed Abernant Stakes (6 furlongs) at Newmarket & UK Listed Cleves Stakes (6 furlongs) at Lingfield Park.
Irish-based agent Tim Hyde paid US$400,000 for a yearling filly by Empire Maker (out of multiple Gr1-winning Royal Applause mare Ticker Tape) consigned by Eaton Sales as agent for breeder Forging Oaks. Hyde confirmed he purchased the filly as a pin-hook prospect & noted: “I like that she was a very good physical & her dam (Ticker Tape) was very, very good.” Ticker Tape herself sold just 2 months ago at the 2011 Keeneland November Sale for US$950,000 (to Japanese buyer Katsumi Yoshida).
In the United Arab Emirates, former shuttler Noverre (Rahy-Danseur Fabuleux, by Northern Dancer) added a black-type success when Irish-bred 7YO gelding Jaasoos (Noverre-Nymphs Echo, by Mujtahid) scored a 2.25-lengths victory in the Listed President Cup (1400m on turf) at Abu Dhabi, after finishing 3rd in this same race in both 2009 & 2010. Jaasoos (ridden by James Doyle for trainer Dhruba Selvaratnam) defeated US-bred fellow 7YO gelding Escape Route (Elusive Quality-Away, by Dixieland Band) & UK-bred 5YO entire FinJaan (Royal Applause-Alhufoof, by Dayjur). Last month Jaasoos also finished runner-up in the UAE Listed National Day Cup (1600m) at Abu Dhabi, a race he previously won in both the 2009 & 2010.
In Ireland, Paul Cashman’s County Cork-based Rathbarry Stud announced the 2012 service fee for Acclamation (who has sired 9 stakes-winners this season, including outstanding 2YO Harbour Watch) will increase by 140% from €15,000 (A$20,300) to €35,000 (A$47,300). Acclamation has 3 sons at stud: Dark Angel (who boasts 26 individual 1st-crop 2YO winners this season); Equiano (who shuttles between Newsells Park in England & Swettenham Stud in Victoria); & new 2YO recruit Lilbourne Lad (a Gr2-winner & Gr1-placed juvenile this season). The 2012 Rathbarry stallion fees are:
Meanwhile Darley announced the 2012 service fees for all its European stallions, with triple Gr1-winning former shuttler Dubawi rising to £75,000 (A$120,000) from £55,000 (A$88,000) in 2011 & just £20,000 (A$32,000) in 2010 “on the back of another successful season which has seen Lucky Nine shine in Hong Kong, Dubawi Heights win at Gr1 level in the US, Monterosso take a Gr2 in Dubai, Secret Admirer strike in a Gr1 in Australia, Dubawi Gold finish runner-up in 2 European Classics & Worthadd win at Group level in Italy” noted racingpost.com. The “other big climber” is former Australian champion 1st-season sire Exceed And Excel “whose fee near doubles to £22,500 (A$36,000) from £12,000 (A$19,200) thanks to Excelebration, Margot Did, triple Gr1-winning southern hemisphere colt Helmet & a strong crop of juveniles”. The 2012 Darley fees are:
Dalham Hall Stud (UK)
Kildangan Stud (Ireland)
Haras du Logis (France)
The Royal Studs, Norfolk (UK)
Japan’s Katsumi Yoshida paid US$950,000 for dual Gr1-winning & dual Gr1-placed UK-bred 10-year-old mare Ticker Tape (Royal Applause-Argent Du Bois, by Silver Hawk) consigned by Eaton Sales as agent for the complete dispersal of Forging Oaks Farms. Ticker Tape (sold in-foal to former shuttler Giant’s Causeway) won both the US Gr1 American Oaks Invitational & Gr1 Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup Stakes.
In Hong Kong, ill-fated former Swettenham Stud stallion Halo Homewrecker (Southern Halo-Marital Spook, by Silver Ghost) added a group success when undefeated Australian-bred 5YO gelding Entrapment (Halo Homewrecker-Miabondialee by Vettori) scored a half-length victory in the HK$2.4 million (A$312,000) Gr3 Sha Tin Sprint Trophy (1000m) at Sha Tin. Unraced for 15 months, former Hong Kong Champion Griffin Entrapment (ridden by Douglas Whyte for Australian trainer John Size) defeated Australian-bred 7-time Gr1-winning former World Champion sprinter, former Hong Kong Horse-Of-The-Year & recently crowned HK Champion Sprinter for the 4th successive season 8YO gelding Sacred Kingdom (Encosta De Lago-Courtroom Sweetie, by Zeditave) & 4YO gelding Let Me Fight (Hawk Wing-Riva Royale, by Royal Applause). Entrapment (originally a $16,000 weanling consigned by Trevannah at the 2007 Magic Millions National Sale & subsequently a NZ$45,000 yearling consigned by Seaton Park at the 2008 NZB Carnival Sale) took his record to 8 wins from 8 starts for HK$5,543,250 (A$720,000) earnings.
UK Cheveley Park Stud's dual Gr1-winning & triple Gr1-placed 7YO freshman stallion Dutch Art (Medicean-Halland Park Lass, by Spectrum) added a juvenile group success when his colt Caspar Netscher (Dutch Art-Bella Cantata, by Singspiel) who had already become his sire’s 2nd 1st-crop stakes-winner with victory last month in the UK Gr2 Gimcrack Stakes (6 furlongs) at York, followed-up with a half-length victory in the UK £60,000 (A$90,000) Gr2 Mill Reef Stakes (6 furlongs) for 2YOs at Newbury. Caspar Netscher (ridden by Kieren Fallon for trainer Alan McCabe) defeated Irish-bred colt Redact (Strategic Prince-Rainbow Java, by Fairy King) & another colt Saigon (Royal Applause-Luanshya, by First Trump). Caspar Netscher was originally a 25,000 guineas (A$39,000) yearling at the 2010 UK Tattersalls October Sale & subsequently a 65,000 guineas (A$101,000) 2YO at this season’s Tattersalls April Sale. Overall he now has 3 wins & 4 placings (including both July’s Gr2 Richmond Stakes over 6 furlongs at Goodwood & Listed Rose Bowl Stakes over 6 furlongs at Newbury, plus June’s Listed Windsor Castle Stakes over 5 furlongs at Royal Ascot) from 8 starts for £139,001 (A$209,000) earnings.
Former Grand Lodge Thoroughbreds shuttler (& runner-up on the US general sires list in 2005, 2009 & 2010) Distorted Humor (Forty Niner-Danzig's Beauty, by Danzig) added a UK juvenile group success when US-bred daughter Shumoos (Distorted Humor-Wile Cat, by Storm Cat) scored by a head in the £34,000 (A$51,000) Gr3 Sirenia Stakes (6 furlongs on all-weather) for 2YOs at Kempton. Shumoos (ridden by Martin Dwyer for trainer Brian Meehan) defeated fellow US-bred filly Vocational (Exceed And Excel-Carry On Katie, by Fasliyev) & the colt Saigon (Royal Applause-Luanshya, by First Trump). Shumoos (a US$375,000 yearling at the 2010 Keeneland September Sale) now has 2 wins & 2 placings (in July’s UK Gr2 Cherry Hinton Stakes over 6 furlongs at Newmarket & June’s Gr2 Queen Mary Stakes over 5 furlongs at Royal Ascot) from 5 starts for £45,115 (A$68,000) earnings.
Waikato Stud's Australian-bred stallion Pins (Snippets-No Finer, by Karou Star) added a US black-type success when NZ-bred 6YO gelding Our Nautique (Pins-French Tide, by Dauphin Fabuleux) scored a 2-lengths victory in the US$56,000 Listed Joseph Grace Handicap (8.5 furlongs on turf) at Santa Rosa in California. Our Nautique (ridden by Kevin Krigger for trainer Jerry Hollendorfer) defeated 8YO entire Bold Chieftain (Chief Seattle-Hooked On Music, by Seattle Dancer) & Irish-bred 7YO entire Whatsthescript (Royal Applause-Grizel, by Lion Cavern). Previously this season Our Nautique (passed-in for NZ$35,000 at the 2007 NZB Select Sale) also won April’s Gr3 San Francisco Mile Stakes (8 furlongs) at Golden Gate Fields & last year he finished 3rd in the Gr3 All American Handicap (9 furlongs) at Golden Gate Fields.