Zac Spirit named Singapore's Champion Sprinter

Flying Spur may be two years retired from stud duties, but he’s proving as reluctant to leave centre stage as baby boomers are to give way to Generations X, Y and Z.

 The latest evidence of that is this week’s naming of Zac Spirit as Singapore’s Champion Sprinter of 2014.

The splendidly consistent gelding had a terrific year, winning four and placing in three of his 7 starts between 19 January and 16 November, most notably the $S500,000 Lion City Cup 1200m Sgp-1 in 1:08.78 on 27 April. He subsequently finished third behind Lucky Nine & Emperor Max in the $1 million Krisflyer International Sprint G1 in May.

Zac Spirit, bred by Newhaven Park Stud & Colin Tidy and trained by Cliff Brown for Andy Wong’s Zac Stable, has won or placed in 14 of his 15 starts for prizemoney of more than $S940,000 – a handsome return on the $140,000 Brown paid for him at the 2011 Inglis Easter Sale.

His dam Kidman (by Quest for Fame) is a great-grand-daughter of Summoned, dam of Group 1 winner & sire Zeditave and four other Group winners. Kidman’s other descendants include Group 1 winners Melito, Greys Inn and Norzita, and Group 2 winner Jet Spur, also by Flying Spur.

Zac Spirit’s yearling three-quarter brother was the top-priced colt by Redoute’s Choice at the recent Magic Millions Gold Coast Sale, where he was knocked down for $720,000 to James Harron Bloodstock and James Moynihan.

It’s been a very good 12 months for Flying Spur. He celebrated his 12th international Group 1 winner last weekend when Sacred Star won the WRC Telegraph H. G1 in New Zealand, and has also been represented over the past year by stakeswinners Mushreq (in Dubai) and Gold Force (MRC Inglis 2YO Premier S. (R) LR).

Their efforts have been supported by Flying Spur’s eight other stakes performers in the past year, among them Traveston Girl (2nd, MRC Thousand Guineas G1) and Group-placed Ataab (South Africa), Hazard, Recoinage, That’s A Good Idea (Australia) & The Glitzy One (New Zealand).

A top 10 sire in Singapore during 2014, the champion son of Danehill accumulated $4.3 million prizemoney in Australia’s 2013/14 season, and finished 5th on the Australian Broodmare Sires’ list with $8.1 million and nine stakeswinners. His reputation as a broodmare sire, already well-established, was enhanced last Spring by his 53rd stakeswinner, and fifth Group 1 winner in that role, the Victoria Derby winner Preferment.

Although overshadowed by Redoute’s Choice as a sire of sires, Flying Spur has eight stakes-siring sons, and the best of them, Casino Prince, has already left his own champion, four-time Group 1 winner All Too Hard, now receiving an excellent stud opportunity at Vinery.

With his sons & daughters making their own marks, and more than 230 named foals in his final three crops, the youngest of which are now 2YOs, Flying Spur’s time on stage is a long way from finished yet.

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