Scarlet Rain wins Sweet Embrace Stakes

Given the manner of Scarlet Rain’s Sweet Embrace Stakes victory last Saturday, Arrowfield’s young sire Manhattan Rain may soon be adding more than a Group 2 winner to his steadily growing record.

An attractive chestnut with four white stockings, Scarlet Rain isn’t hard to find in a field, but she made it easier by sprinting quickly to a clear lead from gate 12.

She rolled along comfortably on her own until jockey Kathy O’Hara asked her to drive clear which she duly did, winning by a length from In The Vanguard to maintain her unbeaten record and boost her prizemoney to $244,500. Vinery Stud’s filly Tale Of Choice (by Redoute’s Choice), bought from Arrowfield at the Inglis Easter Sale, was third, almost three lengths away.

Purchased for $100,000 from Arrowfield’s 2015 Magic Millions consignment by Darby Racing, Scarlet Rain is trained by Gai Waterhouse who also prepared Manhattan Rain to win or place in all three legs of the Sydney 2YO Triple Crown.

The champion trainer already has six Golden Slippers on her record and immediately confirmed, in typically direct fashion, that the filly would take her place in the $3.5 million race on 19 March. 

“How could they doubt her? Does the Slipper fit? Yes.”

Scarlet Rain is the first foal of city-winning 2YO Double Ranga (by Exceed And Excel), a half-sister to stakeswinners Happy Forever & Super Lacuna, from the family of dual Group 1 winner Toorak Toff.

Double Ranga’s second foal, a similarly striking, athletic colt by Starcraft was a $110,000 buy for Robert Roulston at this year’s Magic Millions Sale. The mare also has a weanling full sister to Scarlet Rain, and is in foal to Animal Kingdom.

Scarlet Rain is the sixth stakeswinner, and second Group winner for Manhattan Rain, firmly stamping his patch among Australia’s best stallions from the Class of 2010.

Not A Single Doubt leads Sires' premiership

“It’s surreal,” was how breeder Andrew Ferguson described his experience of watching Extreme Choice win the $1.5 million MRC Blue Diamond S. 1200m G1 on Saturday.

The number 11 gate and being forced to race wide without cover weren’t enough to stop the colt from scoring an outstanding victory in 1:08.95, almost two lengths in front of his stablemate Flying Artie, with the Redoute’s Choice filly Zamzam six lengths away in third place.

Watch Extreme Choice win the MRC Blue Diamond S. G1.

The $900,000 winner’s cheque has swept Extreme Choice’s sire Not A Single Doubt past Street Cry to the head of the Australian General Sires’ premiership with a new figure of $7,244,601. Not A Single Doubt also tops the table by winners (102) and wins (155), and has claimed the No. 1 spot on both the 2YO & 3YO Sires’ lists.

The result was a career highlight for Mick Price who trained the quinella and, with his Bloodstock Manager Luke Wilkinson, bought Extreme Choice for $100,000 from the Bell River Thoroughbreds draft at the 2015 Inglis Classic Sale. 

Bell River, near Wellington in central NSW, is owned & managed by Andrew Ferguson and his wife Georgie who bred Extreme Choice in partnership with good friends Lloyd Walker & Bob Hogno.

The colt’s dam Extremely (by Hussonet) is an unraced daughter of Canadian Group winner Going To Extremes, and has left three other winners, including multiple Singapore winner Raise No Doubt (also by Not A Single Doubt). She has a yearling filly by Duporth, a weanling colt by Smart Missile and is back in foal to Not A Single Doubt.

Unbeaten in three starts, Extreme Choice has now earned almost $1.3 million for his owners Anthony Bongiorno, Matthew Davidson, Anthony Davis, Dennis Foley, Louie Gonzy, Karen & Ross Greer, Paul Horton, Gary Jones, George MacDonald, Paul Marsh, Arch Staver, Jim Turner, Dennis Turner, Shane Walter, Matthew Ward, Brad & Lisa Wheeler, Luke Wilkinson & the Newgate Farm Extreme Choice Syndicate.

Extreme Choice is Not A Single Doubt’s third Group 1 winner after Miracles Of Life and Good Project, and Fell Swoop did his very best to become the fourth, in the race after the Blue Diamond, the $500,000 MRC Oakleigh Plate 1400m G1. He went down by the narrowest of margins to a very determined and deserving winner Flamberge.

Between the two Caulfield features, Good Project was third in the $150,000 ATC Liverpool City Cup 1300m G3 and, earlier in the day, 3YO filly Single Gaze split Ghisoni and Stay With Me in the $175,000 ATC Surround S. 1400m G2.

On Friday evening Secret Agenda, another member of Not A Single Doubt’s 2012 crop, was beaten only by the Beneteau filly Almighty Girl in the $150,000 Typhoon Tracy S. 1200m G3.

In total, the Blue Diamond win and four Group placings have added $1,082,000 to Not A Single Doubt’s earnings in just over 20 hours – that’s around $54,000 per hour.

The son of Redoute’s Choice has four colts and three fillies on offer at the Inglis Melbourne Premier Sale which starts on Sunday. They include a powerfully built colt from Time To Move in the Arrowfield draft, Lot 396.

Not A Single Doubt cracks the century

It’s been a slightly below average week for Not A Single Doubt.

Only five wins, including Don’t Doubt Mamma’s Group 3 at Flemington, Clearly Innocent’s Country Championships Qualifier, a double at Goulburn, plus his 100th Australian winner for the season, the Robbie Griffiths-trained Song One at Sale last Tuesday. And another 2YO stakes placing, thanks to Jackson in Melbourne. 

It’s a tongue-in-cheek quibble, of course, because Not A Single Doubt is enjoying a spectacular 2015/16 season. The first 29 weeks have so far produced 167 wins in six countries – almost six wins a week – and he’s a more-or-less permanent fixture on the weekly Top Sires by Wins & Winners tables.

He heads the Australian General Sires’ table on both counts, with 101 winners and 151 wins, healthily in front of Written Tycoon, Fastnet Rock and Lonhro.

Not A Single Doubt has plenty of quality to match the volume and is giving the earnings list a good shake too. His tribe’s weekend work has nudged his prizemoney over $6 million, less than $240,000 behind table leader Street Cry, and almost $800,000 ahead of Fastnet Rock.

Both those rival stallions have major performers running for them over the coming weeks, but so does Not A Single Doubt. His 2YO son Extreme Choice is favourite for next Saturday’s $1.5 million MRC Blue Diamond S. G1, and second favourite for the $3.5 million Golden Slipper G1 on 19 March.

He has already helped Not A Single Doubt into third spot on the 2YO Sires’ list, where he splits his barnmates and fellow Redoute’s Choice sons Snitzel & the much-missed Beneteau. Together they’ve already notched up 15 juvenile winners this season, four of them stakeswinners.

Also in the mix for major Autumn prizes are Not A Single Doubt’s Group 1 winner Good Project, talented 3YO fillies Don’t Doubt Mamma & Secret Agenda, and Oakleigh Plate contender Fell Swoop. 

And there’s no doubt at all that Cressfield’s home-bred Clearly Innocent will be aiming to add the $400,000 Country Championship Final to the Provincial Final won last year by Not A Single Doubt’s son Sure And Fast.

Small wonder that demand for yearlings from Not A Single Doubt’s 2014 crop is so strong. The next opportunities to buy them come up at the Inglis Melbourne Premier Sale where he has four colts & three fillies catalogued, including Arrowfield’s colt from Time To Move. 

Sun Jewellery shines in Hong Kong Classic Cup

Sun Jewellery’s class was all too evident at Sha Tin on Sunday evening when he prevailed in a thrilling finish to the Hong Kong Classic Cup 1800m HK-1, and set himself up for a tilt at history in the Hong Kong Derby.

He is Snitzel’s third stakeswinner this month, after 3YOs Spill The Beans (ATC Eskimo Prince S. G3) and Perignon (ATC Light Fingers S. G2) who are the latest additions to their sire’s lifetime record of 35 stakeswinners.

Sun Jewellery won last month’s Classic Mile HK-1, the first leg of the Hong Kong Four-Year-Old Series, but punters believed that Werther, runner-up in that race, would be better suited by an extra 200 metres, so let Sun Jewellery go out as second favourite. Every other runner, including Arrowfield graduate Blizzard (Starcraft-Stormy Choice), a game third in the Classic Mile, was allowed to start at double-figure odds.

Watch Sun Jewellery win the Hong Kong Classic Cup HK-1.

Sun Jewellery and Werther settled behind the pace in fourth and fifth positions, while Blizzard was forced wide from gate 10 and raced near the back of the field for about 600 metres, until Gerald Mosse sent him forward to slot into third behind Green Dispatch and Eastern Express.

Blizzard launched his challenge at the top of the straight, as Hugh Bowman peeled Werther out behind him, leaving Ryan Moore on Sun Jewellery to consider his options as the field opened up, before electing to switch to the inside. Eastern Express showed plenty of fight too and the four horses lined up for a battle worthy of the race.

However, as Werther wound up for a powerful late burst, it was clear that Sun Jewellery was going well enough to win which he did by a head from Werther, with Blizzard and Eastern Express a nose away in a dead-heat for third. 

The result took Sun Jewellery’s record to eight wins and $2.9 million from 11 starts in Australia and Hong Kong.

Ryan Moore said,  “Sun Jewellery’s a class horse and class usually tells over a distance. He’s probably just better than them, he’s just got a class edge and that allows horses to go further than you’d think they would.

“He’s got an awful lot of courage, and that as well as his attitude are the two things that stand out about him most. I did always feel that I was going to get up. Werther started moving early and I wanted to keep tabs on him – he got away from me a bit but my horse dug in very well.”

Sun Jewellery is only the second horse, after Floral Pegasus in 2007, to complete the Classic Mile/Cup double, and now gets his chance to become the first horse to win all three legs of the Four-Year-Old Series. The 2000 metres of the final leg, the Hong Kong Derby HK-1 on 20 March, takes him into unknown territory, but his trainer John Size has been there before.

Size prepared Choisir’s son Luger to win last year’s Derby, and he believes Sun Jewellery can match that performance.

He says, “Like most good horses he does a lot of things right and his temperament helps him a lot. He’s manageable in a race and he’s determined in a finish, so all those attributes you’d love to have in any horse.”

It’s also worth remembering that, although it’s hard to find stakes-winning form past 1600 metres in Sun Jewellery’s female family, Snitzel has already left Cox Plate winner Shamus Award, and Aliyana Tilde, placed in both the Australian Oaks and the Sydney Cup.

Sun Jewellery is raced by Tung Moon Fai who also bred him from Tan Tat Star (by Umatilla), a city-winning sister to the marvellous Umrum, two-time Group 1 winner and eight times Group 1-placed over eight seasons in the care of Leon Macdonald.

Tan Tat Star has been a fine producer, leaving Sun Jewellery, Group 3 winner Tan Tat De Lago, city winner Tan Tat Tess and two other winners, all her foals to race.

The Tung family has Sun Jewellery’s unraced 3YO three-quarter brother Tan Tat Nova (by Not A Single Doubt) in training with Peter Moody, who also prepared Sun Jewellery for his first four starts in Australia. The mare foaled a filly by Bel Esprit last Spring and is in foal to Manhattan Rain.  

A Redoute's Choice kind of day

It was a Redoute’s Choice kind of day at Flemington on Saturday.

The champion sire opened the card with the fourth consecutive win by his daughter, Debbie Kepitis’ lovely mare All Cerise, and then his sire sons took centre stage.

Watching Sumaya Stables’ 2YO colt Weatherly win the $120,000 VRC Talindert S. LR revived memories of both his charismatic sire Beneteau and the juvenile Redoute’s Choice. Especially when he romped home without jockey Craig Williams needing to engage more than a couple of what he believes are the colt’s several gears.

That assessment is backed up by Weatherly’s sectionals. Despite a tardy start and ending up on the slower grandstand side with only two other horses, he produced a 33.47 last 600 metres to score by 1.5 lengths, easing down.

First start filly Conscious was an impressive runner-up with stakeswinner Jackson (by Not A Single Doubt) best of the railside runners, almost five lengths further back.

Watch Weatherly win the VRC Talindert S. LR.

Weatherly, named after the victorious 1962 America’s Cup defender, is trained by Paul Messara for his breeder, Chilean businessman Oussama Aboughazale, whose Australian thoroughbred interests are managed by his good friend, Arrowfield Chairman John Messara.

John Messara explains, “I met Oussama because he was an original shareholder in Hussonet, and he subsequently  invested in several fillies here, and then bred and raced Beneteau with us.” 

Beneteau’s bright star shone all too briefly, in a brilliant Blue Diamond Prelude G3 victory and a Blue Diamond G1 third, followed by early retirement and a much too early death in January 2013, leaving only 135 foals to build his stud record.

What a record it’s turning out to be. Thirty-one winners, including eleven stakes performers, five of them stakeswinners – enough to indicate that Beneteau would have stepped up alongside Snitzel and Not A Single Doubt to complete a formidable triumvirate of sensational Redoute’s Choice sons at Arrowfield.

Weatherly, whose dam Luna Bella (a sister to Group 2 winner Hips Don’t Lie, by Stravinsky) died last Spring after foaling a Redoute’s Choice filly, has given his owner and trainer a very desirable dilemma. Blue Diamond next week, or Golden Slipper next month?

Paul Messara says, “The horse’s welfare is number one and we’ll see how the horse is. It was only his second start in a race and we’ll take it from there.”

Around two hours after Weatherly’s win, Not A Single Doubt’s 3YO daughter Don’t Doubt Mamma defeated Egypt and Perfect Reflection in The Vanity 1400m G3, her second black type success and fourth win from 10 starts.

Watch Don’t Doubt Mamma win the VRC The Vanity G3.

Trainer Tony McEvoy said, “She surprised me a bit today, to come out and beat those other top line fillies and first-up today, fresh as she is, means there is a lot to look forward to.

“The Australian Guineas is a tempting offer for sure, but she’ll tell us where she is best suited. We’ll see how she comes through it – she’s a pretty uncomplicated filly.

“There’s a mares race (the Frances Tressady Stakes) back here and the Australian Guineas or we can go three weeks into the Coolmore Classic in Sydney. There are a few options to work out but it’s a nice problem to have.”

Don’t Doubt Mamma (ex Coconut Mamma, by Fantastic Light from the celebrated Denise’s Joy family) was purchased privately from Tyreel Stud by Blue Sky Bloodstock for Peter Katelanis and partners, most of whom also raced her year-older stakes-winning brother Risen From Doubt.

Arrowfield is breeding from Miss St Tropez (Magnus-Coconut Mamma), who has an All American weanling filly and is in foal to Animal Kingdom.

Five fillies and four colts by Redoute’s Choice will be offered by five vendors at the Inglis Melbourne Premier Sale which begins on Sunday 28 February.

Promise To Reign on target for Classic test

Brendan & Jo Lindsay’s Manhattan Rain filly Promise To Reign passed her first stakes test with distinction when she split Mime and the favourite Capella in Saturday $100,000 Waikato RC Sir Tristram Fillies Classic 2000m G2.

Watch Promise To Reign’s 2nd in the Sir Tristram Fillies Classic G2.

Only the win would have made trainer Moira Murdoch happier with Promise To Reign’s performance, and jockey Leith Innes believes the track condition was all that beat her. 

Moira says, “We’re all very proud of her, Brendan was beside himself with delight and Leith felt she would have won if the track had been firm.

“She’s a slightly built filly but she’s a thriver, and tough as nails. She’ll be a nice mare for Melbourne in the Spring.”

Promise To Reign has a little more work to do before her winter spell, in the Sunline Vase G3 at Ellerslie on 5 March and then the $300,000 New Zealand Oaks G1 at Trentham on 19 March. That’s the race she has been aimed at all season and her trainer is confident she will cope with the 2400-metre Classic.

“She’s a great settler, just drops the bit and goes to sleep, and she has a tremendous turn of foot.”

Murdoch, famous in Australia as the trainer of 1994 Cox Plate winner Solvit, prepares Promise To Reign for Brendan & Jo Lindsay whose agent John Foote bought the filly for $270,000 from the Arrowfield draft at the 2014 Inglis Easter Sale. It’s been a good week for graduates of that consignment, with Rekindled Effort (Redoute’s Choice-Rekindled Applause) winning on debut at Pakenham for Paul Messara, and Diego Kosta (Charge Forward-Joy Ride) successful in Hong Kong for John Size.

Promise To Reign was bred by Cloros Bloodstock and Arrowfield from the El Prado mare Certain Promise a sister to French Group 1 winner Spanish Moon and Royal Ascot Group 2 winner Spanish Sun. The family’s many fine middle-distance performers include Flintshire, a Group 1 winner in France, Hong Kong & the United States.

Certain Promise has a 2YO colt by Smart Missile with Star Thoroughbreds, a yearling filly by Animal Kingdom and a weanling filly by Smart Missile. The mare is in foal to Olympic Glory.

On this side of the Tasman, Manhattan Rain has the talented juvenile filly Scarlet Rain, progressive 4YO Right Or Wrong (winner of his last two starts in Brisbane) and 3YO debut winner Always all boosting his team for the Autumn.  His leading earner so far this season, the smart sprinter Wild Rain, is spelling after her excellent second to Husson Eagle in the Magic Millions Sprint.

Fourth on the current Third Season Sires’ list, Manhattan Rain has two colts and a filly in the upcoming Inglis Melbourne Premier Sale, and five colts in the Inglis Easter Sale, including Arrowfield’s colt from Lankan Rupee’s sister Charming Estelle.

Snitzel filly nabs Light Fingers Stakes

Snitzel’s blazing hot summer continued at Randwick on Saturday when his daughter Perignon became his 35th stakeswinner, and third stakeswinner since 24 January, in the $175,000 ATC Light Fingers S. 1200m G2.

It was a well-deserved success for the 3YO filly who has chased Speak Fondly home three times in Group company, as a juvenile and in last Spring’s Furious S. G2 and Flight S. G1. This time, she showed the benefit of further development since her Spring campaign by making up several lengths in the straight to catch Kangarilla Joy and Tempt Me Not, and score a thrilling win.

Jockey Tim Clark said of Perignon, “A classy filly. First up against a couple of race fit horses was always going to be a tough ask, but I was really happy when I found Hughie’s back [Hugh Bowman, on Kangarilla Joy] down the side. I just wanted to hold onto her for as long as I could and fortunately we timed it right and got there in the end.”

Perignon takes her trainer Gerald Ryan’s record of success with Snitzel’s progeny to nine stakeswinners, all of them except Dances On Stars & Fireworks bred & sold by Arrowfield: Snitzerland (VRC Lightning S. G1), Group 2 winners Flying Snitzel, Hot Snitzel (who later won the BTC Cup for Peter & Paul Snowden), Perignon & Time For War; Group 3 winners Dances On Stars, Fireworks and Spill The Beans; & Listed winner Ygritte.

Perignon was bred by the Arrowfield-Jungle Pocket partnership, also repsonsible for Group 1 winners Sweet Idea, Hot Snitzel, Reaan & Weekend Hussler. She was a $350,000 Ryan purchase for owners Camilla Flower & Sylvana Surace from Arrowfield’s 2014 Magic Millions Gold Coast draft. 

Perignon’s dam is the Japanese-bred mare Last Blaze, a daughter of Narita Brian and Melbourne Group 2 winner Rubidium. Last Blaze’s four earlier foals, two by Snitzel and two Not A Single Doubt, have all won including Perignon’s sister, the Group-placed city winner Hollyweird, also trained by Gerald Ryan.

Now owned by Oakland Park Stud, Last Blaze has a colt among the 24 Snitzel yearlings to be offered at the Inglis Melbourne Premier Sale later ths month.

Snitzel’s latest run of black type success began with Sun Jewellery’s Hong Kong Classic Mile HK-1 victory on 24 January and continued with last Saturday’s ATC Eskimo Prince S. G3 win by Spill The Beans. With fresh talent such as China Dream (third in Saturday’s Blue Diamond Prelude G3) emerging each week,  Snitzel’s Autumn attack is only beginning.

Happy vendors at Inglis Classic Sale

The Arrowfield roster played its part at an exceptional Inglis Classic Sale, contributing a fifth of the 69 yearlings that sold for $100,000 or more at Newmarket in Sydney earlier this week.

Seven Arrowfield stallions were represented by 51 lots sold at an average price of $75,333 – 31% above the sale’s record-breaking average of $57,426.

That key measure was complemented by the median, up 47% to $44,000. Vendors were clearly happy to sell into such a strong market and sold all but 10% of the offering. That helped to boost the aggregate to $26.7 million – up from $13 million only two years ago.

Snitzel, fresh from a trio of million-dollar Magic Millions colts and a sale-topping average at Karaka, again delivered plenty of good news for breeders. His top price of $220,000 was achieved for the colt from Crevice (by Gulch), sold by Torryburn Stud, and Arrowfield received $170,000 for the Snitzel half-brother to Saturday’s 2YO winner Hussterical, from Hussterics (by Hussonet). They headed Snitzel’s seven lots sold for an average of $120,714.

Smart Missile is viewed very positively by trainers and syndicators who bought eight of his yearlings at an average of $110,000 – more than five times his $20,000 fee. Top price of $230,000 was paid by Paul Perry for Glenlogan Park’s filly from Chateau d’Yquem (by Pins), whose family has produced a string of outstanding fillies in New Zealand: Gee I Jane, Miss Jessie Jay, Katie Lee & Banchee.

One indication of the Sale’s strength is that $230,000 would have been Smart Missile’s third-highest price at the Magic Millions Gold Coast Sale.

Other buyers who added a Smart Missile to their stables were Gerald Ryan, Mark Minervini, Matt Laurie, Blueblood Thoroughbreds and Spicer Thoroughbreds with Lindsay Park Racing.

The McAlpine family’s Eureka Stud enjoyed great success with their Snitzel colts at Magic Millions, and Smart Missile stepped up for them at Classic with a colt & a filly fetching a total of $220,000. The successful buyers were Yu Long Investments and Smart Missile’s own trainer, Anthony Cummings.

Not A Single Doubt’s tremendous season is fuelling an insatiable demand for the yearlings offered from his 77-foal 2014 crop. All five of his Classic Sale lots sold, averaging $88,000 with a top price of $160,000 paid by Proven Thoroughbreds  & Pride Racing for Middlebrook Valley Lodge’s typical-of-her-sire filly from Angel’s Breath (by Tale Of The Cat).

The market’s “thumbs-up” opinion of All American ensured the sale of all 13 of his catalogued yearlings, at an average figure of $53,115. His top prices were the $110,000 paid by Bryan Dais Racing for Rosemont Stud’s attractive colt out of Savalook (by Savabeel), and the $105,000 bid by Henderson Racing & Breeding for Arrowfield’s filly out of the Redoute’s Choice mare Lodore Falls.

It was much the same story for Manhattan Rain, whose six fillies & two colts all found new homes, at prices up to the $87,500 Riddell Pty Ltd paid for Arrowfield’s handsome colt from Modave (by Montjeu).

All three yearlings offered from the first crop of Animal Kingdom also sold, among them Segenhoe’s colt from Amatista (by Scenic), knocked down to Platinum Park Enterprises for $75,000.

Proven Group 1 sire Charge Forward has consistent appeal for trainers, so it was no surprise to see Matthew Smith (Warwick Farm), Chris Heywood (Wagga Wagga) & Graham Richardson (New Zealand) sign for his yearlings from the families of Group 1 winners Loving Claim, Exosphere & Rena’s Lady.

The Arrowfield stallions are well-represented at the next major yearling auction of the season, the Inglis Melbourne Premier Sale, which begins on 28 February. Arrowfield’s 21-strong draft features six lots by Animal Kingdom and four colts & a filly by Redoute’s Choice.

Snitzel & Arrowfield Making the Most of Success

Success can never be taken for granted in racing.

But with a stallion like Snitzel, it must be hard to resist the temptation and allow expectations get away from you.

For leading breeder John Messara such temptations have repeatedly been placed before him, especially over the past few years as Snitzel builds a reputation and a record to rival the best.

“When you’ve been in this business for three decades, as Arrowfield has, you never reach the point of taking any success – especially stallion success – for granted,” Messara says.

Messara has been behind some of the greatest Australian, and international, breeding successes of the modern era, introducing such stallions as Danehill to this country and managing the career of the champion stallion Redoute’s Choice.

Like most, Messara and Arrowfield Stud have also been reminded of the fickle nature of the business, as they were recently by the loss of Beneteau just as he emerged as a potentially superior stallion.

But he still permits himself a glimpse toward the future of Snitzel and to his sons, like Saturday’s stakeswinner Spill The Beans, who is also bound to stand alongside his sire and grandsire at Arrowfield.

“Possibly the most exciting thing about Snitzel, and Not A Single Doubt, is that they both made slower starts to their stud careers than Redoute’s Choice, so I don’t think they’ve hit top gear yet,” Messara says.

“The best is still to come.”

At the same time, Messara can’t help acknowledging the realities.

“We’re delighted with every new stakeswinner and every good price Snitzel achieves, and grateful for all the support that breeders, owners & trainers give him and his progeny,” he says.

The victory of Spill The Beans in Saturday’s Group 3 Eskimo Prince Stakes at Randwick added to that delight.

At every major sale in Australia and New Zealand in the past year, his sire Snitzel has been either the leading stallion or has provided the sale-topper.

At the Magic Millions Gold Coast sale in January his colt form Mirror Mirror topped the sale at $1.6 million. He also led the averages and was the highest grossing stallion.

At last year’s William Inglis Sydney Easter Sale his brother to the Group 1-winning sprinter Sizzling led the sale at $2.2 million and a half-brother to the champion mare Alinghi brought $1.8 million, the second-highest price.

Snitzel also produced the top lot at the 2015 Melbourne Premier sale and last month he topped the averages at the Karaka Premier Sale in New Zealand.

And they can run.

Last year Snitzel had three Group 1 winners – Hot Snitzel, Wandjina and Sweet Idea.

In 2014 he had Shamus Award who won the Group 1 Australian Guineas, having won the Group 1 Cox Plate the previous year, and Snitzerland, and before that Sizzling also won a Group 1 sprint in 2013.

Already in 2016 Snitzel has produced the stakes winner Sun Jewellery (HK G1) as well as Spill The Beans.

As well as anticipating Spill The Beans’ potential as a stallion, Messara also looks to the colt as an example of the two sides of racing’s glorious uncertainty.

Offered as a yearling at the 2014 Inglis Classic Sale, Spill The Beans was less than an immediate success.

Even though Snitzel was already making a name for himself, Messara had placed a modest reserve of only $60,000 on the colt, but the bidding struggled to only $45,000 at which point the auctioneer muttered the dreaded “more needed” and he was led away.

As his trainer Gerald Ryan reported after Saturday’s win, Spill The Beans had been considered by a Hong Kong buyer at the sale, only for a vet to reject him after viewing x-rays of his joints.

“He failed the x-rays for Hong Kong at the yearling sale and again when he got up and racing,” Ryan said.

Ryan said the only flaw he found in the colt was a scar from a knock he’d suffered in the paddock – and wins at his first two starts suggest his horseman’s instinct might be superior to veterinary science.

“He’s never gone shin sore or had any issues. I’ve always thought he could gallop,” he said.

Messara, in whose Arrowfield colours the colt races, can now afford to reflect philosophically on the failed sale.

“Inherent athletic ability, great rearing, skillful training and the passage of time can, and often do out-weigh any flaws that prevent a young horse selling,” he said.

“Even with our best efforts to place yearlings in the right markets and set realistic reserves, and all the skill and effort buyers put into their work, a few horses will slip through the net.”

For a yearling who was passed-in to go on and become a successful racehorse and stallion is far from unprecedented.

Australia’s champion stallion Fastnet Rock was led away unsold when he was offered as a yearling in 2003 and the bidding stalled at $290,000.

Spill The Beans’ win in the Eskimo Prince was his first since last June, and while his three performances in between were moderate, Ryan said he had expected the improvement the colt showed.

Ryan now has Group 1 races in mind for Spill The Beans who holds entries for both the Newmarket and the TJ Smith Stakes.

“Whether he gets to races like that remains to be seen,” Ryan said.

For Arrowfield the future may be in colts like Spill The Beans and Scissor Kick, another son of Redoute’s Choice, but for now attention is more closely focused on the Inglis Melbourne Premier Sale beginning later this month, and Easter.

“We have a very strong draft for the 2016 Inglis Easter Sale – the 25 yearlings we’re taking there represent the best work of the entire Arrowfield team and we’re proud to present them,” Messara said.

“We’ll have a few outstanding Redoute’s Choice colts at Easter in what we hope will be an admired draft.

“Melbourne Premier has been a happy hunting ground for our buyer clients with Hot Snitzel, Snitzerland & Singapore champion Stepitup all among our recent graduates.

“This year we have a standout filly by our new sire Animal Kingdom from the Queensland Oaks winner Vitesse Dane; the All American-Salutations colt and the Redoute’s Choice-Anadan colt are also very good types.”

For Messara, a look to the future can’t be made without reference to Redoute’s Choice who claimed the first of his four titles as Australia’s champion sire in 2005-06.

“The best accolade I can give Redoute’s Choice now is that 15 years after he joined the Arrowfield roster, I am still astonished by him,” he says.

“And I am still excited by the prospect of what his own progeny will do during this coming autumn, at The Championships and most of all in Europe over the next few years, as his two French-conceived crops start to race.

“Wherever he appears in a pedigree, he’s pure class.”

Published with the kind permission of Aushorse: 

Magic Millions Perth 3YO Trophy to Let It Slip

Not A Single Doubt’s daughter Let It Slip added Sunday’s Pinjarra RC Magic Millions Perth 3YO Trophy 1200m (R) LR to her very consistent record for trainer Daniel Pearce, a large group of owners and breeder Chris Gales of Gervase Park.

It was the fifth stakes win in two days for Arrowfield’s sons of supersire Redoute’s Choice, after the Saturday successes of Extreme Choice (Not A Single Doubt), Spill The Beans (Snitzel) and Beneteau (Twist Tops & Puritan) at Caulfield and Randwick.

Let It Slip was sent out at a generous $9 at her first start since her WATC Placid Ark S. LR win in November and subsequent Group 3 fourth. She over-powered The Cobbla & Rhi’s Rocket in the final stages to collect the winner’s cheque of almost $90,000 and push her career earnings beyond $230,000.

It was the filly’s third win from eight starts and she will now head to the WA Breeders’ Classic LR over 1400 metres at Bunbury in March. However, jockey Jarrad Noske indicated she could also win over a mile in strong company.

Sold by Gervase Park for $130,000 at the 2014 Magic Millions Perth Sale, Let It Slip is one of only two foals left by city winner Oopsy Doopsy (by General Nediym) before her death in August 2014. It’s a family established in Australia by the mares Kampeon & Melanesta, imported from England more than 30 years ago.

Let It Slip’s fourth dam Kampeon (by Bold Lad) is also third dam of Group 1 winner Hollow Bullet and juvenile stakeswinners Red Hot Mama and Mama’s Choice, while Melanesta (by Estaminet) left Group 1-winning sprinters Alishan and Grandiose, as well as the grand-dam of champion New Zealand 2YO The Heckler.

Go several generations further back in the distaff line and up pops the name of turf legend Sceptre, winner of the 1000 & 2000 Guineas, Oaks & St Leger in 1902.

2016 is shaping up as another milestone year for Not A Single Doubt, whose yearling daughter from Miss Sharapova sold for $650,000 at last month’s Magic Millions Gold Coast Sale. He has 7 stakeswinners on the board already this season including Good Project (WATC Railway S. G1) and is less than $230,000 behind current General Sires’ table leader Street Cry.

Street Cry has big talent lined up for the Autumn, including Winx and Arrowfield’s own filly Stay With Me, but Blue Diamond favourite Extreme Choice heads a prolific, quality team of performers that will keep Not A Single Doubt in the race for the premiership.