Maurice joins the Arrowfield roster

Arrowfield Stud is proud to announce that international champion and six-time Group 1 winner Maurice will shuttle to Arrowfield from the 2017 southern hemisphere breeding season onwards.

Owned by Mrs Kazumi Yoshida, Maurice was named Japan’s 2015 Horse of the Year, Champion Sprinter & Champion Miler. He was also honoured with a Special JRA Award for his 2016 victories in the Tokyo Tenno Sho G1, Hong Kong Champions Mile G1 & his sensational swansong, the Longines Hong Kong Cup G1 at Sha Tin in December.

Mrs Yoshida’s husband, renowned international owner and breeder Katsumi Yoshida, has given Maurice the best possible endorsement by sending him two-time Horse of the Year and 7-time Group 1 winner Gentildonna (by Deep Impact). He says, “She is the best mare I own, she will be covered by Maurice.”

Champion jockey Joao Moreira, who rode Maurice to win the 2016 Hong Kong Champions Mile G1, says, “He is a beautiful horse. He’s got a great body, he has strength and he moves like a real champion horse. He is undoubtedly right up there with the best I have ridden.”

Two-time Longines World Champion jockey Ryan Moore, who piloted Maurice to victory twice in Hong Kong, as well as in the 2015 Kyoto Mile Championship G1 and 2016 Tokyo Tenno Sho G1, spoke about what made him exceptional during a retirement celebration held at Nakayama on 15 January.

“He was just an outstanding looking horse. He has a fantastic mind, he always wanted to win. He put everything into his races. He was really powerful, travelled wherever you wanted him to and he had a fantastic turn of foot.”

The jockeys and trainers of his defeated rivals also enthused about Maurice, who was unbeaten in three Hong Kong Group 1 appearances.

Leading Australian and Hong Kong Jockey Brett Prebble described Maurice simply, “A machine.”

Champion Hong Kong trainer John Moore told visiting Japanese media, “He’s a great specimen of a horse and a tremendous racehorse… I wouldn’t hesitate to send a mare to him. I hope you’ve got yourselves another Deep Impact.”

South China Morning Post racing journalist Michael Cox wrote, “The horse that looks indestructible and races accordingly.”

Arrowfield’s Chairman John Messara says, “Nobody could fail to be impressed by Maurice’s extraordinary performances at the highest level. We are privileged to have the opportunity to stand the Yoshidas’ charismatic superstar whose physique, 1600-metre dominance and Danehill-free status make him a wonderful addition to our roster.”

Maurice retires with a record of 11 wins, six at Group 1 level, including four at 1600 metres, and prizemoney exceeding A$12 million. On the 2016 Longines World’s Best Racehorse Rankings he has been awarded a figure of 127, placing him fifth overall, and third on turf in the world.

Maurice (Screen Hero-Mejiro Frances) will stand at Arrowfield this year at a fee of $A33,000 inc GST alongside dual Group 1 winner Real Impact, bred by the Yoshida family. Maurice is fully booked for his first northern hemisphere season in 2017 at Shadai Stallion Station.

For more information about Maurice please visit: www.arrowfield.com.au/horses/maurice-jpn.html

First Group 1 winner for Manhattan Rain

Several boxes were ticked on Saturday when Whisky Baron scored a spectacular victory in South Africa’s richest race, the ~$500,000 Kenwilworth Sun Met 2000m G1.

The 4YO gelding a is a new Group 1 winner for Arrowfield’s Inglis Easter Sale honour roll; he’s the first Group 1winner for the Aga Khan Studs/Arrowfield joint venture; and the first Group 1 winner for his sire Manhattan Rain.

Whisky Baron showed promise as a 3YO when he won and was twice second in Group 3 company, but he has progressed more rapidly as this season as a gelding, winning all four of his starts before the Met, including the Kenilworth Peninsula H. G3 on 7 January.

The big finish he unwound to over-power Horse of the Year Legal Eagle and Group 1 winner Captain America and win the Sun Met by 1.5 lengths in 2:02.71 left no doubt that Whisky Baron, trained by Brett Crawford for brothers Craig & Ross Kieswetter, is South African racing’s newest star.

Watch Whisky Baron win the Sun Met G1.

A $50,000 purchase by Craig Roscoe & Joey Ramsden from Arrowfield’s 2014 Inglis Easter draft, Whisky Baron is the fourth foal of the unraced Sinndar mare Tazkara. Like this season’s debut 2YO stakeswinner Azazel, and a pair of $500,000 yearlings sold at Magic Millions three weeks ago, he is a result of the Aga Khan/Arrowfield joint venture.

He joins the excellent record of the Aga Khan foundation mare Tonnera, herself winner of the 1966 Prix St Alary G1 over 2000 metres, and ancestress of  European Group 1 2YO winners Arcano, Carlotamix and Damson.

Tazkara has a 3YO filly named Pretty Snitzel (by Snitzel) in training with Kelly Doughty on the Gold Coast and, after returning to France in 2014, foaled a second filly by Snitzel. Now a southern hemisphere 2YO, that filly will be prepared by leading French trainer Jean-Claude Rouget. Tazkara also has a yearling colt by Excelebration and is foaling to the speedy young Shadwell stallion Muhaarar (by Oasis Dream).

Whisky Baron is Manhattan Rain’s third stakeswinner this season, after Group 2-winning sprinter Wild Rain and brilliant juvenile She Will Reign, an early favourite for the Golden Slipper. His Group 2-winning daughter Scarlet Rain, who returned from a long break to win stylishly at Rosehill on Saturday, must be a fine chance of adding more black type to her record in coming weeks.

The Group 1-winning son of Encosta de Lago has a small number of yearlings catalogued for upcoming sales, including NZ Select, Inglis Classic, Premier & Easter and Magic Millions Adelaide. Manhattan Rain’s top-priced lot at Magic Millions Gold Coast was the $360,000 filly out of Double Ranga, a full sister to Scarlet Rain. Offered by Arrowfield, she was purchased by Wu Jae’s Rifa Mustang Pty Ltd.

Five yearlings by Redoute’s Choice & Animal Kingdom out of Aga Khan broodmares from the families of Vadawina, Azamour, Manighar and Mandistana will be offered by Arrowfield at the Inglis Easter Sale in April.

2YO Group double for Redoute's Choice & Snitzel

Redoute’s Choice and Snitzel delivered a one-two punch at Rosehill on Saturday when the Arrowfield-bred pair Pariah and Teaspoon took out both the Group 3 features for juveniles.

In the $150,000 Canonbury S. 1100m G3 Hualalai and Showtime took up the running ahead of the hot favourite Menari (by Snitzel), while Kerrin McEvoy settled debutant Pariah back off the pace.

Sent wide around the turn, Pariah got down to his work with real commitment to win by a length from Menari and Malahat in 1:04.63. Although Menari had to be counted unlucky, the Redoute’s Choice colt powered to the line in a manner that suggests there’s plenty more to come.

Watch Pariah win the ATC Canonbury S. G3.

Pariah’s co-trainer Peter Snowden said, “This horse has so much upside to him – it was only his first start today and he’s only going to improve from that.  He’s always been well above his years in everything he’s done.”

The $1.5 million Blue Diamond S. G1 at Caulfield on 25 February is the target proposed for Pariah, a $700,000 buy at last year’s Inglis Easter Sale.

He extends James Harron’s outstanding record with purchases from Arrowfield. Group 1 winners Sweet Idea & Wandjina, Group winner Odyssey Moon and Listed winner Detective have all been bought out of Arrowfield consignments by the Sydney-based agent. He signed for five Arrowfield yearlings at the 2017 Magic Millions Sale, including the sale-topping $1.3 million Redoute’s Choice-Ballet Blue colt.  

Pariah is raced by James Harron Bloodstock Colts with a group of regular JHB clients, among them Fergus Doyle, Belinda Bateman, Rob & Donna Love and John & Fran Ingham.

Harron said, “He’s a great-natured colt who has really matured into a beautiful horse and absolutely, things look good for him moving forward.’’

“When we saw him at Easter last year he had a lot of quality about him, was very masculine and he had a lovely shape, a really nice medium-sized horse, not too big and definitely not too small. Add to that his terrific pedigree and we were confident we were on a winner and, well, it’s off to a nice start.”

A three-quarter brother to dual Group1 winner Melito, Pariah is the first foal of the city-winning mare Secluded, and was bred by Arrowfield in partnership with John Leaver, David Paradice and Paul Favretto. Arrowfield will offer his full brother at this year’s Inglis Easter Sale and Secluded is again in foal to Redoute’s Choice.

The lifetime statistics for Redoute’s Choice now read 138 stakeswinners and 34 2YO stakeswinners and Pariah is his seventh stakeswinner this season. He is also the second stakeswinner to emerge from Arrowfield’s Graduate Class of  2016, after Inglis Melbourne Premier graduate Azazel, winner of October’s Inglis Banner S. (R) LR.

Forty minutes after the Canonbury, Arrowfield’s own Yellow and Black silks were seen in the winner’s circle after the Stud’s home-bred filly Teaspoon put up a quality performance to take out the $150,000 ATC Widden S.1100m G3 at her second start.

Teaspoon jumped smartly from gate 10 and Hugh Bowman elected to take advantage of her early speed by pressing forward to take up the running. The filly settled sweetly in front and went for home with plenty of determination, but briefly lost her lead as Mystic Empire drove at her in the straight.

However, when her champion jockey asked Teaspoon for another effort, she willingly gave it, and came away again to score by a half-length in 1:05.08 from Mystic Empire, Sweet Deal and the favourite Boorooj.

Watch Teaspoon win the ATC Widden S. G3
.

Teaspoon’s trainer Michael Freedman said, “She’s given them weight today. Hugh has had to use her up a little bit from that wide gate. She was there to be run down and she kept fighting.”

The $3.5 million Golden Slipper on 18 March is now in the filly’s sights, with races like the Sweet Embrace and the Reisling as possible lead-ups.

Teaspoon is the 48th stakeswinner and 20th 2YO stakeswinner for Snitzel who topped the Magic Millions sires’ table with 42 lots sold for $13.9 million. He is also back on top of the Australian 2YO Sires’ list, though he remains in close battle with I Am Invincible.

Teaspoon is the fourth stakeswinner out of Arrowfield’s wonderful and now-retired matron Patronella, also dam of Group 2 winner Stella Artois, dual Listed winner Smytzer’s Trish, Group 3 winner Aliyana Tilde (by Snitzel) and Group 2-placed filly Bacarella (by Beneteau). Aliyana Tilde is already part of Arrowfield’s broodmare band, while Bacarella, recovering from injury, and Teaspoon run for the Arrowfield stable.

Champion 2YO Shalaa to stand at Arrowfield in 2017

Al Shaqab’s Champion 2YO Shalaa (IRE) will shuttle to Arrowfield Stud in Australia from 2017.

Shalaa (Invincible Spirit-Ghurra by War Chant) made his mark on the 2015 European season with five consecutive 1200-metre victories, culminating in Group 1 success in Europe’s premier 2YO sprinting tests, powering clear of his rivals in the Deauville Prix Morny G1 and making all in the Newmarket Middle Park S. G1.

Those performances ultimately cemented Shalaa’s status as Champion 2YO Colt in Great Britain and France.

Jockey Frankie Dettori said after Shalaa’s Middle Park win, “He’s got tremendous speed and he is the fastest two-year-old I’ve ridden. I haven’t met a horse fast enough to lead him.”

His champion trainer John Gosden echoed Dettori’s assessment. “He’s very, very fast – the fastest two-year-old I’ve trained.

“He has so much speed and has that sprinter’s build, so he reminds us all of Oasis Dream…He’s of that mould.”

Timeform was similarly impressed, rating Shalaa at 123+ in July 2015, and declaring him the best two-year-old in the world at that time.

Shalaa is now about to start serving his first mares in France at owner Al Shaqab’s Haras de Bouquetot, among them World Champion and dual Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe winner Treve.

Shalaa is a son of the remarkable success story Invincible Spirit, who now commands a €120,000 fee at The Irish National Stud.  His 98 stakeswinners include European Horse of the Year Kingman, Champion European Sprinter Moonlight Cloud and successful young Australian sire I Am Invincible, who currently leads the Australian General Sires’ premiership, following Houtzen’s Magic Millions 2YO Classic victory.

Benoit Jeffroy, Manager of the Al Shaqab breeding operation, comments, “Shalaa is a standout individual, well balanced, correct and he is a great mover. As a son of Invincible Spirit he should undoubtedly prove as popular with Australian breeders as he has been in Europe.”

Khalifa Al Attiya, Al Shaqab Racing ‘s General Manager, says, “We are delighted that Shalaa will be shuttling to Arrowfield Stud in Australia. After his tremendous racing career we have all the hopes he will become a top sire, and we’ve entrusted him with some of our own top quality mares including dual Arc winner Treve.”

Arrowfield’s Chairman John Messara says, “We’re excited to stand Europe’s dominant sprinting two-year-old Shalaa at Arrowfield in association with Al Shaqab, alongside their Champion sprinter-miler Olympic Glory.

“Shalaa displayed the high quality, early-maturing speed that Australian breeders demand and offers a fresh take on the Danzig sire-line that is clearly working here.”

Messara adds, “I have inspected him personally and he is a great physical type, ideally suited to the Australian market. Arrowfield will support him strongly with a significant number of our quality mares.”

Shalaa will stand his first Australian season in 2017 at a fee of $33,000 inc. GST.

Meet Ziva & her buddy Lenny, aka Vadashan

In his old life, the good-looking dark brown gelding who now lives happily in a paddock near Arrowfield’s broodmare division, was a rising star with Australian Derby aspirations.

He was trained for Arrowfield and partners by Paul Messara, now the Stud’s Manager, who said after Vadashan’s second win at Warwick Farm in February 2013, “He’s beautifully bred, has always shown me ability and has no trouble getting a trip.”

He defeated a couple of good horses that day, That’s A Good Idea & Spurtonic, who went on to become stakeswinners, so the future looked very bright for the son of Redoute’s Choice and the Aga Khan mare Vadsalina. (The Aga Khan Studs give horses from the same family names that begin with the same letter – Vadashan is a 6th-generation member of the “V” family.)

However, Vadashan didn’t get a chance to fulfil his potential because, after a couple of unplaced runs, he suffered an injury that ended his racing career – and opened the door to a new life.

Ziva Mullins, Arrowfield’s Assistant Hospital Barn Manager, was willing to re-train Vadashan, now known as Lenny, for all the disciplines of eventing. She has put in long hours with great patience and skill to complete his rehabilitation and re-train him for his new career.

 

And Vadashan loves every minute of it. As he walks down the laneway surrounded by poplar trees, it’s easy to see his lovely balance and athleticism – attributes as valuable in eventing as in racing. Ziva has worked wonders with Lenny’s re-education, teaching him dressage techniques and easing him out of the racing groove. He’s inherited the kind and resilient temperament of his champion sire and is always eager to please.

Ziva has big plans for the now seven-year-old gelding, describing him as “a real pleasure to work with, he gives me 100% effort every time. It’s great to have a horse that has been bred, trained and now re-trained at Arrowfield.”

 

We know the exercise session has come to a close when he stands still and turns his nose to touch his rider’s boot. She responds with a short cuddle before the pair walk back to the stable for a wash down. Vadashan is one of many Australian racehorses that are given a chance at a second career in the care of devoted horse-people – sometimes the same people who knew and cared for them as foals, yearlings and racehorses.

 

Success for Redoute's Choice daughters of Oaks winners

A couple of Sunday results highlighted the strong breeder support Redoute’s Choice continues to attract, and  a pair of likely 3YO fillies to follow through to Autumn Classic engagements.

First-up at Te Rapa in New Zealand was Fashionably, the first foal of 2011 Queensland Oaks G1 winner Scarlett Lady (by Savabeel), who went on to Group 1 weight-for-age success in the 2012 ARC New Zealand S.G1.

Fashionably, a $240,000 Inglis Easter buy for Te Akau Racing, started favourite in the1600-metre 3YO maiden and won well after being restrained early by Opie Bosson, then sweeping quickly around the field at the 800-metre mark to score by 1.5 lengths.

Watch Fashionably win at Te Rapa.

It was the filly’s third start for Garry Chittick & Waikato Stud, which also co-bred her dam, now owned by Australian breeders Max Whitby and Neil Werrett. Scarlett Lady has a 2YO filly Oh Miss Scarlett (by All Too Hard), a yearling colt by Snitzel, a colt foal by Fastnet Rock and is in foal again to Snitzel.

Fashionably is trained Stephen Autridge & Jamie Richards and holds a nomination for the New Zealand Oaks G1 on 18 March.

Just over two hours later at Wyong, the Waterhouse & Bott stable lined up Strawberry Hill Stud’s home-bred filly Long Time Ago, the first foal of 2010 Australian Oaks G1 winner Once Were Wild (by Johannesburg).

Like Fashionably, Long Time Ago was sent out favourite, but contested a 1200-metre Fillies & Mares maiden. She jumped well from gate eight, was forced to sit four wide, wobbled slightly round the bend and impressed by picking up strongly in the straight to prevail quite comfortably.

Watch Long Time Ago win at Wyong.

She may well get her chance to emulate her mother in this year’s $1 million Australian Oaks G1 on 8 April and join the 7 Oaks winners already on the record of her champion sire: Absolutely & Royal Descent (Australian Oaks), Anamato, Abbey Marie & Gallica (Australasian Oaks) and Miss Finland & Samantha Miss (VRC Oaks).

New stakeswinner for Beneteau

Redoute’s Choice’s son Beneteau notched up his 10th stakeswinner when Sparta easily won Saturday’s Macau Sprint Trophy 1200m MAC-3.

The 4YO gelding, winner of four of his previous eight starts in Macau, romped home by more than three lengths from the New Zealand-bred River Bobo in 1:08 flat.

Watch Sparta win the Macau Sprint Trophy Mac-3.

Sparta was bred by Tony Pistikakis from the Commands mare Helena Girl and initially raced by him in Australia, in partnership with Lam King Poy & K.M. Ng, who now race him in Macau.

Sparta, described after foaling at Arrowfield in October 2012 as a “lovely, big, strong maiden foal”, was trained for two Spring 3YO starts in Australia by Hawkes Racing, which subsequently signed for his younger half-brothers by Animal Kingdom at the 2016 and 2017 Magic Millions Gold Coast Sales.

Helena Girl has a filly foal by Smart Missile and is in foal to Dundeel.

With ten stakeswinners, including Group 1 winner Lasqueti Spirit, and 11 other stakes performers from 131 named foals, Beneteau was clearly headed for major sire success before his death in January 2013. He has no juveniles representing him this season, yet still holds third, behind Hinchinbrook & Star Witness, on the Australian Third Season Sires’ table, with 25 winners and $1.8 million prizemoney.

Snitzel can exceed 2YO winners' record

Snitzel equalled Without Fear’s 40-year-old season record of thirty juvenile winners in 2015/16 and now he’s on target to claim it for himself.

Remarkably, he could set a new mark well before the end of this season, because he’s already posted 16 winners – eleven more than he’d compiled by this time last year. 

So it’s perfectly apt that the latest Snitzel 2YO winner is Think Big Stud’s filly Exceeds, successful at her second start at Randwick on Saturday when she beat the favourite Eden Roc, with Kristensen and Pandemonium dead-heating for third.

Her performance franked the quality of the 2YO race at Canterbury on 31 December won by the exciting Not A Single Doubt filly From Within, from Snitzel colts Invader & Chauffeur (fifth & second respectively in the Magic Millions Classic), with Exceeds fourth.  

Watch Exceeds win at Randwick

Trainer James Cummings said of Exceeds’ win, “She had the race experience from one of Sydney’s best Saturday two-year-old races over the past few months. She was able to produce late like a really promising filly in the making.”

“It might pave the way for a nice little fillies race in the coming months. There is a race I’ve got my eye on but she’s got up over 1000m there so I’ll have to keep thinking about it. She has got a bit of style about her and pretty of improvement still to come.”

Exceeds was bred by Musk Creek Farm from Exceedingly Happy (Exceed and Excel) and purchased for $250,000 by Duncan Ramage’s DGR  Thoroughbred Services at the 2016 Magic Millions Gold Coast Sale.

Exceeds is one of 12 city victors among Snitzel’s 16 2YO winners since 1 August, a group headed by Listed Inglis Banner winner Azazel, Group-placed Goodfella, and stake-placed Chauffeur & Snitzkraft.

Yet to win and good chances to do so in coming weeks are stakes-placed fillies Dinnigan & Spoils and the colt Bowerman, Friday’s impressive Rosehill trial winner Showtime, Invader and city-placed Epic Rant & Milanese Girl.   Nor is the Australian 2YO Sires’ earnings premiership beyond Snitzel’s reach. Houtzen’s Magic Millions defeat of Chauffeur gave I Am Invincible a lead, but he currently holds it by less than $130,000.

Snitzel has 10 lots catalogued for next month’s Inglis Classic Sale, including Arrowfield’s filly out of Miss Victoria and 13 lots for Inglis Melbourne Premier.

Healthy Magic Millions results for Animal Kingdom

Arrowfield offered four Magic Millions yearlings from the second crop of American champion Animal Kingdom and they all found new homes at a healthy average price of $155,000.

His top price of $230,000 was the bid of Hawkes Racing for the Helena Girl colt, who will become a stablemate of his unraced year-older full brother Royal Phoenix.

The other buyers were syndicator Champion Thoroughbreds ($150,000 filly ex Ready Magic), trainer Liam Birchley ($140,000 colt ex Alexandrova) and David Raphael & Amy Johnston Bloodstock ($100,000 filly ex Menage A Charge).

It’s very early days yet for the present group of Australian first season sires, who must compete against a formidable line-up of exceptional proven sires of 2YOs, but three of Animal Kingdom’s four runners, Seductive Miss (trained by John Salanitri), Desert Flower (Paul Messara) and Momentum To Win (David Payne) have placed on debut.

The Dubai World Cup and Kentucky Derby winner will be represented by three colts and two fillies in Arrowfield’s Inglis Classic Sale consignment, as well as colts from Bowness & Sledmere Studs and Turangga Farm. Adam Sangster’s Swettenham Stud will present an Animal Kingdom colt at the Inglis Melbourne Premier Sale.

Smart Missile keeps firing in the ring & on the track

Australia’s leading second season sire Smart Missile continued to please vendors with his third crop of yearlings at the Magic Millions Gold Coast Sale averaging $107,419 for 31 lots. That’s better than five times his fee which has remained at $20,000 + GST for five years.

His top price of $300,000 was achieved by a pair of fillies, the daughter of Kitalpha offered by Daandine Stud and purchased by Newgate Thoroughbred Services, and Newgate Farm’s half-sister to Listed winner Russian Revolution, bought by China Horse Club. That figure of $300,000 is the second-highest price paid for a Smart Missile yearling, exceeded only by his first-crop debut 2YO winner Missile Coda, purchased by Woppitt Bloodstock.

Smart Missile’s first offering of yearlings in 2017 attracted strong interest from a wide range of local and international buyers. Three colts were bought at $260,000, $150,000 and $110,000 for the Hong Kong market; John Warren paid $250,000 on behalf of Highclere Australia for Yarraman Park’s Miss Vandal filly; and New Zealand buyers signed for a colt and a filly.

Several Australian stables and syndicators added a Smart Missile to their purchases, among them Clarry Conners, Hawkes Racing, Lindsay Park, Ciaron Maher, Gai Waterhouse, Matt Laurie, Matt Cumani, Dalziel Racing and Prime Thoroughbreds.

Meanwhile, 3YOs Ahndras (in Brisbane), Arleigh (in Adelaide), Stephenstihls (in New Zealand) and Friday’s Canberra winner Like A Shot have taken Smart Missile’s current season list of winners to thirty-four.

Arleigh, an Arrowfield home-bred grand-daughter of champion filly Alinghi, was an impressive maiden winner at Morphettville on Wednesday. Trainer Phillip Stokes expected her to be competitive first-up from a spell and so it proved as she bounced zestily out of the gates, settled second under a hold and sprinted clear to score untested by almost four lengths in 57.13 for the 1000 metres.

Watch Arleigh win at Morphettville.

Across the Tasman, the Mike Breslin-trained Stephenstihls has put himself in the frame for the $1 million New Zealand Derby G1 on 4 March with a stakes placing and two consecutive wins in progressive company, most recently over 1400 metres at Trentham on 7 January.

Watch Stephenstihls win at Trentham.

Smart Missile has 30 lots on offer at next month’s Inglis Classic Sale, including two colts and two fillies in the Arrowfield draft, and 11 yearlings catalogued for the Inglis Melbourne Premier Sale.