Blue Diamond triumph for Arrowfield graduate Tagaloa

Jockey Michael Walker celebrates with Tagaloa's jubilant owners after a thrilling Blue Diamond G1 victory by the Arrowfield Magic Millions graduate. (PHOTO: Darren Tindale)

Arrowfield celebrated its 19th Group 1-winning yearling sale graduate since 2013, and the sixth to win at elite level as a juvenile when Tagaloa held out the favourite Hanseatic to win the 50th running of the $1.5 million Blue Diamond S. 1200m G1 at Caulfield. 

The colt is also the second Blue Diamond winner bred by Arrowfield’s partnership with Japan’s Northern Farm, after Reaan in 2008.

Tagaloa takes the Stud ‘s tally of Group 1-winning graduates in the past 12 months to six, following The Autumn Sun, Kenedna, Castelvecchio, Super Seth & Alabama Express.

An eye-catching debut third in November’s Maribyrnong Plate G3 and a Moonee Valley winner three weeks later, Tagaloa faded from Blue Diamond discussions and started at 25/1, despite his sound Prelude G3 fourth on 8 February. 

However, Tagaloa’s trainers Natalie Young & Trent Busuttin, who bought him for $300,000 from Arrowfield at the 2019 Magic Millions Sale, remained confident about his prospects and sure that he would improve second-up in the Blue Diamond. 

It was an emotional win for the Kiwi couple, who celebrated their first Group 1 success since transferring their business to Victoria in 2016. (They had previously prepared Australian Group 1 winners Sangster & Tavago in New Zealand.)

It was the 7th Australian Group 1 success for Kiwi-born jockey Michael Walker who said, “It’s just a great result for me and a great result for a very classy colt.”

Japanese-conceived, Australian-born Tagaloa as a Magic Millions yearling. (PHOTO: Arrowfield)

Tagaloa is the first foal of Vasilissa (by Heart’s Cry, sire of Cox Plate winner Lys Gracieux), a winner over 1800 metres in Japan. She is out of English Group winner and Guineas G1-placed Penkenna Princess, also the dam of Listed winner Tricolore Bleu and Group performers Danon Gelato & World Impact.

Vasilissa has a weanling filly by Not A Single Doubt and visited The Autumn Sun last Spring. 

Tagaloa has the measure of race favourite Hanseatic at the business end of the $1.5 million Blue Diamond S. G1. (PHOTO: Bronwen Healy)

Tagaloa is the first Australian stakeswinner and the fourth lifetime Group 1 winner (after Almond Eye, Saturnalia & Stelvio) by Lord Kanaloa who, with only three crops racing, finished third behind Deep Impact & Heart’s Cry on Japan’s 2019 General Sires’ Premiership. 

Arrowfield’s 2020 Inglis Easter draft includes two Lord Kanaloa fillies: Lot 1, from German 1000 Guineas winner Kali, and Lot 468, from Glare Channel, closely related to Japanese Champions Stay Gold and Shonan Pandora. 

View Arrowfield’s Inglis Easter 2020 consignment here. 

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