The Autumn Sun shines brightly

The Autumn Sun is more than holding his own on a high quality Australian stallion roster. (PHOTO: Joan Faras)

In the wake of last weekend’s racing, which produced new Group winner Vibrant Sun & new stakes performer The Autumn Belle for The Autumn Sun, it’s timely to review his early-stage stud career.

Champion 3YO Colt The Autumn Sun retired to Arrowfield Stud with expectations of greatness. After all, he was effectively replacing his own sire, the legendary Redoute’s Choice, who died just 3 days after The Autumn Sun’s fifth Group 1 victory and final race, the 2019 Rosehill Guineas.  

The inevitable father-son comparison was never going to make it easy for The Autumn Sun, yet he still managed to match Redoute’s Choice with two first-crop juvenile stakeswinners, debut Group 3 winner Autumn Ballet and Listed winner Coco Sun, plus Group 1-placed Tulsi.

However, we have always believed that the classic influence of The Autumn Sun’s damsire Galileo and his deep Aga Khan family would prevail, with maturity and distance likely to reveal the full scope of his aptitude as a sire.
And that’s exactly what’s happening with The Autumn Sun’s first-crop three-year-olds.

His record has built steadily this season with a further two Group winners, Autumn Angel (Kewney Stakes at 1600m & Ethereal Stakes at 2000m) & Vibrant Sun in last Saturday’s 1600-metre Alexandra Stakes G3, plus Tutta La Vita (Group 1-placed in the Surround Stakes at 1400m & Flight Stakes at 1600m, and 4th in the Spring Champion S. G1), The Autumn Belle (a winner at 1741m and stakes-placed over 1600m) and Kosgei (stakes-placed at 2200m and 4th in the Victoria Derby G1.) Note that most of these performances have been in Sydney & Melbourne.

To understand the merit of this it’s necessary to compare “apples with apples”. That is, compare the 3YO crop of The Autumn Sun vs the same 2020 crop of other stallions, most of whom have 4, 5 & six-year-olds representing them as well. Such a comparison of The Autumn Sun’s 2020 crop highlights his growing worth as a sire:

  • More winners than Exceed And Excel, Written Tycoon and Justify.
  • More stakes performers than Pierro, So You Think & Trapeze Artist.
  • More prizemoney than Deep Field, Toronado and Maurice.
  • A better Stakes Performers/Runners strike rate than Dundeel, Russian Revolution and Hellbent.

In fact, he is top 10 in every category when you compare, but with an arrow up as his later types continue to progress.

Already 25% of The Autumn Sun’s first crop runners have competed at stakes level and he has two of the 10 runners in this Saturday’s Vinery Stud S. G1 – an indication of the talent his progeny exhibit and the potential they clearly have.

Another perspective, illuminating for breeders & yearling buyers alike, is to compare The Autumn Sun’s record with notable sires at the same stage of their career – that is, after their first 70 starters (Southern Hemisphere crops only):

Arrowfield certainly remembers Snitzel at this point, with half the number of The Autumn Sun’s stakeswinners, and Not A Single Doubt, who didn’t post his first stakeswinner until his first crop was about to turn four!

Such analysis is timely ahead of the 2024 Inglis Easter Sale where 22 yearlings by The Autumn Sun will be offered, 18 of them consigned by Arrowfield.

The Autumn Sun is shining brightly, and still rising…

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