Smart Missile 2YO wins Inglis Nursery

Smart Missile’s fourth 2YO stakeswinner Irish Bet made a more-than-usual impact with his convincing debut win in Saturday’s $500,000 ATC Inglis Nursery 1000m (R) LR. 

Watch Irish Bet win the ATC Inglis Nursery (R) LR.

Most obviously, the $291,000 winner’s prizemoney is an exceptional, and early return on the $55,000 that agent Mick Flanagan bid for him on behalf of the China Horse Club at the 2017 Inglis Easter Sale.

The Club’s International Racing & Breeding Manager Michael Wallace said of Irish Bet, “He showed us a lot of ability from day one but two-year-olds off one trial, you never know until you see them in action.

“He was a lovely horse, was always going to be a good two-year-old type, he just had everything we look for in a two-year-old type.”

The win was more than usually significant as the first stakes success for John O’Shea on his own account since leaving Godolphin earlier this year.

He described Irish Bet, “He is a classic two-year-old. He is a compact horse, a running horse with a great attitude.

“He will be straight to the paddock for a short break and then we will get him ready for a race like the Skyline Stakes to get him to the Slipper.”

Race bonuses of $50,000 are uncommon and welcome rewards for breeders Barry Broomhead and Jim Knox who sent the unraced O’Reilly mare Dublin Me Bet to Smart Missile, and for the colt’s well-regarded vendor Middlebrook Valley Lodge.

Mr Broomhead explained his stallion selection, “I just liked Smart Missile, he was well priced, he had great sectionals in some of his racing, he was very fast and I just thought he would work for us.” Dublin Me Bet also has a yearling filly by Smart Missile.

Irish Bet and the filly Anthemoessa, second at Caulfield on Saturday, have propelled Smart Missile into third spot, behind Choisir and Not A Single Doubt, on the Australian 2YO Sires’ premiership. He has also moved past Sepoy to head the Third Season Sires’ table, with $2.2 million and 46 winners.

It’s a strong performance featuring a large cast of talent beyond Irish Bet. In fact, it was a four-win weekend for Smart Missile, thanks to Smartedge (Kembla Grange), Missile Boom (Cranbourne) & Protest (Sunshine Coast). 

They join a long list of Smart Missile performers since 1 August, including Group-placed 3YO fillies I’ll Have A Bit and Smart Coupe, and progressive city winners Sparky Lad, Special Missile, The Avenger and Missile Coda in Sydney, and Club Tropicana, Masculino, Memory Bank and Ultra Smart in Melbourne. 

Backed by sustained breeder support, large foal crops and leading owners & stables, the Champion First Season Sire of 2015/16 is on track to make 2017/18 his best season yet.

Twenty-two yearlings by Smart Missile will be offered at the 2018 Magic Millions Gold Coast Sale, followed by 36 lots catalogued for February’s Inglis Classic Sale. Arrowfield’s consignments for these sales include 7 colts and 4 fillies by Smart Missile. 

 

First American winner for Animal Kingdom

The name of Animal Kingdom’s first US starter and winner, 2YO filly Sunny Skies, may well turn out to be an accurate forecast of the young sire’s prospects as he begins to build momentum with his first crop runners in both hemispheres. 

Smart showings at a series of local breezes ensured strong betting support for Sunny Skies when she lined up over 4.5 furlongs (900 metres) at Keeneland on Thursday and she duly delivered, taking an early lead and opening up in the home straight to score an unpressured nine-length victory.

Watch Sunny Skies win on debut at Keeneland. (Race replay courtesy of TDN)

A daughter of the unraced mare Skyscape (by Marquetry), Sunny Skies is a half-sister to Grade 2 winner Sky Cape and is trained by Kenny McPeek for owner-breeder Nancy Polk’s Normandy Farm. 

It’s been a good week for Animal Kingdom who posted his third Australian winner, after Earth Angel & Platinum, when the Paul Messara-trained Arrowfield 2YO gelding Lord Cecil (ex Lady Zabelia by Zabeel) won his debut at Muswellbrook on 21 April.

He also added a couple of new placegetters when Table Mountain (ex Aliyana Tilde by Snitzel) and Barbary (ex Amatista by Scenic) filled the placings in a juvenile handicap at Wyong on 27 April.

Second winner for Animal Kingdom

John O’Shea has consistently expressed his enthusiasm for Godolphin’s first group of Animal Kingdom juveniles and today he sent out the Dubai World Cup champion’s second winner.

Platinum scored a determined win at his third start over 1200 metres at Ballarat, after sitting four wide most of the way and then out-finishing the rapidly closing Give, with Super Snob almost 1.5 lengths back, third.

Watch Platinum win at Ballarat.

A homebred for Darley, Platinum is out of the city-winning mare Swishes, a half-sister to Group winner Le Zagaletta. Swishes is the dam of six winners from as many foals to race, including stakes-placed gelding Demonstrate.

Animal Kingdom has now compiled two smart winners, Platinum and TDN Rising Star Earth Angel (ex Miss Finland by Redoute’s Choice) on 8 March, and four placegetters (Momentum To Win, Animalia, Desert Flower & Seductive Miss) from eight runners. Earth Angel’s next assignment is likely to be in Melbourne stakes company next month.

Animal Kingdom has a quality consignment of 11 yearlings on offer at the 2017 Inglis Easter Sale: five colts and four fillies in Arrowfield’s draft, and a pair of fillies presented by Tartan Fields.

Seaside makes 114 stakeswinners for Redoute's Choice

The remarkable 2009 crop of Redoute’s Choice produced its 19th stakeswinner when Sheikh Mohammed’s mare Seaside won Saturday’s $200,000 Scone RC Dark Jewel Classic G3.

She is also the 14th stakeswinner that Redoute’s Choice has added to his lifetime record since he passed the century milestone in February 2013.

Seaside initially settled towards the rear of the Dark Jewel field, but Kerrin McEvoy worked her steadily forward during the first half of the race. She made ground around the turn and sprinted home strongly to score by a half-length from stablemate Aerobatics in class record time of 1:22.68.

The daughter of Group 3 winner Living Spirit (by Hennessy) has now won four of her 14 starts and more than $300,000.

World champion sprinter Lankan Rupee and Classic winners Royal Descent & Wylie Hall head the 19 stakeswinners from the 107 foals in Redoute’s Choice’s 2009 crop. That’s a strike rate of 17.7% – better even than his celebrated second crop (17 SW from 121 foals – 14%).

Seaside and Inglis 3YO Guineas placegetters Liberty’s Choice & Ryker boosted Redoute’s Choice’s season prizemoney to $9,520,553, almost $625,000 ahead of his son and barnmate Snitzel.

Redoute’s Choice is currently completing his second season at HH The Aga Khan’s Haras de Bonneval in France and will stand the 2014 Australian season at a fee of $110,000 inc. GST.

Diamond shines for Not A Single Doubt

Gypsy Diamond’s part-owner and co-breeder Ron Finemore was smiling broadly after the 3YO filly ran out an impressive winner of the $200,000 ATC Carbine Club S. 1600m G3 on Day 1 of The Championships at Royal Randwick.

Topweight of 57kg and a Heavy9 track offered a serious test for the daughter of Not A Single Doubt and the race didn’t begin well for her when she missed the jump and ended up slightly worse than midfield during the running.

Jockey James McDonald had to wait until the field straightened and opened up before starting to drive Gypsy Diamond forward, but the filly responded quickly and generously to score by two lengths from Casino Dancer, with Rock Sturdy another half-length away, third.

Bred and raced by Finemore in partnership with John Leaver, Gypsy Diamond (ex Gypsy Tucker by Zabeel) won the Moonee Valley Fillies’ Classic G2 and was fourth in the VRC Oaks G1 last spring. She returned to finish second to Sweet Idea in the ATC Light Fingers S. G2 and fourth in Thump’s Surround S. G2 before an unplaced run in last month’s Coolmore Classic G1. She has now won more than $400,000 from three wins & three placings in a 13-start career.

Trainer John O’Shea said, “She’s a talented filly and I thought she would have acquitted herself very well in the Doncaster, so it was great to get her on the board today and get a win this preparation and she can line up here next week in the mares’  race [the $1 million Queen of the Turf S. G1] and see if she can go up another grade.”

It has been a productive week for Not A Single Doubt whose nine Session 1 lots at the Inglis Easter Sale averaged $190,000. They included Gypsy Diamond’s full brother, purchased for $200,000 by Snowden Racing from the Arrowfield draft.

Not A Single Doubt’s son Mystic Power won last Sunday’s Selangor Gold Cup LR and today his Blue Diamond-winning daughter Miracles of Life was second in the SAJC Redelva S. LR. They are among Not A Single Doubt’s 14 stakes performers this season.