Snitzel & National Colour honoured with TBA Awards

Arrowfield’s Champion Sire Snitzel and Klawervlei Stud’s wonderful broodmare National Colour were honoured with three 2016/17 awards presented by Thoroughbred Breeders Australia at Coolmore on Sunday morning.

Snitzel secured the coveted Champion Australian Sire award after establishing a new Australian record for progeny earnings of $16.2 million, and equalling Danehill’s record of 26 Australian stakeswinners for the season. They included Group 1 winners Invader, Redzel & Russian Revolution.

Snitzel was also crowned Champion Sire of 2YOs with eight individual juvenile stakeswinners and total earnings of almost $5 million. The son of Redoute’s Choice also set a new Australian record of 35 2YO winners, including three in New Zealand.

Leading broadcaster and breeder Alan Jones AO accepted both awards on behalf of Arrowfield.

He said, “It’s been a wonderful year for Arrowfield and I’d like to thank the whole team there who have done a wonderful job, as they do in all studs. We couldn’t survive without the work of the staff and they do a fantastic job.

“It’s been a remarkable year for Snitzel, he equalled Danehill’s record for the most stakeswinners in a season which is quite extraordinary, so we are very honoured, very privileged and very thankful.”

Following the TBA National Awards, Thoroughbred Breeders New South Wales (TBNSW) made two presentations.

The title of NSW Champion Broodmare Of The Year was awarded to the South African-bred National Colour, dam of Sheikh Hamdan’s colts Mustaaqeem and Rafeef, both by Redoute’s Choice, both bred by the Arrowfield & Klawervlei Stud partnership and both prepared by Mike de Kock to win at Group 1 level on Champions Day at Turffontein on 6 May.

Foaled in South Africa in 2002, National Colour (National Assembly-Rainbow Cake by Mr Eats) was herself a three-time Group 1 winner and Joint South African Horse of the Year in 2005/06. She is the dam of three winners, including Rafeef and Mustaaqeem, from four named foals, has a yearling colt by Redoute’s Choice and is due to foal again to the three-time Champion Sire this Spring. Her just-turned 2YO filly by Snitzel was bought for $675,000 by Paul Messara at this year’s Inglis Easter Sale.

The full list of 2016/17 National and NSW Award Winners is:
TBA Award Winners
Champion Australian Sire: SNITZEL
Champion Australian Sire of 2YOs: SNITZEL
Champion Australian First Season: PIERRO
Australian Broodmare of the Year: VEGAS SHOWGIRL – dam of Winx, unbeaten in eight starts inc. six Group 1 races last season
Breeder of the Australian-bred Exported Racehorse of the Year: MR ENRIQUE COJUANGCO – breeder of Hong Kong Champion Rapper Dragon.
TBNSW Award Winners
NSW Champion Broodmare: NATIONAL COLOUR
President’s Award for Outstanding Achievement: MR ROB MANWARING – breeder of Group 1 winner Capital Gain & dual Listed winner Grande Rosso.

Arrowfield graduates honoured in South Africa

Four  Group 1-winning Arrowfield graduates, all purchased from the Inglis Easter Sale, were the only Australian-bred finalists for South Africa’s 2016/17 Equus Awards, and two of them won their respective categories.

Sheikh Hamdan’s brilliant colt Mustaaqeem was named Champion 2YO Colt, and Whisky Baron won the Champion Middle Distance title at the Awards ceremony in Johannesburg on Tuesday evening.

Like his sire Redoute’s Choice, Mustaaqeem made only two juvenile appearances, but achieved maximum impact with a runaway debut win, followed by a four-length victory in the Turffontein South African Nursery G1 on 6 May. 

That performance very quickly turned into a rare piece of history when Mustaaqeem’s older full brother Rafeef – now standing at Highlands Stud in South Africa – won the Computaform Sprint G1 on the same Champions Day card. Rafeef was a finalist for the Champion Sprinter award won by Carry On Alice.

Mustaaqeem and Rafeef are sons of South African Horse of the Year National Colour, both of them bred by Arrowfield and Klawervlei Stud, both offered at successive Inglis Easter Sales and both purchased for Shadwell by master buyer Angus Gold. It took $800,000 to buy Rafeef in 2014, and more than twice that amount, $1.75 million, to secure Mustaaqeem two years later. 

National Colour has a 2YO Snitzel filly bought for $675,000 by Paul Messara at Inglis Easter and now part of Arrowfield’s racing team, and a yearling colt by Redoute’s Choice. The mare is in foal to Snitzel.

Whisky Baron (Manhattan Rain-Tazkara by Sinndar), a product of the Aga Khan Studs’ partnership with Arrowfield, was also bought from the 2014 Easter Sale, for just $50,000 by Craig Roscoe & Joey Ramsden. Trained by Brett Crawford for former international cricketer Craig Kieswetter and his brother Ross, Whisky Baron progressed dramatically from three to four, winning all five of his starts last season, which ended with a stunning success in the R5 million Kenilworth Sun Metropolitan H. G1 over 2000 metres. 

Tazkara is now in France, but has two daughters in Australia including Whisky Baron’s full sister Downtown Manhattan whose first foal is a yearling colt by Olympic Glory. 

The fourth Arrowfield graduate among the Equus Award finalists was 3YO colt Heavenly Blue (Snitzel-Simply Carina by El Prado), bred by the Stud in partnership with Cloros Bloodstock and bought for $200,000 by Jehan Malherbe’s Form Bloodstock.

Winner of both his 2YO starts, Heavenly Blue raced exclusively in Group company at three, winning the Turffontein South African Classic G1, and finishing third in the South African Derby G1.

He also hails from the yard of champion trainer Mike de Kock who received a Special Achievement Award after reaching the milestone of 3,000 career wins in March.

Simply Carina has a 3YO daughter, Play That Song (by Smart Missile), in the Mike Moroney stable, a 2YO filly by Snitzel and a yearling colt by Smart Missile. 

Seven Group 1 winners head Arrowfield's 2016/17 season

The Arrowfield stallion roster has deservedly claimed most attention in 2016/17 season summaries, but the farm’s own graduate and sale results were equally spectacular.

Invader (ATC Inglis Sires’ Produce S. G1) and Secret Agenda (SAJC Robert Sangster S. G1) were only two of the Stud’s seven Group 1 winning-graduates in 2016/17. The other five were successful in South Africa (full brothers Rafeef & Mustaaqeem, Heavenly Blue and Whisky Baron) and Hong Kong (Contentment).

They head a group of 20 stakeswinners of 33 Group & Listed Races last season that were bred and/or sold by Arrowfield. All but two (Group-winning juvenile fillies Shoals & Teaspoon) were offered at Australian yearling sales: seven at Inglis Easter, four at Magic Millions Gold Coast, three at Inglis Melbourne Premier, two at Inglis Classic, one at each of the Magic Millions National and Adelaide Sales. 

Their prices ranged from the $1.75 million paid by Shadwell Stud for Mustaaqeem to the $23,000 trainer Shea Eden gave for dual Group 3 winner Ocean Embers at Magic Millions Adelaide, where she was offered under the banner of Cornerstone Stud. The median price of the 17 horses sold at auction was $210,000, and the average was just over $460,000.

Only Western Australian sprinter Rock Magic, winner of three Group 3 events and a Listed Race last term, failed to sell as a yearling. He was prepared by Paul Messara to win four races before his sale as a 4YO to clients of Perth trainer Chris Gangemi for whom he has now won more than $900,000.

Arrowfield’s Class of 2016 contributed eight stakeswinners: Invader & Mustaaqeem, Group 2 winners Gunnison & Shoals, Group 3 winners Pariah & Teaspoon and Listed winners Ardrossan (in New Zealand) & Azazel. All remain in training, although Gunnison, sold for $1.4 million at the Inglis Chairman’s Sale, is now in Hong Kong, and Ardrossan has been transferred to Mick Price in Melbourne. 

The season’s honour roll was completed by 3YOs Heavenly Blue, Kenedna and Detective, six 4YOs headed by Secret Agenda, Rafeef & Whisky Baron, 5YO mare Wild Rain, 6YO Contentment and 7YO Rock Magic.

Peter & Paul Snowden (trainers of Invader, Gunnison, Pariah & Detective) and James Harron (buyer of Detective, Gunnison & Pariah) enjoyed most success with Arrowfield graduates last season. The famous team of Shadwell Stud and champion South African trainer Mike de Kock earn a special mention for their Group 1 double with Mustaaqeem and Rafeef at Turffontein on 6 May.

Against this background of top-level performance, outstanding sale-ring results were achieved for the Stud and several long-standing clients. By the end of the yearling sales season Arrowfield had sold 138 lots for a total of $34.7 million, among them eight colts and a filly sold for $1 million or more. 

They included the top-priced Australian yearling of 2017, the $2.5 million Redoute’s Choice-Secluded colt bought at Inglis Easter by Tim Stakemire for Sheikh Khalifa bin Mohammed al Maktoum. 

Arrowfield sold the joint top-priced Redoute’s Choice-Ballet Blue colt at Magic Millions, secured for $1.3 million by James Harron, who also signed for three other colts from Arrowfield’s Magic Millions draft. 

Other buyers who bought multiple yearlings from Arrowfield were: Andrew Williams Bloodstock (6 lots), Darby Racing (5), Australian Bloodstock (4) and Shadwell Stud, Boomer Bloodstock & Cameron Cooke (3 each).

Redoute's Choice keeps building the legend

No-one can accuse Redoute’s Choice of slacking off while his sons Snitzel and Not A Single Doubt went about their spectacular, history-making business in 2016/17.

Redoute’s Choice kept relentlessly busy, compiling stakes wins in every month of the season, from Great Esteem’s Heatherlie S. LR at Caulfield on 28 August, to the Prix Chloe G3 in France on 9 July, won by his 149th lifetime stakeswinner, 3YO filly Ibiza.

His progeny have won at least 20 stakes races in all but two seasons of his career, and in 2016/17 eighteen of them won 22 stakes races worldwide – 13 in Australia, 4 in South Africa, two in France, two in New Zealand and one in Hong Kong.  Sixteen of these victories were at Group level.

They included a new piece of history for his own record, a rare Group 1 double on the same 6 May card at Turffontein by Sheikh Hamdan’s full brothers 4YO Rafeef (now retired to stud) and scintillating 2YO Mustaaqeem. This sibling double took their Champion Sire’s tally of Group 1 winners to 32 and his superlative record in South Africa to five Group 1 winners from only 29 runners.

Group 3 successes by Ibiza and Gold Luck opened the stakes account of Redoute’s Choice’s first European-conceived crop. Back home, Pariah (in Australia) & Ardrossan (in New Zealand) joined Mustaaqeem to give him a lifetime total of 36 juvenile stakeswinners. All three colts remain in training this season.

Near the end of the season smart 5YO sprinter Thewizardoz became the second Hong Kong stakeswinner for Redoute’s Choice when he won the Premier Cup G3 over 1400 metres.

And in Western Australia, the sterling 7YO sprinter Rock Magic won many fans with a Listed win, three Group wins and third & fourth placings in Group 1 company. Also in the West, two daughters of Redoute’s Choice, Royal Star and Very Tempting, claimed the Natasha S. LR and WA Oaks G3 for owner-breeders Bob & Sandra Peters.

Racetrack results, his sons’ stud success and a quality offering fuelled a powerful demand for yearlings by Redoute’s Choice. The $1.3 million Ballet Blue colt shared top billing at Magic Millions, and three months later the full brother to Pariah commanded the year’s top price of $2.5 million at Inglis Easter.

Along with the $1.8 million half-sister to English and the $1 million half-brother to Dundeel, they took Redoute’s Choice’s career total of million-dollar yearlings to 74, a group that has already produced three Group 1 winners: Samantha Miss, Master Of Design & Mustaaqeem.

Redoute’s Choice finished in 12th spot on the Australian General Sires’ Premiership, leaving it to Snitzel (1st), Not A Single Doubt (5th) and the deceased Stratum (10th) to give him a dominant presence in the top ten.

Most significantly, Snitzel’s first Premiership, following those of Redoute’s Choice (2006, 2010 & 2014) and Danehill’s nine titles, completed a three-generation sequence of Champion Sires that is without precedent in Australian thoroughbred history.

Daughters of Redoute’s Choice secured his fifth-place finish on the Broodmare Sires’ list with $12.1 million prizemoney and 10 stakeswinners. They included his fifth and sixth Group 1 winners as a damsire, Inference (ATC Randwick Guineas G1) and The Mission (ATC Champagne S. G1). 

Snitzel’s first stallion Premiership and his new fee of $176,000 inc. GST mark a generational shift on the Arrowfield roster, initiated more than a decade ago by John Messara’s prescient decision to stand two sons from the first two crops of Redoute’s Choice.

However, as the Millennials are discovering in the human world, generational shifts are gradual rather than abrupt and, like the Baby Boomers, Redoute’s Choice remains a potent force in Australian breeding & racing.

Fully booked at a fee of $110,000 inc. GST and with around 330 Australian 2YOs, yearlings and 2017 foals to come, Danehill’s greatest sire son has many stories yet to add to his remarkable legend. 

A Group 1 weekend for Arrowfield graduates

Arrowfield has had many Group 1 weekends in its 32-year history, but few better than 6-7 May 2017 when four sale graduates by three different stallions won elite races in three countries.

Heading the quartet were Mustaaqeem & Rafeef who achieved a rare sibling Group 1 double in the SA Nursery and Computaform Sprint on Turffontein’s Champions Day. The sons of champion sire Redoute’s Choice & South African Horse of the Year National Colour were both purchased from the Inglis Easter Sale by Shadwell Stud’s master buyer Angus Gold and are trained in South Africa by Mike de Kock.

Rafeef and Mustaqeem, bred by Arrowfield in partnership with leading South African farm Klawervlei Stud, are the latest of Shadwell’s four Group 1-winning Inglis Easter graduates by Redoute’s Choice. Champion South African filly Majmu, also trained by de Kock, was a $300,000 buy from Arrowfield in 2013, and the David Hayes-trained Blue Diamond winner Nadeem was bought for $700,000 from Edinglassie’s 2005 draft.

With a new lifetime tally of 32 individual Group 1 winners, Redoute’s Choice has edged past the great US sire Giant’s Causeway (31 G1 winners) on the global Group 1 sires’ list. It’s a figure now bested only by Galileo (64 G1 winners) among active international sires.
 
Arrowfield’s third success on Saturday came in Adelaide when Blueblood Thoroughbreds’ $120,000 Magic Millions purchase Secret Agenda  overcame a wide draw to win the Robert Sangster S. G1. She is Not A Single Doubt’s sixth Group 1 winner and his third this season after Extreme Choice (MVRC A.J. Moir S. G1) and Scales of Justice (WATC Railway S. G1).

Secret Agenda was bred by the long-standing partnership of Arrowfield, John Leaver & Alan Jones, also successful at Group 1 level with Miss Finland and her daughter Stay With Me. Arrowfield has a record that includes all five Group 1 2YO races and six Australian Guineas winners.

Not A Single Doubt is on track to match or better his career-high 2015/16 performance, with 12 winners of 18 Group & Listed Races – just three black type wins short of his total last season.|

Three new Group 1 winners were enough to make the weekend memorable, but Contentment made it spectacular with a dramatic victory in the The Champions Mile G1 at Sha Tin on Sunday evening.

Contentment was described in post-race interviews as “quirky” by his jockey Brett Prebble, but it’s not a word that matches his quality record of 10 wins, six placings and more than $6 million from 29 starts, 21 of them in Hong Kong Group company.

His breeders Paul Favretto, Tony Hodgson, Paul Rowe and David & Peter Sinn are certainly proud of the 6YO son of Hussonet and their mare Jemison, who has yearling & weanling fillies by Animal Kingdom & Dundeel, and is again in foal to Dundeel.

A $65,000 purchase by John Foote from Arrowfield at the 2012, Contentment is trained by John Size for Benson Lo Tak Wing and, with a new figure of 126, is a top five performer in Hong Kong this season.

Rounding out the weekend’s graduate results were a couple of meritorious Group 1 placings, by Kenedna (Not A Single Doubt-Miss Dodwell), runner-up in the Australasian Oaks G1, and  Heavenly Blue (Snitzel-Simply Carina), third in the South African Derby G1, and a New Zealand Listed stakes win by 2YO Ardrossan (Redoute’s Choice-Miss Argyle).

Historic Group 1 double for Redoute's Choice

Before Saturday, Redoute’s Choice already had a same-track, same-day Group 1 double on his extraordinary record. That was achieved more than a decade ago, when Nadeem & Snitzel won the Blue Diamond and the Oakleigh Plate at Caulfield on 25 February 2006.

But a Group 1 double at the same meeting by two full brothers, bought from the same vendor & breeders by the same owner and prepared by the same trainer? Surely that’s beyond even this bar-raising, mould-breaking, three-time Champion sire?

Here’s the news: it isn’t. On Champions Day at Turffontein in South Africa Sheikh Hamdan’s colts Mustaaqeem and Rafeef, both by Redoute’s Choice out of South African Horse of the Year National Colour and both Arrowfield Inglis Easter graduates, won Group 1 races within three hours of each other.

With only a (very impressive) debut win behind him, 2YO Mustaaqeem started favourite in the R1 million South African Nursery 1160m G1 and stalked the early leaders until Callan Murray set him alight 400 metres from home. The colt sprinted smoothly away from his rivals to score by 4 lengths from his stablemate Naafer in 1:05.80. 

Watch Mustaaqeem win the Turffontein SA Nursery G1.
 
Speaking from Newmarket, UK after the victory, Angus recalled inspecting Mustaaqeem at the 2016 Inglis Easter Sale.

“I thought he was outstanding, with a very classy look. He was really well-balanced with a lovely head, and a ready-made stallion if he could run. And I got him on my very last bid, thank god!”

That bid was $1.75 million, the third highest price of the Sale and more than twice the $800,000 Shadwell Stud paid for Rafeef at the 2014 Inglis Easter Sale.

Rafeef, with a larger frame to grow into, required more time to develop but has found top sprinting form this season, winning four of his six starts including the Hawaii S. G2 and now the R1 million Computaform Sprint 1000m G1.

Watch Rafeef win the Turffontein Computaform Sprint G1.

Like his brother, Rafeef was bred by Arrowfield in partnership with Klawervlei Stud and is prepared for Sheikh Hamdan by champion trainer Mike de Kock. National Colour, herself a three-time Group 1 winner, has a yearling filly by Snitzel (bought by Arrowfield for $675,000 at Inglis Easter), a weanling colt by Redoute’s Choice and is again in foal to him.

The brothers take Redoute’s Choice’s tally of Group 1 winners to 32, among 146 lifetime stakeswinners. Mustaqeem is the supersire’s eighth Group 1 juvenile winner and joins Ardrossan, successful earlier on Saturday in New Zealand, on his list of 36 2YO stakeswinners.

They are two of the half-dozen stakeswinners that have already emerged from Arrowfield’s Yearling Class of 2016 after Invader (ATC Sires’ Produce S. G1), Gunnison (ATC Todman S. G2), Pariah (ATC Canonbury S. G3) and Azazel (MVRC Inglis Banner (R) LR).

That’s not the end of the database updates required after racing on 6 May. Robert Sangster S. G1 winner Secret Agenda, Rafeef and Mustaqeem boost the number of Arrowfield Group 1 graduates to sixty-four, a figure that Not A Single Doubt’s daughter Kenedna (2nd, Australasian Oaks G1) and Snitzel’s son Heavenly Blue (3rd, South African Derby G1) came close to increasing.

On the Australian General Sires’ premiership, Snitzel has quietly slipped past Street Cry this week to claim the top spot with $12.8 million and Not A Single Doubt is fifth with $9.4 million. Even with six offshore performers among his 15 stakeswinners this term, Redoute’s Choice has enough domestic firepower to sit just outside the top 10 with prizemoney of $5.8 million.