There are a host of young stallions retiring to stud in South Africa for the 2012 breeding season. The sires range from young horses standing their first seasons to proven stallions with international success behind them. There is also a range of locally bred sires combined with a number of blue blooded imports. All in all, the new crop of sires for 2012 promise to provide plenty of interest in the seasons to come.
The stallions mentioned are just a few of the sires who will stand in South Africa for the first time this year.
Antigua Island: Standing at Middlefield Stud
The first son of Black Minnaloushe to stand at stud in South Africa, Antigua Island was prevented by injury from ever reaching the racetrack. Like leading sire Var, Antigua Island is a grandson of Storm Cat, and he has a lovely pedigree, as he is out of that wonderful racemare Jamaica. The latter, the Equus Champion Older Mare of 2005, was a game front runner whose 11 victories included three G1 races and she also beat males when she won the G2 November Handicap. Jamaica (Sportsworld), who sadly died young, is also dam of the useful performer, Bermuda Winter. Rob Pickering describes Antigua Island as “a big, beautiful chestnut Black Minnaloushe, he is a dead ringer for his mother!”
Bold Silvano: Standing at Ascot Stud
A magnificent stamp of a horse, Bold Silvano was one of the best performers of his generation, which included such standouts as Irish Flame and Noordhoek Flyer. Bold Silvano will forever be remembered for his remarkable win in the Vodacom Durban July of 2010 , where he beat such champions as Irish Flame, Pocket Power, River Jetez and Aslan. Exported to Dubai, Bold Silvano made a winning debut when he landed the G3 Al Maktoum Challenge. In that win Bold Silvano conquered the likes of Singapore Cup hero Gitano Hernando and Dubai Duty Free victor Al Shemali. Sadly injury prevented Bold Silvano from showing his true potential. The first son of leading sire Silvano to stand at stud in South Africa, Bold Silvano is out of an Al Mufti mare. This cross also produced champion Kings Gambit.
Gimmethegreenlight: Standing at Varsfontein Stud
A truly eye catching specimen, Gimmethegreenlight was among the leaders of his generation at both two and three. The winner of his first four starts at two, Gimmethegreenlight was unlucky not to win a G1 race at two when he was sent to Durban. Returned to the Cape for the Summer Season, Gimmethegreenlight ran a series of top races in defeat, before winning the country’s premier WFA mile event, the G1 L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate. He was the first 3yo to win the race in 39 years, and followed in the footsteps of such greats as Politician, Sea Cottage and champion sire Jet Master. A son of world leading sire More Than Ready (sire of 3 Breeders Cup winners), Gimmethegreenlight is a half-brother to Australian G1 winner, Ofcourseican (Mossman). Like leading SA sires Victory Moon and Captain Al, Gimmethegreenlight is a descendant of Hail To Reason.
Golden Sword: Standing at Summerhill Stud
A world-class racehorse, Golden Sword went head to head with some of the great names of his generation. He ran the legendary Sea The Stars to 2 lengths when fifth in the Epsom Derby, and was second to multiple G1 winner Fame And Glory in the Irish Derby. Golden Sword also emulated legends Hyperion and Shergar when he won the G3 Chester Vase. He defeated such G1 winners as Debussy (Arlington Million), Crowded House (Racing Post Trophy), Frozen Fire (Irish Derby) and Scintillo (Gran Criterium). Golden Sword is by champion High Chaparral, sire of such stars as Wrote (Breeders Cup) and So You Think. Like former champion SA sire, Royal Prerogative (Relko), Golden Sword is a descendant of the mighty mare, Lost Soul.
Main Aim: Standing at Highlands Farm
Main Aim is one of the best performed sons of leading sire Oasis Dream to retire to stud in 2012. A dual winner of the G3 John O’Gaunt Stakes, Main Aim put up his best ever performance when he ran second in the G1 Darley July Cup (UK’s sprint championship). Second in that prestigious event, Main Aim conquered such legends as J J The Jet Plane and Australian sensation Takeover Target (Celtic Swing). His sire Oasis Dream won the July Cup back in 2003. Now one of the world leading sires, Oasis Dream stands for a fee of over R1 million. Main Aim is bred on the same Danzig/Sharpen Up cross as world leading sire Danehill Dancer, and is from the same family as breed shaping sires, Mr Prospector and Seattle Slew.
Pathfork: Standing at Highlands Farm
Pathfork is the first son of world leading sire Distorted Humor to stand in South Africa. Distorted Humor is sire of Flower Alley, sire of 2012 Kentucky Derby winner I’ll Have Another. An unbeaten 2yo sensation, Pathfork won the G1 National Stakes at two, before injury interrupted his career. The National Stakes, Ireland’s major 2yo event, has been previously by such leading sires as El Prado, Roberto, Dubawi, Sir Ivor and Storm Bird. His dam is a stakes winning half-sister to Breeders Cup Mile winner, and successful sire, Spinning World. She is by the mighty Sadler’s Wells, arguably the greatest sire ever to stand in Europe.
Philanthropist: Standing at Drakenstein Stud
A proven success at stud, Philanthropist is one of the best bred young sires to enter stud in South Africa. Philanthropist is a son of the great sire Kris S, sire of top US sire Arch and damsire of champion Zenyatta. Kris S was one of the great sires sons of legendary stallion Roberto. Like leading SA sire National Assembly, Philanthropist is a direct descendant of Grey Flight, whose descendants include numerous G1 winners and champions. A smart racetrack performer himself, Philanthropist is already sire of a champion in Pender Harbour. The latter, a champion at 3, won two legs of the Canadian Triple Crown – one of North America’s toughest tasks for 3yos.
Traffic Guard: Summerhill Stud
Like Gimmethegreenlight, Traffic Guard is a son of outstanding sire More Than Ready. More Than Ready has been represented by G1 winners around the world, and is the sire of a pair of Golden Slipper winners in Sebring and Phelan’s Ready respectively. A top-class performer himself, Traffic Guard won five races including the August Stakes, which he won by eight lengths!. Arguably the best race he ever ran, however, was when he was a close second to world champion (and Epsom Derby winner) New Approach in the G1 Irish Champion Stakes. He is from the family of successful Australian sire, Le Cordonnier.