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Southern Champions

Silvano is on course to record his second General Sires title

The 2016-2017 season is fast drawing to a close in the Southern Hemisphere, and champion sires will soon be crowned.


Fresh off being represented by the 1-2-5 finishers in the 2017 Gr1 Vodacom Durban July, Silvano is on course to record his second General Sires title (Arion also have him topping the Sires List in Slovakia in 2007), having last topped the list in 2013.

Silvano has been represented by 13 stakes winners this season, who have won 19 black type races in 2016-2017, including the abovementioned July, Gr1 SA Derby, Gr1 Wilgerbosdrift SA Fillies Classic and Gr1 Klawervlei Majorca Stakes, (Silvano fillies running 1-2 in the Majorca). His runners have earned more than R26.73 million, which puts him more than R9 million clear of runner up, Captain Al, who died on Wednesday.

Read more about Captain Al here

Former champion sire Captain Al is in second. Like Silvano, the late champion has been represented by 13 stakes winners, headed by the Gr1 winners, Carry On Alice and Captain America. Captain Al is clear of last season’s champion sire, Trippi, whose stakes winners in 2016-2017 include Premier’s Champions Challenge winner, Deo Juvente.

Var – ever reliable top-class

Var has enjoyed a remarkable run with his 2yos and the son of Forest Wildcat looks on course to end Captain Al’s eight year reign. Var, whose juveniles have earned R2.45 million, has been represented by 20 individual juvenile winners thus far, headed by Gr2 Durban Golden Horseshoe winner, Purple Diamond, and Gr1 Tsogo Sun Gold Medallion runner up, Varallo.

The now deceased Sail From Seattle has also had a cracking season with his juveniles, and has 19 two-year-old winners to his name. The son of Gone West is second leading sire of 2yos by prize money and individual winners, ahead of Gimmethegreenlight, Captain Al and Querari.

What A WinterWhat A Winter – top class

Former champion sprinter, and four time Gr1 winner, What A Winter, made a splash in the sales ring with his first yearlings last year, and the son of Western Winter continued his good start at stud by currently heading the first crop sires list. With two major 2yo races yet to be run, the first crop sires title appears to lie among What A Winter, Oratorio, and Twice Over. What A Winter is the leading first crop sire by stakes winners (3) and by prize money, with Oratorio and What A Winter being joint leading first crop sires by individual winners –the pair have eight apiece.

For the third year in a row, Fort Wood will be champion broodmare sire. Fort Wood mares have produced the earners of over R24.836 million this season. In comparison, runner up, Western Winter, is the broodmare sire of the earners of just over R16.281 million, which places him more than R8 million behind Fort Wood! The latter’s daughters have been represented by 11 stakes winners this season, headed by Gr1 Vodacom Durban July winner, Marinaresco, Gr1 Cape Guineas winner, William Longsword, and fellow Gr1 winners, Captain America and Nightingale, to name a few.


Six of the top ten sires (by prize money) on the premiership are descended from the unbeaten Danzig (seventh place finisher, Sebring, being out of a mare descended from Danzig), with Snitzel (Redoute’s Choice) currently heading the list, with his offspring having earned more than $15 000 000 this season. Snitzel, looking for a first general sires title, is currently clear of champion Winx’s sire, Street Cry, with dual champion, Fastnet Rock, back in third.

Snitzel’s son Heavenly Blue wins the Gr1 SA Classic

Snitzel, who enjoyed a record breaking season in terms of number of 2yo winners this season, totally dominated the 2yo list. He is sire of 32 2yo winners thus far, his juveniles having earned more than $4.8 million and he is more than $2 million clear of runner up Manhattan Rain (a half-brother to Snitzel’s sire, Redoute’s Choice). Manhattan Rain is responsible for this season’s Gr1 Longines Golden Slipper winner, She Will Reign – and Sun Met winner, Whiskey Baron.

Former champion, and Golden Slipper winner, Pierro (Lonhro) is Australia’s Leading First Crop Sire, with his six first crop winners including Gr3 winner, Tulip. Black Caviar’s half-brother, All Too Hard, is next on the list, ahead of Fastnet Rock’s Gr1 winning son, Your Song.

New Zealand

For a third year in a row, Savabeel (Zabeel) will be declared New Zealand’s Champion Sire. The former Cox Plate winner’s offspring have earned over $3 million during 2016-2017, which puts him more than $1 000 000 in front of runner up, Iffraaj (Zafonic). Savabeel’s 10 individual stakes winners this season have won 16 black type feature races thus far, including the Gr1 Otaki Maori WFA (Kawi), Gr1 Levin Turf Classic (Hall Of Fame), and Gr1 Horlicks Plate (Kawi).

Now deceased Danehill sire, Commands, heads the NZ 2yos sires list, thanks largely to his Gr1 winning daughter, Melody Belle, while Irish 2000 Guineas winner, Power (Oasis Dream), is currently the leading first crop sire in New Zealand for the 2016-2017 season.

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