One of South Africa’s leading producers with a long list of champions, Ascot Stud celebrated a super Saturday courtesy of a Gr2 winner at both Turffontein and Meydan.
The likes of Bold Silvano, Rock Opera, Smart Banker, Enchanted Garden and Arabian Lass are just a few of the champions to have been bred by the Parker family at Ascot and they also bred the Gr2 Colorado King Stakes winner Coral Fever and past SA champion 2yo Rock Opera, the dam of Gr2 Godolphin Mile winner, Heavy Metal, who was the oldest horse to win on Dubai World Cup night.
Heavy Metal produced a powerful effort to win the $1 million Godolphin Mile for a first victory for trainer Sandeep Jadhav, who stepped in for Salem bin Ghadayer and saddled the 8yo son of Exceed And Excel for owner Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammad Al Maktoum.
Ridden by Ryan Moore, Heavy Metal led all the way and kept to his task for a decisive two-length win in 1:36.21
Jadhav was all smiles following the popular victory.
“He had a really nice trip. Heavy Metal is a dream horse for the yard. He fought to the winning line and then we all went crazy” Jadhav said. “It’s out of this world, a dream come true.”
Ryan Moore was elated: “We worked hard to get the lead through the first quarter but then he settled and travelled well for me in front. I was able to fill him up before the turn and into the straight I knew it would take a very big effort to get past me,” Moore said. “It appears a big advantage to be in front on this track and it played to his strengths. He is a terrifically consistent horse.”
Heavy Metal is out of former Equus Champion 2yo filly, Rock Opera. Bred by Ascot Stud, she was unbeaten at two, when she won the Gr1 Allan Robertson Fillies Championship. By Lecture, Rock Opera is out of the Al Mufti mare, Drummer Girl.
When sold by owner Basil Linnington to Sheik Rashid in 2005, Rock Opera was thought to be the most expensive South African filly ever sold. She was sadly not quite as effective in Dubai.
Ascot Stud’s Dr Ashley Parker said he was particularly proud.
“Coral Fever is getting better with age and won well. Rock Opera was a star 2yo. This is the family of Royal Drummer, Gulf Storm and Seattle Singer. They have served Ascot with honour!” he added.