One of the forgotten heroines of the South African racing season of 2018/19 is the mare Roxy Cafe.
The daughter of July winner and Horse Of The Year, Royal Chalice, left behind just six foals, with all four of her runners having won at least once, and two becoming black type performers.
Sarah Whitelaw writes that her daughters have ensured that Roxy Cafe’s name is unlikely to fade away anytime soon.
Roxy Cafe’s star performer was Gr1 Thekwini Stakes winner, Roxanne (Western Winter), whose son Putontheredlight (Pomodoro) ran second in last season’s Gr2 Durban Golden Horseshoe and who appears a natural classic contender for 2019-2020.
Remarkably, Putontheredlight was not the only high-class runner last season descended in female line from Roxy Cafe. Roxanne is also dam of Swallow Stakes winner Sting Operation (Captain Al), whose progeny include the promising Cape based colt, Silver Operator (Silvano). The latter impressed when romping home on debut (over 1400 metres), before going down just a short head, when only beaten by Snow Report (What A Winter), in the Gr3 Langerman.
Another daughter of Roxy Cafe to make her presence felt in 2018/19, was the stakes placed Se Agabor (Trippi). Third in the Listed Breeders Guineas, Se Agabor hit the mark with her very first foal being none other than Equus Champion, and Gr1 Thekwini Stakes heroine, Gabor (Kingsbarns). Beaten just once last season, Gabor, who is also an exceptionally attractive future broodmare prospect, clearly ranks among the front runners for some of the bigger 3yo races this season.
With a number of young mares still representing Roxy Cafe, she could well continue to make her mark on the South African turf, and her descendants look set to do her proud this season. A smart performer, who won five times up to 1600m, Roxy Cafe was produced by the high-class race mare, Jungle Class, a daughter of multiple champion sire, Jungle Cove (Bold Ruler).
Jungle Class’ own sister Classy Play is the granddam of Horse Of The Year and four time Gr1 winner, Legislate (Dynasty).
Other notable performers to have emerged from this family include Equus Champion, Forward Filly (National Assembly), SA Fillies Guineas heroine, She’s A Treat (Harry Hotspur), and Germiston November Handicap winner, Northern Princess (Northern Guest).
One of the best sons of Champion Sire, Royal Prerogative, Roxy Cafe’s sire Royal Chalice enjoyed relatively moderate success at stud, siring approximately 17 black type winners from 387 registered foals (or just over 4% of his foals were stakes winners).
He did, however, sire Gr1 Administrator’s Champion Futurity winner, Morisco (one of the better members of his crop), Gr1 Cape Guineas second, Superior Service, and the SA Oaks winning own sisters, Royal Prophecy and Noble Destiny, as well as the latter’s outstanding broodmare own sister Gypsy Queen.
Daughters of Royal Chalice have enjoyed some notable success at stud, with the likes of Gypsy Queen responsible for a trio of graded winners, including Gr1 Matriarch Stakes heroine, Gypsy’s Warning (Mogok). Other notable horses produced by a daughter of Royal Chalice include Gr1 Vodacom Durban July winner, Hunting Tower (Fort Wood), G1 Cape Fillies Guineas winner, Sparkling Gem (Joshua Dancer), the aforementioned Roxanne (Western Winter), and Grr1 Champions Cup victor, Master Plan.
Royal Chalice’s stakes winning daughter, Supreme Duel, was another daughter of the sire to make good as a broodmare – the Java Handicap winner was responsible for a trio of stakes winners, notably the graded stakes winning own sisters, Supreme Sunset (Gr2 Joburg Spring F&M Challenge) and Northern Heritage (Gr3 Champagne Stakes). Both Northern Heritage and Supreme Sunset were sired by Western Winter, also the sire of Roxanne!
Remarkably, Royal Chalice was damsire of another stakes winner by Western Winter in the form of UAE Oaks winner, Imperial Ice.
However, Royal Chalice’s prowess as a broodmare sire lags well behind his own sire, Royal Prerogative (Relko). The latter, a son of outstanding broodmare, Bride Elect (Big Game), was damsire of a slew of top-class performers, notably July winner and champion, Spanish Galliard (Gay Fandango), Met winners, Imperious Sue (dam of Gr1 winner Imperious Star) and Angus (both by Northern Guest), Garden Province Stakes winner, Lyrical Linda (dam of Gr1 Summer Cup winner, Liege and stakes winning sire, Lance), and top sprinter, Fov’s Favourite (Foveros).
Royal Prerogative was also damsire of outstanding broodmare, Dancing Flower, whose progeny include UAE Derby winner, and Gr1 sire, Victory Moon (Al Mufti) and Equus Champion, Kelly (Ethique). Dancing Flower is also granddam of the Gr1 winning half-siblings Real Princess (Trippi) and William Longsword (Captain Al), while the sire’s champion daughter, Scented Royal, is ancestress of a host of graded stakes winners, including Janoobi (Silvano), Sedge (Silvano), Philippa Johnson (Joshua Dancer), Chekilli (Greys Inn), Sweet Sanette (Jallad), and Franny (Trippi).