Dream De Ra!

Var's Champion daughter Val De Ra in the limelight with her first foal and a big date ahead


Val De Ra. Champion sprinter

Var’s sensational speed queen Val De Ra has a date with Frankel, and showed her equally magical maternal mettle when giving birth to a beautiful filly by Oasis Dream on Tuesday this week.

Any self respecting racing enthusiast knows all about the Katy Perry of the equine female ranks.

In a phenomenal racing career spanning four years, the blazing beauty raised the pulses and captured a special place in all of our hearts.

Val De Ra won 11 of her 13  starts, including four Group Ones: the 2011 Computaform Sprint, the SA Fillies  (twice in consecutive years 2010 and 2011) and the Cape Flying Championships. In total she earned approximately R1 848140.

Crowned the Equus Champion Sprinter for the 2010-11 season, her greatest moment arguably came when she beat What A Winter in the 2012 Cape Flying Championship.

Green Desert’s brilliant speed son Oasis Dream has impeccable credentials and certainly has the stamp of an ideal first partner for Val De Ra.

He is the sire of 30 individual stakes performers so far in 2013, including Nunthorpe Stakes Gr1 winner Jwala, German 2000 Guineas winner Peace At Last and Jersey Stakes Gr3 winner and Irish 2000 Guineas runner-up Gale Force Ten.

Proud Mom

Proud Mom. Val De Ra nurses her little bundle of joy

Oasis Dream is also the leading sire in Europe by individual winners and wins in 2012 and in 2013

He is the leading British-based sire of 2yos in 2013 by percentage winners to runners and no sire in the history of the European pattern has sired more two-year-old pattern winners from their first four crops.

Val De Ra is currently based just outside Newmarket at Arran House Stud with Walter and Fran Cowe and the most exciting news now, after Tuesday’s birth, is that she has been accepted as one of the 20 mares that Frankel will cover in Southern Hemisphere time in 2013.

And that will happen in about a month from now.

A thrilled Avontuur GM Pippa Mickleburgh, who has been labelled the lady with the Midas touch, after the sensational international stakes winning run of their new stallion Oratorio this year, was breathless when breaking the wonderful news this week about the gorgeous youngster:

“We live in exciting times! We are hoping at this stage that Val De Ra gets in foal to Frankel as soon as possible. That will facilitate  the plan to fly her back to South Africa early in 2014 in foal, and with her Oasis Dream filly at foot. She has to go into quarantine in South Africa  until she foals down to Frankel, so unfortunately she will not be with us for that, but it is a reality beyond our control,” she said diplomatically.

When questioned on the future plans for Val De Ra’ s offspring, Pippa said that everything was ‘fluid’, with nothing cast in stone.

“The filly will enjoy the lush Avontuur paddocks for a while, and may, I assume,  be offered for sale in 2015. We obviously need to keep a clear head and also consider the economics of the exercise. A lot will depend on how the export market has improved with our shipping issues by the time it comes to sell her yearlings. There are other considerations, like the flexibility of a prospective international buyer  moving the youngsters out.  Obviously, another exciting consideration is that a Frankel colt would be a wonderful yearling to retain for the stud later on!  But we will be applying our minds and doing what is best for these prized horses and everyone involved,” she said.

The Equine Superman. Frankel wins his penultimate start

The Equine Superman. Frankel wins his penultimate start

Frankel (Galileo-Kind), a champion at two, three and four when trained by the late Sir Henry Cecil, is widely considered the greatest horse to have set foot on the British turf. Unbeaten in 14 starts, Frankel retired to stud with a Timeform Rating of 147 – the highest to date.

He stands at a fee of £125 000 and covered some of the world’s finest broodmares in his first season at stud, among them Danedream, Finsceal Beo, Midday and Stacelita, as well as Binche (dam of exciting new sire Byword) and Oatsee (dam of Preakness Stakes hero Shackleford).

Val De Ra is by  the brilliant Avontuur frontman Var, out of the Elliodor mare, Minelli.

She was bred by Avontuur and raced throughout her career in the strikingly familiar blue, white and red silks of the champion equine and winning wine producing estate.


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