Tracing Sire Trails

Silvano makes history for Triple Crown winner

When Silvano became South Africa’s champion sire for the 2012-2013 season, he became the first Nijinsky II male line horse to win a general sires title since Royal Academy headed the general sires list in Brazil in 2005-2006.

Prior to that, Green Dancer (France 1991), Lomitas (Germany 2001) and Caerleon (UK 1991) had been the only scions of the great horse to become official champion sires.

While the above named are the only official champion sires to trace directly back to Nijinsky II,  a number of other sons of the 1970 Triple Crown have also made an important contribution to the modern thoroughbred. While never actually heading the general sires list, Nijinsky II’s son Dancing Champ was an excellent sire – who produced 36 stakes winners from 333 local foals (11%). He later became a proficient broodmare sire – with his daughters memorably producing a Breeders Cup winner and successful NZ sire (Success Express). Other successful sire sons of Nijinsky II include Sky Classic, Whiskey Road, and Baldski.

Whiskey Road’s son Strawberry Road himself became an extremely successful sire in a short stud career, while another son, Ile de Bourbon, is the sire of the highly effective, but unfashionable sire, Kahyasi. His son, Tights, is the broodmare sire of fashionable young sire, and ten time G1 winner, So You Think – while Royal Academy’s son, Bel Esprit, is the sire of the immortal Black Caviar.

While more fashionable sire sons of Nijinsky II failed at stud, his stout son Niniski prospered. He produced the successful sires Hernando (sire of exciting local sire Gitano Hernando) and leading sire Lomitas – while another son of Niniski, Kala Dancer, sired Melbourne Cup hero Subzero.  While Niniski’s King George winner Petoski was a poor sire, he did sire German Oaks winner and outstanding broodmare Night Petticoat. Lomitas, who sired 47 stakes winners , has strong claims to being one of the most successful sire descendants of Nijinsky II. Not only is he the sire of Silvano, but Lomitas has another seven G1 winners to his credit, including Arc de Triomphe winner Danedream.

The name of Nijinsky II can be found in the pedigree of such successful sires as Dansili, Fastnet Rock and Halling, to name a few.

The Nijinsky II male line has been especially effective in South Africa. Through the likes of Dancing Champ, Peacetime, Russian Fox, Nijinsky II made his mark felt – while another son, Piaffer, is the broodmare sire of former July winner Dunford.

Nijinsky II’s Breeders Cup winner Royal Academy not only sired champion Eyeofthetiger and Guineas hero Express Way, but he also sired of outstanding broodmare Mystic Spring (dam of champion Rabiya, and second dam of current champion filly All Is Secret).


Northern Dancer overwhelms in SA Grade One features

There has been plenty written about the dominance of Northern Dancer in the modern day pedigree – and the legendary stallion certainly dominates local breeding.

Of the 28 Grade One winners successful in the 2012-2013 season, only one (Captain Of All) has no lines of Northern Dancer.
The remaining 27 top flight winners include no fewer than 18 Grade One winners inbred to the 1964 Kentucky Derby winner.
Two others (All Is Secret, Wylie Hall) while not inbred themselves, have a parent inbred to Northern Dancer.

The 18 individuals accounted for no fewer than 21 grade one victories during the past 2012-2013 season.
Northern Dancer himself is the direct ancestor of the majority of South Africa’s major races. All of the Champions Cup, J&B Met, President’s Champion Challenge, Sansui Summer Cup and Vodacom Durban July of 2012-2013 were won by male line descendants of Northern Dancer.

Northern Dancer line horses (Silvano, Antonius Pius) head up both the general sires list, and the leading first crop sires list, while a grandson of the mighty stallion, Fort Wood, is well clear on the leading broodmare sires list.
Perhaps it is thus no wonder that of the 364 lots catalogued for the upcoming Emperors Palace National 2yo Sale, no fewer than 199, or 54%, are direct male line descendants of Northern Dancer.

With world leading sires Dubawi, Exceed And Excel, Fastnet Rock, Redoute’s Choice, Rock of Gibraltar, Dansili and Oasis Dream (to name a few) all inbred to Northern Dancer, and all sires, or potential sires, of locally based stallions, the influx of top-class Grade One winners inbred to the greatest sire in history seems set to continue.


New Approach VS Galileo

Sensational young sire New Approach has made a stunning start to his stud career.

Responsible for a hatrick of winners at Royal Ascot last year, the 2008 Epsom Derby winner (who has really struck a blow for Derby winners as sires) was represented by the eighth stakes winner from a stunning first crop when Cap O’Rushes won the G3 Gordon Stakes at Goodwood last week. Cap O’Rushes is now in a position to give New Approach a third classic winner from his first crop of runners when he lines up in the St Leger next month.
In contrast his sire Galileo (considered by several judges as better than his own sire Sadler’s Wells) had 13 first crop stakes winners in his initial Northern Hemisphere crop of foals. This crop included two classic winners (Nighttime and Sixties Icon) – a feat matched by New Approach (Talent and Dawn Approach).

What is striking about New Approach is that his sire, grandsire and great grandsire racked up no fewer than 27 general sires title.
Between them, Galileo, Sadler’s Wells and Northern Dancer sired (at the time of writing) have sired over 500 stakes winners. Galileo, however, has made, arguably, a better start as a sire of sires than did Sadler’s Wells (for a long time decried as a failed sire of sires prior to Montjeu, El Prado, Galileo, etc).

Hopefully, South African can gain a son of Galileo, or his potential heir elect, before too long.


1-2 for Allegretta tribe

One of the greatest broodmares in recent times is the Timeform Rated 97 Allegretta.

A daughter of Lombard who was described in training as a “tall, leggy filly”, Allegretta produced top class performers by sons of Mr Prospector – Urban Sea (Miswaki) and King’s Best (Miswaki).

Allegretta is also to be found in the pedigree of the rapidly improving French performer Vancouverite – who has won his last three on the trot. Vancouverite (Dansili) won the recent Listed Prix Pelleas in eye catching fashion, defeating another Allegretta descendant, Terrubi, by three lengths. Vancouverite looks a nice type for the future, and, with his pedigree, has already, no doubt, established himself as potential stud prospect.

Promising young sire Tamayuz is the sire of Tuesday’s G3 Molecomb Stakes hero Brown Sugar. Tamayuz, whose first crop included the high-class G2 winner Sir Prancelot (himself now at stud),won five of seven races including the G1 Prix Jacques Le Marois and Prix Jean Prat. A son of Nayef, the dual G1 winner is a great grandson of Allegretta.

Allegretta’s principal influence, however, comes through the deeds of Urban Sea’s outstanding son Galileo, who has been represented by four Grade One winners this season. Galileo, sire of the 1-2 home in Thursday’s G3 Meld Stakes, is also an increasingly successful sire of sires.

To date, the multiple champion sire has been represented by no fewer than 34 Grade/Group One winners.
Galileo’s champion half-brother, Sea The Stars, recently got off the mark when juveniles Stars Over The Sea and Sea The Skies won for their first season sire. Much is expected of the former Prix de L’Arc De Triomphe winner at stud – although the fact remains that his sire Cape Cross, as decent a sire as he is, can hardly be compared to Galileo’s sire – the immortal Sadler’s Wells.

That said, Allegretta’s influence looks set to continue during the coming years.

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