Silvano Shines On July Day

Big day bonanza



Arguably the greatest equine hero on Vodacom Durban July day last Saturday was Maine Chance Farms’ outstanding sire Silvano. Not only did the son of Lomitas sire his third July winner (Bold Silvano and Heavy Metal having previously scored for their sire), but Silvano sons Power King, Punta Arenas and Tellina ran 1-2-3 in what is arguably South Africa’s greatest horse race. Silvano’s dominance in the July can also been seen by the fact that no fewer than five of the runners in the race were sired by him.

Champion Sire in South African in 2012-2013, Silvano (whose own sister produced the record breaking R5.2 million yearling at the 2015 CTS Premier Sale) has long been regarded as one of South Africa’s very elite stallions. His commercial appeal can be viewed by the fact that Silvano-sired yearlings fetched up to R2.7 million at the 2015 National Yearling Sale and two lots by him fetched R2 million plus at this year’s Cape Premier Yearling Sale. And his standing will on continue to rise following the result of Saturday’s big race.

Following the running of the 2015 Vodacom Durban July, Silvano has shot up to third place on the General Sires List, with his runners having now amassed more than R14 million in prize money during the 2014-2015 racing season. Clearly the general sires title for 2014-2015 is still very much up for grabs!

Power King - thrilling win

Power King wins the 2015 Vodacom Durban July

Power King, who has now earned over R2.8 million in stakes, is the 15th individual Grade/Group 1 winner for his sire. The 2015 Vodacom Durban July is another July hero produced by a Northern Guest mare, with the latter also the maternal grandsire of former July winner Pomodoro (Jet Master). Silvano has enjoyed past success when mated to Northern Guest daughters, having sired Gr2 Peninsula Handicap winner Arion out of the Northern Guest mare Alstroemaria.

Vintage crop

Silvano’s most successful crop to date in South Africa was his 2009 vintage. This crop included a stunning 17 individual stakes horses, headed by the Equus Champions Hot Ticket and Vercingetorix, Grade One winners Do You Remember (Woolavington Stakes) and Wavin’ Flag (Gold Cup), and the high class performers Silvano’s Jet (Betting World Derby) and Tellina, a R2 million plus earner who has now been placed in the last two runnings of the Vodacom Durban July.

While his Grade One winning colts outnumber his fillies by eleven to four, there can be no doubt that Silvano is more than capable of siring outstanding females –the likes of Do You Remember, Forest Flower, Flirtation and Happy Valentine, amongst others testifying to this, as does former German 1000 Guineas vixen Mi Emma.

Punta Arenas

Punta Arenas – bred on the Blushing Groom cross

Not unusually for a male line descendant of Nijinsky II, Silvano has built up an excellent record with Blushing Groom mares, with the likes of Heavy Metal, Martial Eagle and Tellina all bred on this highly successful cross. July runner up Punta Arenas is yet another Grade One performer produced by the Silvano/Blushing Groom cross, with the gelding being out of the Candy Stripes (Blushing Groom) mare Peru. Al Mufti mares have also done well with Silvano, with the combination producing champions Bold Silvano and Kings Gambit, and a number of above average performers.

August company

Having sired the first three home in a major Grade One race has also placed Silvano in some highly elite company. Previous top class races to have progeny of one sire to fight out the finish include the following: 1999 Irish Derby –Montjeu, Daliapour,Tchaikovsky ran 1-2-3 to give Sadler’s Wells the trifecta in one of Europe’s most prestigious classics. In the same year, the great Zabeel had the first three home in the Gr1 Caulfield Cup when Sky Heights prevailed over his paternal half siblings Laebeel and Inaflury. In the 2002 Irish Derby –High Chaparral, Sholokhov, Ballingarry and Nysaean ran 1-2-3-4 for Sadler’s Wells, to give their sire yet another Irish classic clean sweep. Remarkably, in the same year, Sadler’s Wells fillies Gossamer, Quarter Moon and Starbourne filled the first three spots in the Irish 1000 Guineas, and it is surely safe to say that few, if any, sires have ever enjoyed such a remarkable run of trifectas in Group 1 races than did Sadler’s Wells in 2002!

2002 Racing Post Trophy-the first four finishers Brian Boru, Powerscourt, Illustrator and The Great Gatsby gave legendary Sadler’s Wells a remarkable clean sweep by finishing 1-2-3-4 in the Racing Post Trophy of 2002. The form of this race proved very strong with the winner Brian Boru, going on to land the St Leger, runner up Powerscourt was first past the post in two Arlington Millions, and fourth home The Great Gatsby went on to run second in the Epsom Derby. 2006 St Leger –Galileo is regarded by many as an even greater sire than his own sire Sadler’s Wells, and the former Epsom Derby had his own clean sweep in a major classic when his sons Sixties Icon, The Last Drop and Red Rocks, ran 1-2-3 in the 2006 St Leger of 2006. 2009 –The Sadler’s Wells clan were not the only sires to dominate Group 1 races in Ireland. Danehill Dancer, who himself won the Phoenix Stakes 1995, is the sire of the first three home in the 2009 Phoenix Stakes.

Stud legacy

Silvano’s ongoing remarkable level of success at stud also lends further confidence to his young sons at stud, namely Bold Silvano and Vercingetorix, with the latter set to join his own sire at Maine Chance this season.

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