Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Kings of bloodstock

I am no pedigree expert but I certainly keep a keen eye on the bloodstock scene. After all, pedigree is one of the 3 most important ingredients when analyzing a race card, in my opinion. Most experts would concur that the best stallion in the world today is Galileo. I believe he is the only stallion with a "private" fee, which gives an indication of the special treatment and regard he is given. His impact as a sire has been very immediate with high-flyers like Soldier of Fortune, Sixties Icon, Age of Aquarius, Red Rocks, Rip Van Winkle etc; very much a lot from the Ballydoyle contingent.

What amazes me with Galileo is that this year, he seems to have reached even new heights with star performers like Treasure Beach, Roderic O'connor and more importantly, the unbeaten trio of Frankel, Maybe and South African-based Igugu.

The exploits of Frankel have been well documented. He's the wonder horse that most believe is unbeatable. Everyone is waiting for his next start. Then there's Maybe, who's added the Group 1 Moyglare Stud Stakes to her resume last week-end. She's unbeaten in five and is favourite for next year's 1000 Guineas. Then, there's Igugu who won South Africa's Golden Tiara, the country's Triple Crown, and whose trainer, Mike de Kock, rates as the equal of Ipi Tombe. Quite a reference to be associated with the wonder filly.

All 3 are worthy champions and are the dominating figures among their peers. Galileo can have his stock win at the highest level from 8 to 14 furlongs, which says a lot of his versatility as a sire. If his great sire Sadler's Wells was known mainly for producing high-class colts and fillies primed for Classic distances, Galileo looks to be able to produce equally-good speedier types.

If Galileo is that good, then one can only dream on the promise of his half-brother, Sea The Stars. There is no doubt that the racing world is awaiting with baited breath the introduction of the sons and daughters of the wonder horse in a couple of years. These are really exciting times for the bloodstock industry.

And talking of sons of Urban Sea, the press has it that Galileo's and Sea The Star's half-brother Born To Sea will be making his debut for John Oxx in a few weeks. His sire is Invincible spirit, so on paper, he should be a very precocious type. Certainly watch for the name on the future race cards.

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