Trio of Smaller Owner-Breeders 2018

Discussion in 'Horse Racing' started by Bustino74, Mar 31, 2018.

  1. Bustino74

    Bustino74 Thouroughbred Breed Enthusiast

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    For the trio of other owner-breeders I normally follow (M H Dixon, Cliveden stud and Lady Howard de Walden) these are years of flux. The owner-breeder going through the least flux (maybe) is Cliveden Stud.

    For years the key mare has been Independence (now 20), who has been on and off the only ancestor of Cliveden’s Derby winner’s ( that’s Reference Point) dam Home on the Range in the stud. She has bred many winners including the Group winners Mount Nelson and Monitor Closely. In addition Cliveden have had sold many yearling colts (and fillies) for good prices, and mares are in other studs. Meanwhile Cliveden retired the winning filly Singersongwriter to their stud but after producing a filly foal the mare died, leaving Cliveden in a precarious position with this family. So a filly from the family was bought last year for 82,000euros. She is a Slade Power filly out of a Refuse to Bend half-sister to Independence called Inspirational and she is in training with Ed Dunlop. Dunlop also trains Singersongwriter’s daughter Melodies. By Ifraaj, she showed some promise as a 2yo but to me appeared a little weak. If she has done well over the winter she can win her maiden. Her dam won over 10f, so I’d be looking for a win over 8f at least. Independence’s 2yo colt by Oasis Dream (called Valence and in training with Ed Dunlop) was sold as yearling and there is a full-brother yearling this year while the mare is due to foal to Golden Horn.

    Last year’s best horse for Cliveden was the filly Horseplay, who is by Cape Cross out of a mare called Mischief Making. She started last season by winning the Pretty Polly Stakes at Newmarket and followed that up with a 4th in the Oaks. She then ran another 4th in a French Group 2 before running down the field in her final start. She remains in training with Balding and it will be interesting where they aim her. She has not won over further than 10f yet ran three races over further last year. I would like to see her starting in another 10f race, for example the York May meeting Group 2. Cliveden sold Horseplay’s dam so she is the sole member of the Francfurter family (bought in the late ‘80s to provide a suitable mare for their Derby winner Reference Point) in the stud. It would be good to see her win a listed winner and I believe she is capable of that. Her half-sister More Mischief, a good listed winner trained by Jedd O’Keefe for Sam Spinner’s owners, was up to Group level.

    The most established family in the Cliveden Stud is that tracing back to the sisters Mils Bomb and Milly Moss, who were wonderful fillies trained by Noel Murless. There are currently 4 mares from this family owned by Cliveden but only one filly in training this year and that is the unraced 3yo Exeat. By Oasis Dream out of the Street Cry mare Brevity she is half-sister to Balding’s twice winning Brief Visit (now at stud). Cliveden would be delighted if Exeat can do a little better than her Fastnet Rock sister, who similarly was unraced as a 2yo. Much is hoped for Brevity as she has a yearling colt by Muharrar and is due to Kingman. Brevity’s dam is Cut Short. Her 2yo filly was sold as a yearling which is rare for a Cliveden filly. She is by Kingman and called Rux Power and trained by Balding for King Power Ltd who seems to have become King Power’s leading trainer (see later).: no wonder Balding has become a Leicester City fan! Cut Short is due to Muharrar this year. More of this family later but I would really like to see this family produce another star horse.

    It is beginning to look as if the De Walden name is signing off as regards horseracing, which is a great shame. Last year was a blank for the owner and the Avington Manor Stud. In addition it now looks as if the stud is down to one mare (that mare is Gravitation although she may have a daughter but that is not clear at the moment). Two mares seem to have moved out of the stud in 2016/7 season, which was a surprise. Gravitation is beautifully bred being by Galileo out of Guaranda, who just happens to a half-sister to Fame and Glory and Legatissimo’s dam. She has been a good mare without being an exceptional mare. This mare’s best produce has been the Cape Cross colt Gibeon, trained by Hannon. This year, her Lawman colt Gendarme should follow up his 2yo promise with a maiden win: and then hopefully some handicaps. There is currently a 2yo full-sister to Gibeon called Gamba, who is currently not placed with a trainer (but it’s likely to be Hannon or Beckett). Gravitation’s yearling is the wonderfully named Grinling (being by Mastercraftsman), while she should produce a Holy Roman Emperor foal this year. The missing daughter is a filly called Gemina (by HRE) who ran twice as as a 2yo winning once. She did not run again so I do not know if she survived.

    The last offspring of the Magic Flute/Grand Lodge line is Parisian, but this gelding does not look up to much. Hopefully Gendarme will bring some sparkle this year

    The final owner is Dick Hollingsworth’s nephew Mark Dixon. 2017 was a pretty dull year (with just one owned horse win) until Newmarket’s yearling sales, when his yearling filly by Frankel out of Prowess (part owned with the Ashbrittle Stud) was sold for 1.75 million guineas (a record for a Frankel yearling). This half-sister to their Oaks winner Talent was purchased by King Power and uninspiringly called King Power and put into training with Balding. Prowess has a yearling filly by Dubawi called Deft (being already named it is likely this filly will be retained) and is due to New Approach this year (so a full sister or brother to Talent). Unsurprisingly Prowess is to return to Frankel this year.

    Talent has her first foal Ambition (by Dubawi) in training this year with Hughes. She is worth a great deal though it will be surprising if she attains the heights of Talent. Talent won as a 2yo and I’d expect Ambition to be a 2yo winner. Talent has a yearling colt by Dansili and is due to Dubawi before visiting Sea the Stars: exciting times. Surprisingly ambition is the only Ashbrittle partnership horse in training, whereas the Mount Coote partnership has 4 horses in training. The mare most represented is La Spezia who became a black type mare in 2017 through the Royal Ascot 3rd by Thomas Hobson, who at the same meeting won the Ascot Stakes. Dixon has a 4yo called Palermo who doesn’t appear up to much, while the 3yo is an unraced Arakan colt called Fearless who is likely to be with Osborne. The 2yo is the attractively bred Lara who is by Camelot and to be trained by Beckett. An interesting prospect but likely to be a 3yo rather than a 2yo. La Spezia has a Born to Sea yearling colt and visits Australia this year.

    The Mount Coote/Dixon partnership also owned the now deceased mare Lakatoi, she was a daughter of Hollingsworth’s 1980 Oaks winner Bireme. She has a 2yo Zebedee gelding called Last Rock who is yet to be placed with a trainer. She did produce a final filly by Power, already named Punting, who I’m sure Dixon would hope carries on this other Felsetta/Bireme line. We shall see her next year.

    The other mare with a horse in training this year is Jumpship, and again she is a slightly different Bireme line as she descends from a different daughter of the Oaks winner (a sister to Prowess’s dam called Lightship). She is solely owned by Dixon and has produced winners but not of the class of Prowess or La Spezia. This year she has an unraced 2yo called Climb Aboard (by Mayson) with Morrison and has interestingly sent a Mukhadram filly called Waterfall to Lucy Wadham. She obviously pleased Dixon with the way she handled another of his horses, Bari, a few years back. I do not expect Waterfall to be a 2yo but I would not be surprised to see her being a reasonable 3yo.

    These are key years (2018-20) for Dixon, as the stallions he has used are in a different league to those used 10 years ago. This year’s stallions are Frankel, Sea the Stars, Ifraaj, New Bay (a son of Dubawi), Zarak (a son of Dubawi), Australia, New Approach and Spill the Beans. When you look at a list like that you realise these are sires out of the top drawer. The choice of the two Dubawi sons is interesting and can only be explained by satisfaction with the Dubawi foals they’ve had. Maybe 2019 and 2020 will be more exciting but 2018 is a key year for the Dixon horses.
     
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  2. Bustino74

    Bustino74 Thouroughbred Breed Enthusiast

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    Parisian may not be up to much but he was up to winning a Kempton 11f handicap off a rating of 60. Blinkers, front running and/or the increased d have istance found Parisian headed below the distance and then fighting back to win going away. Looks as if 12f will suit him. A nice filip for Lady Howard de Walden.

    Cliveden have had Melodies and Exeat entered but Exeat makes his career debut in the Saint Bridget Stakes (7f) for unraced fillies on Friday. Balding is in good form and I'd advise each way interest.

    Dixon's Climb aboard makes his first bow in the hot Newbury maiden on Saturday. Hopefully he will show promise and go on from there. Star mare Prowess has produced a full-sister to Talent, while Talent has produced a full-sister to this year's 2yo Ambition. They had a Siyouni filly out of Talent's full-sister Forte and so the ashbrittle stud may have 4 filly-foals if Talent's half-sister Much Promise produces an Ifraaj filly in the next 2 weeks.
     
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  3. Bustino74

    Bustino74 Thouroughbred Breed Enthusiast

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    Horseplay returns tomorrow and despite being 4th in last year's Oaks is the outsider of the field. This is her first return to the distance she won over last Spring. My feeling is she'll be better over this distance, while the stable was saying earlier that she need 12f+.The favourite is likely to be Gosden's Coronet, yet Horseplay beat her in the Oaks. We'll see...
     
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  4. Bustino74

    Bustino74 Thouroughbred Breed Enthusiast

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    Mark Dixon appears to have got 8 foals out of 8 with no accidents. A Dubawi filly out of Talent looks the most eyecatching. Some of these will go through the sales ring next year. His Climb Aboard ran poorly FTO but ran a very promising race next time. Must have chances if taking up engagments next week.

    Horseplay looked well and ran well but was outclassed by Coronet.

    Gendarme gives Lady Howard de Walden a runner today at Newbury, her first on the turf this year. 22-1 at the moment, he doesn't seem fancied and it appears the Haggas horse is home and hosed already.
     
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  5. Bustino74

    Bustino74 Thouroughbred Breed Enthusiast

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    Important time for Cliveden. On Friday Exeat makes her 2nd start at Chelmsford. Not the easiest of maidens she will do well to score on this occasion. However her half-sister Brief Visit showed distinct improvement on her 2nd and 3rd starts, finally winning usefully on her final start as a 3yo (she won as a 4yo too).. It will be disappointing if Exeat doesn't show improvement on Friday night (Probert rides).
    More important is Horseplay's 2nd run of the year in the Lancashire Oaks on Saturday. Her performance at York behind Coronet now looks even better after that filly's 2nd in the Grand Prix de Saint Cloud. Flattering looks the likely favourite but it will be a huge disappointment if Horseplay doesn't play a part in the finish.
    One 2yo worth looking out for is Rux Power (f by Kingman) who was sold by Cliveden and snapped up by the King Power man. She is a half-sister to Brevity, the dam of Exeat and Brief Visit. Trained by Balding she is yet to be entered.
    It also looked as if Cliveden's other 3yo filly Melodies would run soon, but despite entries this filly waits for another day. Once the going eases I can see this filly taking her chance in a minor maiden.
    To finish off there are 5 2018 foals. The stand out is a Kingman colt out of Brevity, . Let's hope his conformation and constitution matches his pedigree. He's likely to be sold as a yearling.
     
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  6. Bustino74

    Bustino74 Thouroughbred Breed Enthusiast

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    A Group 2 for Cliveden with a gutsy Lancashire Oaks win. Little doubt that Balding will be looking for a Group1 now for Horseplay. Whatever she does she's worth a good deal as a broodmare now.
    Also pleasing to see Exeat improve considerably to take 3rd in a surprisingly hot novice event at Chelmsford. A true maiden and 8f may see her home.
    We only need Melodies now. She is entered for a maiden at Doncaster next week
     
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  7. Bustino74

    Bustino74 Thouroughbred Breed Enthusiast

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    Terrific follow-up to Horseplay's victory with Melodies coming out at Doncaster to present Philip Freedman with a further winner. Not the greatest race ever but she beat the favourite fairly comfortably. As the only daughter of Singersongwriter this Ifraaj filly is very valuable as she remains at the moment the only descendent of Independence in his ownership. It is not clear yet whether Independence had a foal by Golden Horn this year.
    To me Melodies appeared a little weak last year and I hoped she would come on this season. This run showed her to have ability and to be resolute in her finish. She can go on from this.
    All that's needed now is for Exeat to give Cliveden Stud 3 older filly winners this year. Would be nice to see some of the studs' 2yos win as well!
     
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  8. Bustino74

    Bustino74 Thouroughbred Breed Enthusiast

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    Cliveden are the only show in town at the moment for these 3 breeders. Rux Power on her 2nd start looked very promising at Goodwood and she must have a good chance of breaking her duck next time out. Cliveden seem to have 4 yearling colts which normally (not always) get sold at the October yearling sales. This year none of them have made Book 1, so some nicely bred colts (by Australia, Muharrar and Oasis Dream for example) may be sold in the later Books.

    As regards the Cliveden owned horses Exeat drops to handicap company at Kempton tomorrow. Her last two starts have been promising but she now needs to deliver.

    Nothing from Dixon or De Walden.
     
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  9. Bustino74

    Bustino74 Thouroughbred Breed Enthusiast

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    Well that was just about it. Lady Howard de Walden had no returns from Gamba and Gendarme. Dixon had no flat winners but achieved a winner in a bumper with Fearless (a Arakan brother to Thomas Hobson). Apparently he's been sold.

    Cliveden didn't get Exeat to win so Horseplay and Melodies were their only wins. Horseplay continued to run well and was narrowly beaten in the Park Hill. On the breeding front it was a sad year with the loss of Concise ( a Lemon Drop Kid sister to Brevity: who leaves an Ifraaj filly foal) and the tragic loss of Independence. This mare had been a wonderful servant for the stud and is represented by her graddaughter Melodies. Independence's last produce was sold for 140,000gns. She will be sorely missed.

    Hopefully these three will have better 2019s.
     
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