Expert Eye stamps stallion claims with authoritative Mile success
Juddmonte-bred colt is by Rathbarry Stud mainstay Acclamation
The power of Khalid Abdullah's Juddmonte operation came to the fore at Churchill Downs on Saturday as the homebred Expert Eye came with an irresistible late thrust to win the Breeders' Cup Mile.
The three-year-old colt becomes the fifth top-level winner sired by Rathbarry Stud's linchpin Acclamation, and the first to score in elite company at over 7f.
He joins Prix de la Foret winner Aclaim, Middle Park Stakes scorer Dark Angel, dual King's Stand Stakes victor Equiano and Nunthorpe and Prix de l'Abbaye heroine Marsha.
By an in vogue sire and now with a Grade 1 victory to his name to go with his win in the Vintage Stakes by clear water at two, Expert Eye looks certain to have earned himself a berth at stud.
Acclamation's three previous Group 1-winning sons have all taken up stud duty, and the two with offspring of racing age have both sired top-level winners themselves.
Dark Angel in particular has proved a resounding success since a premature end to his racing career saw him joins the ranks at Yeomanstown Stud in 2008 at a fee of just €10,000.
The grey has proved arguably the most upwardly mobile young stallion in Europe, having sired six top-flight winners, namely the brilliant sprinters Battaash, Harry Angel, Lethal Force and Mecca's Angel, as well as Queen Elizabeth II victress Persuasive and Shoemaker Mile Stakes scorer Hunt.
With just one covering season under his belt, Aclaim is still three years away from his first runners hitting the track, but he proved the most popular recruit to stud in Britain in 2018, having covered 160 mares at the National Stud.
Added to his fine race record and the commercial appeal of his sire-line, Expert Eye also boasts a rock-solid female family.
The three-year-old colt is the fourth generation of the maternal line to be bred by Juddmonte, and is out of Exemplify, a maiden winner at two by Dansili, a stalwart of the operation's Newmarket stallion base Banstead Manor Stud.
Exemplify is out of Quest To Peak, making her a half-sister to two black-type performers, most notably Special Duty, who won the Cheveley Park Stakes at two before, remarkably, she was awarded the English and French 1,000 Guineas in the stewards' room, having suffered trouble in running during both heats.
Expert Eye's third dam is Viviana, who produced five winning offspring, including dual Grade 1 winner Tates Creek and Sightseek, winner of an impressive seven top-flight events.
Since delivering Expert Eye, his dam has produced three more foals, the two-year-old Kingman filly Clerisy, a yearling colt by Dark Angel, and a colt foal by Kingman.
Expert Eye became the fifth Juddmonte homebred - and their first colt - to strike in the Breeders' Cup, following on from Filly & Mare Turf winners Midday (2009), Intercontinental (2005) and Banks Hill (2001), and Filly & Mare Sprint scorer Ventura (2008).
Just over an hour after Expert Eye's win, Enable became the sixth Juddmonte homebred to score at the meeting when backing up her second Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe victory with a hard-fought success in the Breeders' Cup Turf.
Juddmonte were also represented by Arrogate in the 2016 Breeders' Cup Classic, though the son of Unbridled's Song was a rare yearling purchase by the operation, having been bought from Keeneland for $560,000.
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