Champion two-year-old Air Force Blue to shuttle in 2017
Three-time Group 1 winner to stand at A$16,500
Air Force Blue is to shuttle from Coolmore's Ashford Stud in Kentucky to their Australian arm in the Hunter Valley for the 2017 southern hemisphere breeding season.
Trained by Aidan O’Brien, Air Force Blue won five of his six starts at two, including a trio of Group 1 events, the Phoenix Stakes, National Stakes and Dewhurst Stakes, after which he was crowned European champion two-year-old colt for 2015.
He defeated Massaat by three and a quarter lengths for the latter success, running to a Racing Post Rating (RPR) of 125, making him the joint highest-rated son of War Front with The Factor. He was retired from racing at the end of a fruitless three-year-old campaign.
“I was very excited to travel to see Air Force Blue this week and couldn’t have been more impressed with him” said Coolmore Australia sales and nominations manager Colm Santry.
“He’s got a great hind part with a massive hip, plenty of strength and real quality. He is a lovely walker and given how important action is at yearling sales, I think commercial breeders here will be very taken with him when they see him in the spring.”
Air Force Blue was bred by Stone Farm out of the Listed-placed Maria’s Mon mare Chatham, who hails from the same family as 1994 champion US juvenile filly Flanders and her four-time Grade 1-winning daughter Surfside.
He was bought by MV Magnier for $490,000 from the 2014 Keeneland September Yearling Sale.
The news comes a little over a week after it was revealed that Coolmore are also to shuttle their US Triple Crown-winning resident American Pharoah.
“I’m a strong believer in the best racehorses making the best sires and Air Force Blue was an incredible two year-old” added Santry. “We have received an overwhelming response to American Pharoah, with great breeders like John Camilleri, Gerry Harvey, Sheikh Mohammed Bin Khalifa Al Maktoum, Gooree, George Altomonte and many more booking quality mares within hours of his announcement.
"He is now fully booked with plenty of others on a waiting list. There’s a real appetite amongst breeders for these elite racehorses and Air Force Blue sits comfortably in that category.”
Air Force Blue has been introduced to the Australian market at a fee of A$16,500 (£10,210/€11,780).