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Monday, 21 January, 2019

Five things we learned this week: the thrill of ownership burns bright

Mark Scully looks back on another busy week for the industry

Clive Washbourn: Danceteria's owner was in fine form following his horse's win at Newmarket on Saturday
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Owning winners still among sport's great thrills

Racegoers at Newmarket remained packed around the July course winner's enclosure following Saturday's 1m2f Class 2 handicap for much longer than usual.

Of course, they were keen to get a look at the impressive winner Danceteria, for whom bigger and better things surely beckon, but the main attraction was the son of Redoute's Choice's charismatic owner Clive Washbourn, who was in no mood to hide his delight.

Washbourn roared his approval upon being reunited with his progressive gelding and in the subsequent on-course interview spoke of the brilliance of his trainer, David Menuisier, his jockey Jason Watson, Watson's agent Tony Hind, and even the race's sponsor, BBAG, whose manager Klaus Eulenberger wore the look of a man who had never witnessed such scenes. Washbourn rounded it all off by promising to give giants like Coolmore "a slapping" in the forthcoming Juddmonte International at York with another of his stars, Thundering Blue.

With the yearling sale season about to get going, Washbourn's delight was a reminder that ultimately, this game is all about the thrill of winning and when it happens, there are few better feelings.

Over the coming months, scores of prospective owners will go in search of the same high, scouring Europe for the type of talent that could see them emulating Washbourn in bouncing around a winner's enclosure full of the joys of racing.

Robert Bruce (Irad Ortiz): former Chilean star wins the Arlington Million

Robert Bruce provides timely boost for Fast Company

Saturday's Arlington Million may not have provided the sort of result the European raiders were hoping for but not everybody in this part of the world will have been disappointed to see Robert Bruce come home in front in Illinois.

A four-time scorer at the highest level in his native Chile, the win was a first Grade 1 success in the US for the colt and provided his sire, Fast Company, with a timely boost.

These are important times for the Kildangan Stud resident, whose other elite scorer is the 2016 Irish 1,000 Guineas heroine Jet Setting. That success preceded the son of Danehill Dancer's switch from Overbury Stud to Darley's Irish base and triggered a sharp upturn in interest from breeders.

Fast Company covered 64 mares in 2016, of which 36 were winners and only three were black type performers. Fast forward 12 months and, in the wake of Jet Setting's Classic glory, he was visited by 163 mares, among them 72 winners and 19 black type performers.

He stood for a career high of €9,000 this term and with that bolstered crop of 2017 heading to the sales in the months and years to come, Robert Bruce's win will have been cheered by those with Fast Company foals on the ground.

Advertise: will be ridden by Oisin Murphy again on Saturday

The show goes on for Whitsbury Manor Stud resident

The wait for a British-trained Phoenix Stakes winner has been a long one but when it finally came yesterday, a British stud was among the big winners.

In victory, Advertise became the first Group 1-winning son of Whitsbury Manor Stud's Showcasing, who has already been represented at the highest level by the filly Quiet Reflection.

A stallion son in waiting is significant though, as it displays the ability of Showcasing to build his own legacy. Having once again stood for a career high £35,000 in 2018, that is not to be sniffed at and it is not hard to imagine that fee jumping again next year.

With the China Horse Club having parted with £190,000 for a lifetime breeding right at the Goffs UK Goodwood Sale, as well as Showcasing having four yearlings catalogued at Arqana later this week, these are heady times for all involved.

He has a further 19 yearlings catalogued for the Goffs UK Premier Yearling Sale, the source of Advertise himself 12 months ago, and prospective owners will be taking another look in light of recent events.

Australian winner a great result for British breeder

There is surely no small breeder in Britain with only a single mare to his name in a stronger position than Tony Ashley, who is responsible for the wonderful Aga Khan-bred Sindiyma.

The Staffordshire-based Ashley, a relative newcomer to the game having turned his hand to breeding only a decade ago, bought Sindiyma from Goffs for €20,000 in 2013, a bargain in light of what we have seen from her offspring since. Ashley bred the now Group 3 winner Marie's Diamond from her, will offer that colt's sister at Book 2 of the Tattersalls October Yearling Sale and has her in foal to Free Eagle this year.

Tony Ashley, breeder of Marie's Diamond.

As if that was not enough, Ashley's weekend got off to a fine start as he will have woken on Saturday to discover another of Sindiyma's offspring, Sikandarabad, had won a A$100,000 handicap at Flemington in the colours of Yu Long Investments.

In an industry so dominated by the leading global operations, it is a thrill to see such a modest approach earning this type of success.

Another record for Galileo but wait for elite mark goes on

Another week, another remarkable landmark figure reached by Coolmore's incomparable champion Galileo. 

Victory for Sizzling in the Give Thanks Stakes at Cork on Saturday saw the progeny of Galileo win their 600th worldwide stakes race combined but that was not all. Sizzling also became his 328th winner of a European Pattern contest, moving Galileo ahead of his sire, Sadler's Wells, in that particular all-time list.

Sadler's Wells still holds an advantage over his brilliant son in at least one key table though, with Galileo's hunt for a record-equalling 73rd international Group or Grade 1 winner continuing after Platinum Warrior could manage only a fast-finishing fourth in Saturday's Secretariat Stakes.

This is far from a crisis for Galileo and there is no doubt he will not only match but comfortably eclipse his father's record in the fullness of time. However, it is a little surprising that it is taking as long as it is for Galileo to get over the line and is perhaps indicative of a slightly disappointing season, by his own astronomic standards.

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In an industry so dominated by the leading global operations, it is a thrill to see such a modest approach enjoying such success
E.W. Terms
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