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Perfect start for Almanzor as first runner strikes at Chantilly

Faro De San Juan was a 160,000gns foal purchase

Christophe Soumillon celebrates after landing the Irish Champion Stakes abroad Almanzor
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Faro De San Juan made a winning debut in the Prix du Soleil de Bretagne over five and a half furlongs at Chantilly on Monday to give Almanzor the perfect start to his highly anticipated stud career.

Bred by Lynch-Bages Ltd, the colt is trained by Francis-Henri Graffard for owner Peter Katelanis and is the first foal out of Fixette, a daughter of Kodiac who finished runner-up in a brace of French Group 3s.

Fixette was sold while carrying Faro De San Juan in utero at the 2018 Tattersalls December Sale, where Blandford Bloodstock signed the ticket at 375,000gns. Fixette has since produced a filly by No Nay Never, now a yearling, and visited the same sire again last year.

Faro De San Juan, one of 89 juveniles in his sire's debut crop, also went through the Tattersalls sales ring when signed for by Haras d'Etreham and SF Bloodstock at 160,000gns as a foal.

Almanzor sees off Found to win the Irish Champion Stakes at Leopardstown

Almanzor was bred by Haras d'Etreham and bought by trainer Jean-Claude Rouget for €100,000 when offered at Arqana's August Sale in 2014. He was a Listed winner at two but proved an altogether more talented three-year-old as he rattled off a hat-trick of Group 1 victories.

He saw off the likes of Zarak and Talismanic in the Prix du Jockey Club before twice denying the mighty Found, first in the Irish Champion Stakes, with Minding in third and New Bay in fourth, and again in the Champion Stakes at Ascot.

He also won the Group 2 Prix Guillaume d'Ornano and the Group 3 Prix de Guiche among eight career successes. 

He returned to Haras d'Etreham to begin his stallion career alongside his own sire, Wootton Bassett, in 2018.

His first crop of yearlings earned some rave reviews at the sales, with the bunch averaging £92,180 - among which were colts out of Waldjagd and Glittering Tax who fetched 250,000gns and €280,000 from Mike Ryan and Mick Kinane respectively.

The yards of British trainers Clive Cox, William Haggas, Mark Johnston, Sir Mark Prescott, Kevin Ryan and Sir Michael Stoute all contain an Almanzor-sired two-year-old. He is standing the current season at a fee of €30,000.

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Almanzor was bred by Haras d'Etreham and bought by trainer Jean-Claude Rouget for ?100,000 when offered at Arqana's August Sale

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