Racing Post Trophy hero Elm Park sold to stand in France
Son of Phoenix Reach was an outstanding two-year-old
Elm Park, the impressive winner of the Racing Post Trophy in 2014, has been sold to start his stallion career at Haras du Saz near Nantes in France in a deal brokered by bloodstock agent Richard Venn.
The five-year-old son of Phoenix Reach will command a fee of €3,000 live foal and stand alongside Dragon Dancer, Soul City and Sri Putra.
Elm Park was trained by Andrew Balding, originally for his breeder Kingsclere Stud. He broke his maiden at Newbury on his second start before running out a three-length winner of the Listed Stonehenge Stakes at Salisbury, enticing Qatar Racing to come on board as joint-owner.
The horse then won the Royal Lodge Stakes and Racing Post Trophy carrying the silks of Qatar Racing, who bought him outright at the end of his juvenile season.
At three Elm Park found only the Classic winners Golden Horn and Jack Hobbs too good in the Dante Stakes, before finishing down the field in the Derby after failing to settle in the early stages and then regaining the winning thread with a comfortable success in the Listed Fortune Stakes dropped back down to a mile.
He signed off his career with a respectable fifth to Solow – beaten less than three lengths – in the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes at Ascot.
Balding said: “Elm Park was an exciting horse to train as he was always impressive in his homework. He had such a relaxed nature in his slower paces but when it came to pressing any buttons the response was electric.
“He was a very good two-year-old and it was unfortunate that he didn't have the opportunity to show how good he was as an older horse.
“If Elm Park’s progeny inherit his temperament and even half of his ability they will be in good standing. We will be supporting him with mares and look forward to seeing his progeny in the future.”
Elm Park's pedigree is replete with talented horses trained by Balding or father Ian at Kingsclere. He is out of the winning Dashing Blade mare Lady Brora, who has also produced the talented handicapper Brorocco.
The dam is a half-sister to the Grade 1-placed hurdler Tweedledrum, and is out of a daughter of Selkirk who in turn was out of a Mill Reef mare. Her third dam is Balding's Cambridgeshire winner Siliciana.
Reflecting on the joy that Elm Park brought Qatar Racing, the owner's manager David Redvers said: “Elm Park’s impressive victory in the Racing Post Trophy gave Sheikh Fahad and the Qatar Racing team a huge thrill. Elm Park was a top-class two-year-old and we look forward to supporting him and his progeny in the future.”
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