Tis Marvellous looked like a colt with a big future when he beat Group 2 Queen Mary Stakes runner-up Al Johrah by two and half lengths in the Group 2 Prix Robert Papin at Maisons-Laffitte this afternoon.
Runner-up over six furlongs at Newbury on his debut just over three weeks ago, he then stormed home by eight lengths over the same trip at Windsor 11 days later. The Group 1 Prix Morny has been named as a potential target for the Clive Cox-trained colt, and he is already the subject of ante-post quotes for next year's Group 1 Commonwealth Cup at Ascot.
A first-crop son of Tweenhills Farm & Stud stallion Harbour Watch (by Acclamation), Tis Marvellous was bred by Crossfields Bloodstock Ltd and his first public appearance was when making 48,000gns in Newmarket as a foal. Cox secured him for 52,000gns at the Doncaster Premier Yearling Sale, and he races in the colours of Julie Deadman and Stephen Barrow.
The same owner/trainer team won the 2012 edition of the Group 2 Prix Robert Papin with Reckless Abandon, who went on to add the Group 1 Prix Morny and Group 1 Middle Park Stakes.
Tis Marvellous is the fourth foal and fourth winner out of Mythicism (by Oasis Dream) and, although 1974's classic and Champion Stakes-placed Group 2 Pretty Polly Stakes heroine Northern Gem (by Northern Dancer) appears in a remote branch of the family, it is possible that the colt could become the brightest star this family has produced for a long time.
The best of his siblings is the four-times sprint winner Mythmaker (by Major Cadeaux), his dam got her sole success over six furlongs at Redcar as a two-year-old, but his grandam, Romantic Myth (by Mind Games), won the Group 3 Queen Mary Stakes in 2000. Her ill-fated half-sister Romantic Liason (by Primo Dominie) won that same prestigious event two years later, and their 10 other successful siblings include the pattern-placed gelding Chapter Seven (by Excellent Art).
The third dam of Tis Marvellous is the unplaced My First Romance (by Danehill), whose siblings include the unraced dam of the pattern-placed prolific New Zealand stakes winner Sacha (by Keeper), and his fourth dam is Front Line Romance (by Caerleon).
She won just once, but earned her blacktype when runner-up in the Group 3 Killavullan Stakes at Leopardstown and when third in the Listed Lupe Stakes at Goodwood, and she is a full-sister to two talented and prolific horses whose distance preferences were quite different from those of their speedier relations.
Courtline Jester was a star in Singapore and Malaysia, and his string of big wins featured two editions of the Singapore Derby. Knight Line Dancer was a stakes-placed winner in England, but he got his best results in Italy where he won the Group 3 Premio Ambrosiano, the Group 3 Premio Carlo Porta, the Group 3 Premio Ellington, and the Group 3 Premio Federico Tesio.
Their half-sister Bayline Beauty (by Soviet Star) has also done her part for the family as she is the dam of the seven-furlong New Zealand Group 3 scorer The Filly (by Ishiguru), a 10-times winner whose blacktype placings include third in a Group 2 sprint at Te Rapa.
These are the highlights of the first five generations of the pedigree – Northern Gem's grandam Claudette (by Chanteur) is the seventh dam of Tis Marvellous - and although there is some middle-distance stamina on the page, this afternoon's big winner represents a speed branch of the line.
Tis Marvellous looked very good at Maisons-Laffitte, he could become a Group 1 winner by the end of the year, and he has the potential to become a leading three-year-old sprinter and Commonwealth Cup contender in 2017.