Classic-placed Group 1 sprint star Green Desert forged one of the two most powerful branches of the Danzig (by Northern Dancer) line and there are now several subdivisions emerging in Europe thanks to the exploits of Cape Cross, Invincible Spirit and Oasis Dream, each of whom has stallion sons of note. Right now it is the Invincible Spirit branch that appears strongest, but it is early days yet.
The early Oasis Dream stallions include Showcasing, a Group 2 Gimcrack Stakes winner and Group 1 Middle Park Stakes third whose three-year-old campaign consisted of an excellent second to Prime Defender in the Group 2 Duke of York Stakes and then two crushing defeats.
He is a half-brother to blacktype sire Camacho (by Danehill), his stakes-winning dam is out of Group 1 Cheveley Park Stakes winner Prophecy (by Warning), and his combination of pedigree, two-year-old talent plus early three-year-old sprint form all but guaranteed he would be a popular addition to the stallion ranks.
He is a member of the team at Whitsbury Manor Stud, his 25 stakes winners feature dual Group 1 sprint star Quiet Reflection and multiple Group 1-placed Group 2 Duke of York Stakes winner Tasleet.
He has also achieved something very important with regard to his potential to take high rank in the general sires' championship title race – he has proved his ability to get milers. Projected and Prize Exhibit – the latter a Grade 1-placed filly who is a proven sprinter-miler – are Grade 2 scorers over the trip in the USA.
If Showcasing can sire good milers then he can get classic horses, and if he can get good milers then, with the right mares, he can get some high-class 10-furlong horses too.
Heavy ground can exaggerate superiority, but it was hard not to be impressed with the way that his son Dice Roll won the Group 3 Prix Djebel over seven furlongs at Deauville on Monday, and it would be no surprise to see colt make the frame in the Group 1 Poule d'Essai des Poulains (French 2000 Guineas) – or even win it – and go on to become one of the leading milers of the year.
Dice Roll was bred by Gestut Zur Kuste Ag, he is a €130,000 graduate of the Arqana Deauville October Yearling Sale, and he is trained by Fabrice Chappet.
He made a short-head winning debut over six furlongs on good ground at Maisons-Laffitte in mid-July and rounded off his juvenile campaign with a one-and-three-quarter-length victory in a valuable mile sales race at Chantilly. His only defeat in five starts came when fourth of seven in a seven-furlong listed contest at Deauville a month after his debut.
The fourth living foal of 12-furlong scorer Schlague (by Pulpit), he is a half-brother to dual sprint winner Falcon (by Falco) and a grandson of Si Je N'Avais Plus (by Kaldoun), who earned her blacktype over seven and nine furlongs.
That mare's siblings include smart sprinter-miler River Of Light (by Irish River) and also two fillies who made their names at stud.
Battani (by Top Ville), who won once, is the dam of Grade 1-winning hurdler Me Voici (by Saint Des Saints) and of blacktype chase scorer St Devote (by Saint Des Saints) and she is the grandam of Grade 1-winning hurdler L'Unique (by Reefscape) and of Grade 2 hurdles scorer Baan Rim Pa (by Dyhim Diamond).
Dibenoise (by Kendor), on the other hand, was unraced but her string of successful offspring features Group 1 Criterium de Saint-Cloud and Group 2 Derrinstown Stud Derby Trial winner Recital (by Montjeu), Group 1 Prix Ganay star Corre Caminos (by Montjeu), and Group 2-winning miler Racinger (by Spectrum).
The third dam of Dice Roll is, therefore, the Group 3 Prix des Reservoirs winner and Group 1 Poule d'Essai des Pouliches (French 1000 Guineas) runner-up Boreale (by Bellypha), a daughter of blacktype miler Princesse Tora (by Prince Taj) and so a half-sister to listed scorer Tory Conquest (by Rainbow Quest) and to Group 1 Prix Morny third Princesse Lee (by Habitat).
The latter is also notable as being the dam of Princesse Lida (by Nijinsky), France's champion two-year-old filly of 1979 when she won both the Group 1 Prix Morny and Group 1 Prix de la Salamandre. She was rated 119 by Timeform that season and went on to take third in the Group 1 Poule d'Essai des Pouliches.
It is true that, with the exception of Baan Rim Pa, the middle-distance and staying horses among those noted above are by stallions with whom you would associate such aptitude, but their presence in the family offers hope that Schlague could be "the right mare" who could get a 10-furlong horse by Showcasing. And, if so, then this colt could also be a leading contender for the Group 1 Prix du Jockey Club (French Derby).