Waajib was not a likely candidate to leave a lasting legacy. A Group 2-winning miler among a small number of stakes winning offspring by the regally-related juvenile star Try My Best (by Northern Dancer), his own small number of blacktype-winning progeny featured one true standout, Royal Applause.
A half-brother to the Group 1 Nunthorpe Stakes heroine Lyric Fantasy (by Tate Gallery), who was fondly known by many as 'The Pocket Rocket', his unbeaten juvenile season culminated with a four-length score in the Group 1 Middle Park Stakes, and the final of his stakes wins at the age of four came in the Group 1 Sprint Cup at Haydock.
Royal Applause went on to have a highly successful career at The Royal Studs, establishing a reputation as being a source of precocious horses, high-class sprinters and also some who have been effective at a mile and beyond. Acclamation takes high rank among his 47 stakes winners, even though the leading sprinter didn't actually win at the highest level, and it is he who is ensuring that this male line continues to make an impact.
Acclamation stands at Rathbarry Stud, he is currently in the top 10 in the sires' championship title race for the combined Ireland and UK region, his 2016 European runners feature recent pattern scorers Mehmas, Attendu and Queen Catrine, and he is also having a tremendous year with his stallion sons.
Group 1 Middle Park Stakes winner and Yeomanstown Stud stallion Dark Angel heads his roll of honour. The grey is well-established as being one of the leading sires in Europe, his recent pattern stars include the siblings Mecca's Angel and Markaz, and, by Saturday night, had only Galileo, Sea The Stars and Dubawi ahead of him in the aforementioned stallion rankings.
Dual Group 1 King's Stand Stakes winner Equiano, who stands at Newsells Park Stud, is at an earlier stage of his career, but his progeny include recent Group 2 Railway Stakes winner Medicine Jack and the Group/Grade 3 scorers Baciami Piccola and The Tin Man.
This afternoon, at Maisons-Laffitte in France, Harbour Watch became the latest son of Acclamation to sire a pattern winner when the Clive Cox-trained Tis Marvellous (dam by Oasis Dream), who was an eight-length scorer at Windsor on his previous outing, impressed in the Group 2 Prix Robert Papin over five and a half furlongs. The horse he beat by two and a half lengths was last month's Group 2 Queen Mary Stakes runner-up Al Johrah, who was four lengths clear of the third, and the colt may be able to do what his sire didn't get the chance to try, to win at the highest level.
Harbour Watch stands at Tweenhills Farm & Stud in Gloucestershire, and although his racing career took place in the span of just a few weeks in June and July of his juvenile season, he won his three starts by aggregate of 10 and a half lengths and earned a Timeform rating of 121p for his victory in the Group 2 Richmond Stakes. That made him that organisation's juvenile champion of 2011.
He is a half-brother to the dual South African Group 1 star Europa Point (by Rock Of Gibraltar), and his dam, Gorband (by Woodman), is a half-sister to the talented Kabool (by Groom Dancer). He won the Group 2 Prix Guillaume d'Ornano and Group 2 Prix du Rond-Point, he was third in the Group 1 Champion Stakes at Newmarket, and his winning dam, Sheroog (by Shareef Dancer), is a full-sister to Colorado Dancer.
That Group 2 Prix de Pomone winner and Group 1 Prix Vermeille third is, of course, the mare who gave us the Timeform 140-rated superstar Dubai Millennium (by Seeking The Gold) – sire of Group 1 star and outstanding stallion Dubawi – and so Harbour Watch is a member of the famous Fall Aspen (by Pretense) family.
That Grade 1 Matron Stakes heroine is his third dam and her progeny also feature Group 1 July Cup winner Hamas (by Danzig), US juvenile champion and classic hero Timber Country (by Woodman), Grade 1 Gamely Stakes winner Northern Aspen (by Northern Dancer), Group 1 Grand Prix de Paris scorer and outstanding South African sire Fort Wood (by Sadler's Wells), Group 2 winning-sprinter and successful sire Bianconi (by Danzig), and Elle Seule (by Exclusive Native), the Group 2 Prix d'Astarte heroine who has been a hugely influential broodmare.
Her sprint-champion son Elnadim (by Danzig) won the Group 1 July Cup, Mehthaaf (by Nureyev) won the Group 1 Irish 1000 Guineas, and those who descend from Elle Seule include the Group 1 stars Occupandiste (by Kaldoun), Mondialiste (by Galileo) and Intello (by Galileo).
There are many other stakes and pattern winners who descend from Fall Aspen, including Group 1 scorer Medaaly (by Highest Honor), Group 1-placed Group 2-winning miler Charnwood Forest (by Warning), classic-placed Group 2 heroine Impressionnante (by Danehill), and this year's Group 1 2000 Guineas third Ribchester (by Iffraaj), and many of the best colts in the family went on to sire stakes and pattern winners at stud.
With family connections like these, it is no surprise that Harbour Watch yearlings made up to 110,000gns and €130,000 in 2015, that his foals have made up to €120,000, and that his growing number of early first-crop winners includes an impressive Group 2 scorer who could be on his way to the top.
It will be interesting to see how far his best progeny stay, but there is every reason to hope that Harbour Watch could become a valuable source of two-year-olds, of sprinters and even some high-class milers.
HARBOUR WATCH (IRE) – b.2009 – Acclamation – Gorband, 3 wins inc Richmond Stakes (Gr2). Sire in England & Australia. First foals in 2014. 1 SW viz. TIS MARVELLOUS (Gr2), etc.
Irish National Stud stallion Dragon Pulse became the third freshman sire of 2016 to get his first stakes winner when the Richard Hannon-trained Legendary Lunch (dam by Hansel) held on by a nose to take the Listed Investec Woodcote Stakes over six furlongs at Epsom today.
That colt, who made £78,000 in Doncaster as a yearling, was bred by G Johnston King. He made a winning debut over five furlongs at Windsor in late April, was 1/5 favourite when runner-up in a novice event over that course and distance three weeks later, and he is now a potential Royal Ascot contender.
Dragon Pulse's early runners also include the Newmarket debut winner Fiery Character (dam by Aptitude) and Maisons-Laffitte five-furlong scorer Decapulse (dam by Singspiel), and he has several others who have been placed. This represents a promising start.
Dragon Pulse is a son of the sprint champion Kyllachy (by Pivotal) and he made his racecourse debut in early June of his two-year-old season, failing by just a head to take a six-furlong Curragh maiden. He won on soft ground at Leopardstown the following month, beat Parish Hall by nearly two lengths in the Group 2 Futurity Stakes over seven at the Curragh, and was then a half-length runner-up to Power in the Group 1 National Stakes, his final outing of the year.
He moved to France for his three-year-old campaign and began well with a short-head defeat of the previously unbeaten dual Group 1 star Dabirsim in the Group 3 Prix de Fontainebleau over a mile at Longchamp. The pair met again in the Group 1 Poule d'Essai des Poulains (French 2000 Guineas), but both disappointed, coming home unplaced behind the shock winner Lucayan. It was a blanket finish where 10 horses were within three lengths of each other at the line.
He finished about the same distance behind Lucayan in the Group 1 St James's Palace Stakes at Royal Ascot as he did in that classic, but the pair were unplaced behind Most Improved. Dragon Pulse did not run again.
His first two crops, both conceived at an advertised fee of €6,000, have been popular at the sales, with yearlings making up to 100,000gns in Newmarket and up to €120,000 at Goffs in 2015, and juveniles headed by a filly who fetched 150,000gns at the Tattersalls Craven Breeze-Up Sale in April. He had a top price of €95,000 among his foals in 2014 and a €50,000 one last year.
Dragon Pulse is by the sire of the Group 1 sprint stars Krypton Factor, Sole Power and Twilight Son – two geldings and a colt who is still in training – and he is one of Kyllachy's first stallion sons. He is the first foal out of the pattern-placed mare Poetical (by Croco Rouge) and his grandam has two Group 1 Middle Park Stakes winners among her immediate relations.
She, Abyat (by Shadeed), did not race, she is the third dam of the Listed Roses Stakes winner and Group 2 Norfolk Stakes runner-up Mind Of Madness (by Azamour), and she is out of the Listed Doncaster Stakes runner-up Futuh (by Diesis). That makes her a half-sister to Hayil (by Dayjur) who won the Middle Park Stakes in 1997.
His six blacktype-placed siblings include Ghurra (by War Chant), who was Grade 3-placed in the USA, and she is the dam of last year's juvenile star Shalaa (by Invincible Spirit) whose Group 1 win at Newmarket came after a Group 1 Prix Morny victory at Deauville.
The John Gosden-trained colt was seen as the outstanding candidate for the upcoming Group 1 Commonwealth Cup until a pelvic injury ruled him out of the first half of the season. In addition to his Group 1 double in 2015, the Mogeely Stud-bred bay won the Group 2 July Stakes and the Group 2 Richmond Stakes. Hopefully he will make it back to the track.
Futuh is out of the Grade 1 Frizette Stakes third Hardship (by Drone) and related to plenty of blacktype horses, but although some of the better ones among them are only distantly related, the standout individual in their midst is also the one who was successful at stud.
Wild Rush (by Wild Again) won the Grade 1 Carter Handicap and the Grade 1 Metropolitan Handicap, he is out of Futuh's stakes-winning half-sister Rose Park (by Plugged Nickle), and his progeny feature the multiple Group/Grade 1 winners Transcend, Stellar Jayne and Hollywood Story.
Dragon Pulse's relationship to Wild Rush is also distant, but when there is a successful stallion within the first three or four generations of a pedigree then it offers promise that the younger individual could also do well in that role.
It is far too early to have any idea of the long-term prospects of Dragon Pulse, but he is off to a good start and is among the first few members of his freshman class to get that important first stakes winner to his name.
DRAGON PULSE (IRE) – ch.2009 – Kyllachy – Poetical, 3 wins inc Futurity Stakes (Gr2), Prix de Fontainebleau (Gr3), 2nd National Stakes (Gr1). Sire in Ireland. First foals in 2014. 1 SW viz. LEGENDARY LUNCH, etc.
One of the things that we look for when assessing the future potential of any stallion is the presence or absence of successful sires in the distaff side of his family. Having no such relations does not mean that he will disappoint, and having good sires in the family is no guarantee of success, but if his family has previously thrown up at least one good stallion then it offers encouragement for the new recruit.
As a precocious and Group 1-winning juvenile who went on to take a classic at three, and who represents one of the two major branches of the powerful Danzig (by Northern Dancer) sire line, Power had plenty going for him when he retired to Coolmore Stud. The fact that his dam's classic-winning half-brother Footstepsinthesand (by Giant's Causeway) is a prolific blacktype sire with five Group/Grade 1 winners to his name adds gloss to his profile.
Power's early progeny have proved popular in the sales ring, his first runners have already yielded four winners, and one of those is dual scorer Peace Envoy (dam by Dansili), the colt who won the Listed Coolmore War Command Rochestown Stakes over six furlongs at Naas on Sunday.
Biz Power (dam by Tobougg), whose pattern-winning siblings include Group 1 scorer Biz The Nurse (by Oratorio), made a winning debut in Italy, the tragically ill-fated filly Wheneverwecan gave him a first British scorer when taking a five furlong contest at Musselburgh in early May, and the Ralph Beckett-trained gelding Pleaseletmewin (dam by Indian Ridge) won over six furlongs at Wolverhampton today.
It is hardly a surprise that Power made a quick start as he was one of the most precocious juveniles of his year. He made a winning debut over six furlongs at the Curragh in early May, added the Listed Marble Hill Stakes over five at the same venue three weeks later, and then completed a hat-trick with a narrow success in the Group 2 Coventry Stakes at Royal Ascot.
He lost his undefeated record when beaten a neck by La Collina in the Group 1 Phoenix Stakes two months later, but he bounced back to deny Dragon Pulse of victory the Group 1 National Stakes at the Curragh, before completing his first season with a half-length loss to Parish Hall in the Group 1 Dewhurst Stakes.
His three-year-old season was less consistent and it was restricted to just three starts. He beat only one home in the Group 1 2000 Guineas at Newmarket, which was won by his stable companion Camelot, then took a less competitive edition of the Group 1 Irish 2000 Guineas at the Curragh, in which he beat Foxtrot Romeo by a length. He finished well-beaten when favourite for the Group 1 St James's Palace Stakes at Royal Ascot the following month, having been badly hampered over a quarter-mile from home, which was a contributing factor to the extent of his defeat, and although he was available at around 10/1 for the Group 1 July Cup shortly afterwards, he did not run again.
Power is one of more than 100 individual stakes winners sired by Banstead Manor Stud's sprint star Oasis Dream (by Green Desert) and the mixed success rate of that horse's other sons is discussed in the review of Showcasing, a rising star in the stallion ranks.
His dam Frappe (by Inchinor) is also responsible for the Grade 1 E P Taylor Stakes winner and Group 1 Irish Oaks third Curvy (by Galileo), for Group 2 Ribblesdale Stakes scorer Thakafaat (by Unfuwain), and for Applauded (by Royal Applause), the winning dam of listed scorers Mirage (by Oasis Dream) and Amnesia (by Invincible Spirit), both of whom are fillies.
In addition to being a half-sister to the afore mentioned Group 1 2000 Guineas winner and successful sire Footstepsinthesand, Frappe is also a half-sister to the Group 2-placed stakes winner Belle D'Or (by Medaglia d'Oro) and to Group 1 Phoenix Stakes scorer Pedro The Great (by Henrythenavigator). That former Aidan O'Brien trainee stands at Haras De La Haie Neuve, in France, and his first progeny are yearlings.
Footstepsinthesand, who stands at Coolmore Stud, has been represented by 46 stakes winners, including Group 1 Matron Stakes heroine Chachamaidee (dam by Danehill), classic-placed mile Group 1 scorer Shamalgan (dam by Unfuwain), New Zealand Group 1 winner Steinbeck/Pure Champion (dam by Danehill), and two who have won at the highest level in South America. His 10 Group/Grade 2 scorers include the prolific Italian miler Kaspersky (dam by Grand Lodge), who added the Group 3 Premio Carlo Vittadini to his tally on Sunday, and the Gary Mandella-trained mare Living The Life (dam by Machiavellian), who won the Grade 3 All American Stakes over a mile on Tapeta at Golden Gate Fields on Monday.
Glatisant (by Rainbow Quest), the grandam of Power, won the Group 3 Prestige Stakes as a juvenile, she is out of the Group 2 Nassau Stakes heroine Dancing Rocks (by Green Dancer), and her siblings include three mares from whom pattern winners descend.
Her full-sister Rainbow Goddess is the dam of Mahler (by Galileo), the Group 3 Queen's Vase winner who was runner-up in the Group 1 St Leger at Doncaster, third in the Group 1 Melbourne Cup at Flemington, and is now a successful member of the Coolmore National Hunt stallion team, standing at Beeches Stud.
Pippas Song (by Reference Point) is the grandam of Lady Lara (by Excellent Art), who won a seven furlong listed contest at Newbury before going on to Grade 2 and Grade 3 success as a miler in Florida. She is now five years old, she is trained by Bill Mott, and she chased home the prolific Grade 1 star Tepin in a Grade 3 contest at Tampa Bay Downs in February.
The third of the notable sisters is Council Rock (by General Assembly), the non-winning mare who gave us the juvenile filly champion Superstar Leo (by College Chapel). A Group 2 Flying Childers Stakes winner in 2000, she was runner-up in the Group 1 Prix de l'Abbaye de Longchamp and in the Group 1 Phoenix Stakes, and she is the dam of the dual pattern-winning sprinter Enticing (by Pivotal).
Council Rock is also notable as being the grandam of the Australian Group 1 scorer December Draw (by Medecis) and of Alexander Pope (by Danehill Dancer), the Group 3 Gallinule Stakes winner who was third behind Nathaniel in the Group 2 King Edward VII Stakes at Ascot. He was renamed Packing Tycoon when he went to Hong Kong, but did not achieve anything of note there or in New Zealand.
Power's first yearlings made up to 180,000gns in Newmarket, his breeze-up juveniles include a filly who made 100,000gns at the same venue, and it is his €125,000 Arqana Deauville October Yearling Sale graduate Peace Envoy who has given him a first stakes winner. This is a promising start.
POWER (GB) – b.2009 – Oasis Dream – Frappe, 5 wins inc Irish 2000 Guineas (Gr1), National Stakes (Gr1), Coventry Stakes (Gr2), Marble Hill Stakes (L), 2nd Dewhurst Stakes (Gr1), Phoenix Stakes (Gr1). Sire in Ireland. First foals in 2014. 1 SW viz. PEACE ENVOY, etc.
Freshman sires who make a quick start with their first runners, and who feature among those in the race to get the first juvenile stakes winners of the year, tend to be those who were themselves precocious or leading two-year-olds.
In 2016, the one who secured the honour of being the first with a blacktype scorer to his name is a stallion who was only stakes-placed at two and three, hitting his peak as a four-year-old.
He won only two of his six starts as a juvenile, picking up his blacktype when runner-up in the Listed Ripon Champion 2yo Trophy. He failed to win in five starts at three, although was runner-up in the Listed Wentworth Stakes at Doncaster and third in the Listed Rous Stakes at Ascot.
As a four-year-old, however, the Richard Fahey-trained bay won the Listed Abernant Stakes and Group 3 Palace House Stakes before an impressive five-length score in the Group 1 July Cup, on heavy ground, and he later beat all but Wizz Kid in the Group 1 Prix de l'Abbaye de Longchamp, beaten by a neck.
A Group 1-winning son of leading sire Invincible Spirit (by Green Desert), who also got his Group 1 win as an older horse, Mayson retired to Cheveley Park Stud. He is by the sire of classic stallion Lawman and of promising speed sires I Am Invincible and Zebedee, and his handful of early runners features Global Applause, impressive winner of the Listed BetVictor Million Pound Goal National Stakes at Sandown.
That Ed Dunlop-trained colt, who made 60,000gns as a foal and then 78,000gns at the Tattersalls October Yearling Sale, was bred by Robin and Scarlett Knipe and he is the third foal out of Crown (by Royal Applause), a sprint-winning half-sister to the pattern-placed Cochabamba (by Hurricane Run). He is clearly held in high regard as his entries include the Group 2 GAIN Railway Stakes, the Group 1 Keeneland Phoenix Stakes and the Group 1 Goffs Vincent O'Brien National Stakes.
That dual winner is joined on Mayson's scoresheet by Spin Doctor who made a winning debut over five furlongs at Nottingham in early May and then finished third in a conditions event over the same trip at Beverley. She is owned and bred by Cheveley Park Stud, she is trained by Richard Fahey, she is a half-sister to five blacktype scorers out of Doctor's Glory (by Elmaamul), and she also holds a blacktype entry.
Mayson is out of Mayleaf (by Pivotal), an unraced half-sister to Group 3 Molecomb Stakes third Folio (by Perugino) and to Bathwick Bear (by Kodiac), the horse who beat him in that juvenile listed contest at Ripon. Their dam, Bayleaf (by Efisio), was a stakes-placed juvenile sprint winner and her full-sister Baize was third in the Group 3 Molecomb Stakes before going on to a notable career at stud.
Her daughter Singhalese (by Singspiel) won the Grade 1 Del Mar Oaks, went to stud in Japan, and is the dam of three blacktype winners there, most notably Group 1 Yushun Himba (Japanese Oaks) heroine and Group 1 Oka Sho (Japanese 1000 Guineas) runner-up Sinhalite (by Deep Impact).
Singhalese's full-brother Kid Edward was Grade 2-placed in the USA, her half-brother Docofthebay (by Docksider) won a listed contest, and her half-sister Farhad (by Red Ransom) is the dam of the Group 1-placed dual Italian listed scorer Branderburgo (by High Chaparral).
Bayonne (by Bay Express), who is the third dam of Mayson, won twice as a three-year-old and was a full-sister to the speedy dual stakes-placed filly Bay Bay. What also makes Bay Bay significant is that her descendants include the pattern-placed juvenile sprint stakes winner Strut (by Danehill Dancer) and also Mince (by Medicean), the top three-year-old filly sprinter of 2012, winner of Ascot's Group 3 Bengough Stakes and of three listed contests, all over six furlongs.
This family has a long-established record of producing blacktype horses, although with the exception of Singhalese and her offspring, it looks rather light for a stallion prospect. That made Mayson something of an unknown quantity when he went to stud, but now that he has that first stakes winner to his name, he may be on his way to becoming another notably successful stallion son for his sire.
MAYSON (GB) – b.2008 – Invincible Spirit – Mayleaf, 5 wins inc July Cup (Gr1), Palace House Stakes (Gr3), Abernant Stakes (L), 2nd Prix de l'Abbaye de Longchamp (Gr1), Wentworth Stakes (L), Ripon Champion 2yo Trophy (L), 3rd Cammidge Trophy (L), Rous Stakes (L). Sire in England. First foals in 2014. 1 SW viz. GLOBAL APPLAUSE, etc.