BEING part of the thoroughbred industry can lead you on some quite amazing journeys and one of the most memorable episodes of my career began just before the 1992 Inglis Easter Yearling Sale when I was asked to help Sheikh Rashid Al Nahayan on his first visit to a thoroughbred auction in this country. I spoke to Sheikh Rashid, a member of the ruling family of Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates, and then set about selecting a short list of youngsters for him to inspect.
One of those on my list was a beautiful chestnut filly by Golden Slipper winner Marscay and from the Gr.3 winner and dual Oaks-placed Sir Tristram mare Eau d’Etoile. From the draft of Jim Fleming’s Tyreel Stud, she was a big, scopey filly with two unusual “horns” on her forehead and knees that were less than perfect, a fault I was prepared to forgive, as the rest of her physique was so appealing. She was also bred on a cross that had first come to my notice with a couple of successful winners in the US, that of Sir Ivor/Star Kingdom (and the reverse), which had subsequently met with some success locally. This mating produced line breeding to Hyperion, his dam Selene and her sire Chaucer (and his dam Canterbury Pilgrim) As well as being a 5mx5m RF to Canterbury Pilgrim, Star Kingdom also has that mare as his seventh dam.
The Marscay yearling’s older three-quarter brother Kenny’s Best Pal (Bletchingly), also by a son of Biscay (Star Kingdom (IRE)), would win the Australian Guineas-Gr.1 in February 1993 but the catalogue showed he was already stakes placed on debut at two and Eau d’Etoile had already produced the Black Type placegetter Temple Fire to a mating with Bletchingly. She later produced a third Gr.1 winner in Filante (Star Way) and these days Eau d’Etoile’s catalogue page is full of black type performers; ditto Bint Marscay. Filante is another line bred to Selene and his seven wins would include two at Gr.1, the Epsom and the Yalumba, and many Gr.1 placings.
Luckily Sheikh Rashid also liked the filly and I was able to buy her at the Newmarket auction for him for just $100,000. I recommended she be sent to Lee Freedman’s Sydney stables, then under the care of his brother Anthony, after she was broken in and had a spell at Muskoka Farm. Sheikh Rashid named her Bint Marscay (daughter of Marscay) and named another of his buys at that sale I Love Sydney, that Century colt also becoming a Group winner.
Bint Marscay would repay us all in spades, winning four races and $1.5m including the 1993 Golden Slipper-Gr.1 (in 1:08.88 by 3.25 lengths), Magic Night Stakes-Gr.2 and Listed Kindergarten Stakes (on debut) at two. She had bone chips taken from a knee after her juvenile career and came back to score a sensational win in the Chirnside Stakes-Gr.2 at Caulfield and place second in a Robins Kitchen Cup-Gr.2 and third in Doomben 10,000-Gr.1 and Silver Shadow-Gr.2 and earn more than $1.5m in a 10-start career cut short by an internal bleed.
Bint Marscay, who had just four foals, died in January 2019, aged 28 but her Gr.1 placed daughter Mannington (Danehill (USA)) and Gr.1-winning daughter Bollinger (Dehere (USA)) have both founded high class families. She was sold to Vinery’s Tom Simon (in foal to Scenic (IRE)) when Sheikh Rashid dispersed his Australian interests and her first foal, Beam, was unraced but was a good producer, leaving eight winners. Mannington, who placed in a VRC Newmarket-Gr.1 and a Blue Diamond-Gr.1, was her second foal and she is the dam of VRC Derby-Gr.1 winner and sire Benicio (More Than Ready (USA)) and Gr.2 winner Romneya (Red Ransom (USA) among her seven winners.
Bint Marscay’s third foal was the gelded Sheraton (Woodman (USA)), winner of a Blue Diamond Preview-Gr.3. She foaled the Coolmore Classic-Gr.1 winner Bollinger in 1999 and she is the dam of Gr.2 winners Villermont (All Too Hard) and Friesan Fire (USA) (A.P. Indy), the latter bred during Bollinger’s time at stud in America. Bint Marscay never had another foal despite being sent to the US where every effort was made to get her breeding again. She was sent to the Old Friends thoroughbred retirement home in 2013, becoming a favoured resident there until her death in early 2019.
Mannington (1997-2017) foaled Benicio for Vinery in 2002 and the filly Rheema (Fusaichi Pegasus (USA) in 2004 (dam of Gr.2 winner Always Allison), before moving to the Darley broodmare band where she foaled the Gr.2 winner Romneya (Red Ransom (USA) in 2005 before being exported to the US on December that year. She left the Kingmambo fillies Rose Trail (USA) and Piano Show (USA) and the Shamardal filly Mondial (IRE) before being imported from Ireland in foal to Shamardal (USA) in December 2013, foaling Catesby in 2014 and then Roheryn (Lonhro) in 2015. She died in May 2017.
Piano Show was imported in 2011 for Godolphin and left three fillies, Ivories (Lonhro), Show Tunes (Lonhro) and Lisitsa (Medaglia d’Oro (USA)) for Darley before her death in 2016. Mondial foaled The Globe (filly by Frosted (USA)) in 2018 and a Fastnet Rock filly who died in 2019 and was covered by Pierro this season.
Rose Trail remained in the northern hemisphere, foaling the French Listed winner and Group placed Rosental (Pivotal) in 2012 and her Gr.3-winning sister Rosa Imperial in 2013 and the Cape Cross (IRE) filly Ribbons and Roses in 2015. She was then sent to Darley Japan and foaled the New Approach colt Leading Edge in 2015 and returned to the UK to foal the Admire Moon (JPN) filly Evening Bloom (GB) in 2016.
Rose Trail’s daughter Rosental was imported in foal to champion Frankel (GB) (Galileo (IRE)-Kind by Danehill (USA)) by Bruce Neill (Cressfield, Scone) in 2018 and foaled a bay filly on July 31, 2018. That youngster, the first foal of her dam, is Lot 169 in this year’s superb Inglis Australian Easter Yearling Sale catalogue. Could she be the 2021 Golden Slipper winner 28 years after her fourth dam Bint Marscay won Australia’s richest race for two year-olds?
She certainly has the pedigree to do it, carrying a 3fx4f cross of nine-times champion sire Danehill, unusually via two daughters, and a 3×4,5 inbreeding to the three-quarter brothers Sadler’s Wells and Nureyev (GalileoxPolar Falcon, Miesque), as well as a 5mx4m cross of Mr. Prospector via sons Miswaki and Kingmambo. Her broodmare sire Pivotal (Polar Falcon-Fearless Revival by Cozzene) won four of his six starts including the Nunthorpe-Gr.1 (5f) and King’s Stand Stakes-Gr.2 (5f) and did well at stud.
He is a very good sire of broodmares.
His daughters have left 105 stakes winners and their 22 Gr.1 winners include two by Frankel and six by Galileo, a powerful cross indeed.
Rosental’s unraced dam, Rose Trail, is by Kingmambo, one of the best sons of champion sire Mr. Prospector and his dam is champion mare Miesque (Nureyev). He lived up to his pedigree too, winning the French 2000 Guineas-Gr.1, St James’s Palace Stakes-Gr.1 and Prix du Moulin-Gr.1 before a stellar stud career. Third dam Mannington won the Blue Diamond Prelude-Gr.3 and the Listed Talindert Stakes and was twice Gr.1 placed in the Newmarket and Blue Diamond.
Rosental’s Frankel daughter is among nine by the British based sire in the Easter Sale (six fillies, three colts). He was unbeaten in 14 starts from 7f-10f (10 Gr.1) and was European Champion at two, three and four and rated the best horse in the world in 2011, 2012. His Timeform of 147 is the highest ever awarded. His sire Galileo (Sadler’s Wells), a champion on the track and now at stud is the reigning champion sire of Europe and Frankel’s stakes-winning dam Kind, also dam of Gr.1 winner Noble Mission, is by champion sire Danehill. Frankel is 3mx4m Northern Dancer and has that horse’s dam Natalma 4mx5m,5f as well as Buckpasser 5fx5f.
Frankel has already had considerable success with his stock in Australia with Miss Fabulous and Finche and there will be even more interest in Lot 169 after the win of the Chris Waller-trained Hungry Heart in the Sweet Embrace Stakes-Gr.2 on February 29. This 50th stakes winner by the sire is bred on the same cross as Lot 169. The $300,000 yearling buy, who was second at Flemington on debut on January 11, races for her breeder Yulong Investments who purchased the dam Harlech, also by Pivotal, from the Godolphin draft at Tattersalls for 60,000 guineas in 2016 and had her covered by Frankel and shipped to Australia early the following year. Harlech’s Snitzel colt (Lot 482) is in the Yulong draft for the Easter sale.
The second, third, fourth and fifth dams are all stakes winners, Zooraa (Azamour), Beraysim (Lion Cavern), Silk Braid (Danzig) and Ribbon (His Majesty) and this is the family of Risen Star.
These Frankel yearlings are not the only ones to reflect the growing international nature of the Easter Sale as the catalogue also features four yearlings by Japan’s now-deceased champion sire Deep Impact, two by star US sire Into Mischief, one by US success story Kitten’s Joy and three by a Champion First Season Sire of Japan Lord Kanaloa (a grandson of Kingmambo) whose juvenile son Tagaloa (ex Vasilissa by Heart’s Cry) won the Blue Diamond Stakes-Gr.1 in February and will eventually stand for Yulong in Victoria. There are also two yearlings by champion French sire of juveniles Siyouni (Pivotal), who had the Todman Stakes-Gr.2 winner Aylmerton in 2018 and now has the smart juvenile See You Soon as a Golden Slipper contender.
Of course they are backed up by a big contingent of shuttle sires and our own NZ and Australian based sire champions to make the 514-strong catalogue desired reading for anyone wanting the best pedigrees available. The Easter Sale is at Riverside Stables, Warwick Farm on April 7 and 8.
Who knows, your Bint Marscay moment could be just around the corner.