Telemon Stud’s owners Dan and Rae Fletcher have experienced the thrill of Magic Millions success from both sides of the fence. In partnership they bred and sold the filly that would win the 2018 Magic Millions 2YO Classic as Sunlight, with Rae joining the all-female ownership group. Just four years on and the Fletcher’s will head to the Gold Coast with a quality draft of 14 yearlings, the first occasion Telemon will have sold at the Magic Millions flagship sale.
Dan and Rae purchased Telemon Stud in 2016 and took over management in 2018. As Dan explains the beautifully appointed farm at Innisplain has gone through a few name changes in its history as a Thoroughbred enterprise. “It’s had a few names: Noble Park, Racetree, Sun Stud and now Telemon, but the one constant has been that top horses keep coming off our hills. Of the yearlings we are taking to Magic Millions we’re hopeful there’s another Buffering, Gold Edition or Zoustar in our draft.”
Dan and Rae will head to the Gold Coast with a simple plan for their draft. “Getting good people to take them home and let them fulfil their potential is the name of the game. We sell at Magic Millions because it is a really good platform to offer well-conformed, early types and get them into good homes. We have taken them this far, but they can’t fulfil their potential unless we get them into the best racing programs and have them perform, and ultimately that’s what we want to be judged on.”
One filly that will have no problem finding a home is lot 329, Champion Sire Written Tycoon’s daughter out of O’Rachael. Dan described her as “a typical Written Tycoon, a nice moving filly, muscular, nice and square and looks like she’ll be early. Her mother was a G1 performed two year-old by Northern Meteor, so she’s got a precocious, profile and she presents that way physically. She’ll be a filly plenty of people will find and when they do they will love her.” A three time winner, O’Rachael was placed in the G1 Diamond stakes at two at Ellerslie.
Another that will be popular is lot 67, Russian Revolution’s daughter out of Fully Chargeable by the noted broodmare sire Charge Forward. Dan is pleased with her progress saying “She’s very forward and has an excellent topline. We’ve great confidence in the family and have invested in her half-sister Niccovi (Nicconi) who we have in foal to none other than I Am Invincible. Niccovi was up to the very best speed fillies in her Spring Carnival year being beaten a half head by Sisstar (Zoustar) in a G3 sprint at Flemington. Obviously we raced Sunlight and Sisstar, so we were very familiar with Niccovi and a filly from this family that is really being bred along makes her very appealing.” Fully Chargeable is already three for three runners to winners.
Astern is a stallion on the rise and Telemon have a lovely filly of his to offer out of the four-time Group winner Fiesta’s sister Reprimand. “Because of her physicality we thought she would be a perfect candidate for Magics. Reprimand is a big, imposing type with an impeccable action and she has passed those attributes through into this big, forward filly. We think Astern is a stallion that is doing a very good job with his best ahead of him such that we have supported him once again this season with some handy mares.” The filly, with an early foaling date, sells as lot 434.
There are some stunning colts among the draft as well, lot 339 by Golden Slipper Sire Sidestep out of the Spinning World mare Orbiting Belle, an excellent example. “Credit to the Magic Millions inspections team for finding him and putting him in Book One: they loved him. There isn’t much between him and the Sidestep – El Mansura (lot 1118) for the best Sidestep colt on the farm. Orbiting Belle was a stakes performer as a juvenile and has thrown a really good two year-old in Curvature (Snitzel). This colt is fluent and very well-made from a precocious family. He’s a great advertisement for Sidestep who is going from strength to strength.”
A persuasive case can be made that All Too Hard is one of the most underrated and best value sires in the country and he has another nice type in lot 841, a colt out of Causeway Queen. “Again the Sunlight connection is there as he is out of a stakes-winning Giant’s Causeway half-sister to the dam of the Magic Millions winner and from a family that needs no introduction. Not only is All Too Hard prolific with winners and stakes winners but he has shown he can get those X-factor type horses like Behemoth and Alligator Blood. This colt is a big, scopey sort of horse that is nice and correct and very relaxed. He’s a plain headed customer but he won’t be condemned for that. Again he’s a strong, Magic Millions type.”
For Dan and Rae this sale brings with it a different kind of excitement as they watch the first yearlings by the international G1 sprinter and resident stallion Jungle Cat go through the ring. Telemon have two Jungle Cat’s in their draft, but they will be watching with interest how much success their clients who have supported the horse achieve. “There are four or five Jungle Cat’s from other farms that are going to the Gold Coast that I’ve been and inspected and they are all really attractive, strong, really good physicals that are great candidates for Magic Millions. When you are using a horse like Jungle Cat you are asking him to impose himself genetically and when you look at the physical makeup of his progeny he has certainly done that. If there is going to be a stallion come from relative obscurity to take things by storm next season then I think he has a really good chance.”
Dan’s argument carries merit especially when looking at how his sire Iffraaj’s reputation has blossomed lately. “Since we got Jungle Cat, Iffraaj has really put a marker down. Wootton Bassett wasn’t particularly well known at the time, neither was Almanzor nor Hot Streak who has a G1 winner in Europe in his first crop, so Iffraaj has really franked himself as a sire of sires. Among the eighty-odd stakes winners by Iffraaj, the fastest of the lot is Jungle Cat. People who know the sire line will recognise his stock as having a very distinctive structure and a very distinctive head, so genetically Jungle Cat is really asserting himself and if they gallop like they look then he is a very exciting prospect.”
The first of the Jungle Cat’s off Telemon is lot 996, a colt out of the listed placed Startling Pleasure who has the G1 VRC Oaks winner Sandy’s Pleasure (What A Pleasure) as his third dam. “He’s a good type without being overly big, and we selected the mare specifically as a good pedigree match for Jungle since Iffraaj himself has a terrific record across Danehill line mares. His dam is four winners from her first four foals to race.” The other Jungle Cat is a Book 2 filly that sells as lot 1091, the first foal out of Star Witness’ daughter Casual Witness.
Also in Book 2 Dan and Rae have an excellent filly by another exciting first season sire in Harry Angel. “This filly is out of Tinjirarni, an Exceed And Excel mare and this filly has a lot of Exceed And Excel about her. A good moving filly by a world-class sprinter, she’s a Book 1 quality filly that we’ve deliberately placed in Book 2 as we think she will be a standout.” Tinjirarni won twice in Sydney, has had three foals race for as many winners and is a half-sister to the G1 winner at two in Apercu (Encosta De Lago).
The recent stakes win by Divine Prophet’s two year-old daughter See You In Heaven has highlighted the stallion’s ability to get a precocious type and Telemon will offer his daughter out of Adio from a family littered with juvenile blacktype as lot 1057. “Her mother is a really lovely Lonhro mare who was dominant in winning her only two starts. John Hawkes thought she was Group class but she broke down unfortunately. Adio has already thrown a listed winner in Charliese (Foxwedge) who continues to accrue blacktype as recently as Melbourne Cup day. Now that Divine Prophet has sired a stakes winning juvenile this past Spring, hopefully this filly will be well found. She has plenty of size and quality.”
The Telemon draft also carries another colt by Sidestep and fillies by Better Than Ready, Pride of Dubai and Rich Enuff all worthy of an inspection no matter what the budget. With so many good horses having previously come off the farm, the odds are there is another waiting to be bought in January.