That old adage about good racemares not making good broodmares came up during a discussion in the Punchestown press room on Wednesday, when Quevega’s son Facile Vega recorded his second Grade 1 success in the day’s Champion Bumper.
Like all received wisdom there has to be an element of truth to it, otherwise it would not have become such a prevailing belief. And I am sure that many of you reading this will be able to point to numerous examples of champions failing to pass on a modicum of their talent and tenacity to their offspring.
However, the likes of Miesque and Serena’s Song, to name just two, were champions on the track and in the breeding shed too, founding families who continue to be hugely influential around the globe today.
Indeed, Miesque will be represented in Sunday’s Qipco 1,000 Guineas by her great-granddaughter Discoveries, last year’s Moyglare Stakes winner. The daughter of Mastercraftsman is the third individual Group 1 winner produced by Alpha Lupi, an unraced daughter of Rahy and East Of The Moon – Miesque’s Poule d’Essai des Pouliches-winning daughter.
Reams have been written about Miesque and her legacy on the breed worldwide, but for the purposes of this discussion we are talking only about her female-line descendants.
Discoveries (pictured below in front) wasn’t the only great-granddaughter of the supermare adding further Group 1 glory to the family last season. Loves Only You, a full-sister to Dubai Turf winner Real Steel whose first crop of 115 are two-year-olds this season, added four top-flight successes to her resume last season, including the Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf for Japan.
The Deep Impact mare is a granddaughter of Monevassia, a Storm Cat half-sister to East Of The Moon. Monevassia had already foaled the European champion two-year-old filly of 2005, Rumplestiltskin, who in turn is the dam of Tapestry, successful in the Yorkshire Oaks.
The other two fillies currently in the top three of the betting for Sunday’s mile Classic are out of Group 1-winning mares, with Lillie Langtry, dam of the gambled upon maiden winner Tuesday, already a proven successful broodmare.
A daughter of Danehill Dancer, Lillie Langtry recovered from sustaining a knee fracture in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies’ Turf that required surgery, to return to the track at three and win the Coronation Stakes and Matron Stakes.
Out of the Darshaan mare Hoity Toity and from the family of Lead On Time and Great Commotion, Lillie Langtry was an excellent choice for crossing with Galileo as the well-known affinity between the late phenomenon and both Danehill Dancer and Darshaan has been extensively documented.
Lillie Langtry herself has played quite a substantial role in promoting the effectiveness of the cross. She is the dam of the outstanding Minding, who was Europe’s champion two- and three-year-old filly with seven individual Group 1 triumphs, including the 2016 1,000 Guineas and Queen Elizabeth II Stakes, victories that propelled her to that year’s Cartier Horse of the Year Award.
Now a broodmare for Coolmore, Minding has a two-year-old Deep Impact daughter, and Dubawi yearling colt and filly foal.
It would be highly unlikely that Lillie Langtry produces another Minding, but her record as a broodmare since has been none too shabby. Last year’s Irish 1,000 Guineas winner Empress Josephine is another one of her daughters and Lillie Langtry has also foaled the Group 3 winner Kissed By Angels.
If Tuesday were to overcome inexperience on Sunday and win, she would be the third Classic winner from just seven foals out of her dam, who has a two-year-old full-sister to Toy, Minding, Empress Josephine et al named Delightful and visited Frankel last season.
Tenebrism is already a Group 1 winner courtesy of her success in the Cheveley Park Stakes last year, and while the daughter of Caravaggio is not certain to get the trip on pedigree, she does come from a family of Guineas winners.
Her dam Immortal Verse didn’t add a Classic to her glittering trophy cabinet, but under her third dam are Poule d’Essai des Pouliches winners Tie Black and Valentine Waltz and 1,000 Guineas winner Hermosa, as well as Group/Grade 1 winners Last Tycoon (a good sire), Sense Of Style and Hydrangea.
It’s a wonderful Kilfrush Stud family and dual Group 1-winning miler Immortal Verse wound her way into Coolmore’s magnificent broodmare band following her sale by Luke Lillingston’s Mount Coote Stud to BBA Ireland for 4.7 million gns at the Tattersalls December Mare Sale in 2013.
Tenebrism is by far the most successful of Immortal Verse’s offspring so far. The Group 1 winner is expecting a Wootton Bassett foal this year.
Away from the head of the market, one broodmare stands head and shoulders above all others – the amazing You’resothrilling.
Cork maiden winner Toy’s dam was ‘only’ a Group 2 winner but You’resothrilling would draw level with Hasili as the dam of five individual Group/Grade 1 winners were Toy to emerge victorious on the Rowley Mile on Sunday.
The full-sister to 2,000 Guineas winner Gleneagles, Irish 1,000 Guineas winner Marvellous and Joan Of Arc, victorious in last season’s Prix de Diane, would be the fourth Classic winner and fifth individual Group 1 winner out of the full-sister to Giant’s Causeway, surpassing the breed-shaping Urban Sea’s tally of four.
Even more incredibly, all of You’resothrilling’s previous seven runners have earned black type in Group 1 contests, with six of them winning a Group race. The 2020 Irish 2,000 Guineas second Vatican City is the only one of her offspring who so far has failed to win a stakes race. Talk about a family of high-achievers.
Having been faithful to Galileo for her entire breeding career, You’resothrilling was sent to Dubawi last season and the resulting foal would be her first since Toy was born in 2018. Whether the enforced change because of Galileo’s death makes any difference to You’resothrilling’s record will keep all of us pedigree fanatics watching closely.