International News Wrap

6 min read

American Pharoah off The Mark

It didn’t take American Pharoah (USA) (Pioneerof the Nile {USA}) long to register his first winner with his first runner Monarch of Egypt (USA) winning by 2 ¾ lengths over No Nay Never’s (USA) (Scat Daddy {USA}) Ming Warrior (Ire) at Naas in Ireland.

The colt was among the leaders early on in the five-furlong contest before ending the fun for the rest of the field in the final furlong to easily pull away with Ryan Moore aboard. After the race trainer Aidan O’Brien said that Royal Ascot may be an early season target for the colt.

“You’d have to be excited about what we see at the moment,” he told Thoroughbred Daily News. “Everything looks really right, but he was our first runner of the year so we didn’t really know what to expect. We’d been thinking of [Royal] Ascot, but he’ll have to run before then for experience. That’s what we always thought, he was an Ascot horse.”

A US$750,000 purchase at last year’s Keeneland September Yearling Sale by Peter Brant and Coolmore, he is from Group 2 winner Up (Ire) (Galileo {IRE}) who is a half-sister to two-time Group 1 winner and sire Dutch Art (GB) (Medicean {GB}). The colt’s third dam is German champion Palacegate Episode (Ire) (Drumalis {GB}), who is also the dam of Scandinavia champion King Quantas (Ire) (Danehill {USA}).

Monarch Of Egypt as a yearling

American Pharoah is entering his third year shuttling to Coolmore in Australia with the stallion standing for $66,000 in 2019.

Big Brothers Pride Promising Winner For Invincible Spirit

Invincible Spirit (Ire) (Green Desert {USA}) struck again in France on Saturday when his son Big Brothers Pride won the Group 3 Prix Sigy impressively.

The filly gave none of the runners any chance to even challenge for the lead in the straight, pulling away to win by an easy four lengths. Owned in partnership by Sheikh Fahad bin Abdullah Al Thani’s Qatar Racing and Kin Hung Kei, the filly is a half-sister to Group 1 winner Polydream (Oasis Dream {GB}) and was purchased at the 2017 Arqana Deauville August Yearling Sale for €400,000.

The victory came just a few hours after Qatar Racing’s Endless Drama (Ire) (Lope de Vega {Ire}) finished second in the Listed NZB Finance Sprint in New Zealand. Previously trained by Chris Waller in Australia, the entire won last year’s Group 2 Apollo Stakes at Royal Randwick.

Omaha Beach Splashes To Arkansas Derby Victory

In a very wet Grade 1 Arkansas Derby, Omaha Beach (USA) (War Front {USA}) backed up his Grade 2 Rebel Stakes victory when holding off Improbable (USA) (City Zip {USA}) by a length in a 1-2 finish for California raiders at Oakland Park.

Omaha Beach challenged for the lead as the field entered the first time and took it over. The colt galloped comfortably under Mike Smith and didn’t seem to feel the pressure as Improbable came up to challenge him in the far turn with Smith sitting chilly.

Smith gave Omaha Beach a few reminders throughout the stretch as Improbable stuck to him but there was never any real doubt about the winner. It was 5 ¾ lengths back to Looking At Lucky’s (USA) (Smart Strike {Can}) Country House in third. The victory secures Omaha Beach a spot in the Kentucky Derby with the colt having the second most points of any horse on the Kentucky Leaderboard with Improbable also secure in the field.

Trained by Richard Mandella, Fox Hill Farm’s Omaha Beach has one of the top families in the American stud book. His half-sister is champion Take Charge Brandi (USA) (Giant’s Causeway {USA}), with the pair out of a half-sister to champion Will Take Charge (USA) (Unbridled’s Song) and Grade 1 Florida Derby winner Take Charge Indy (USA) (A.P. Indy {USA}).

Their dam Take Charge Lady (USA) (Dehere) was a three-time Grade 1 winner herself and is from the family of War Chant’s (USA) (Danzig {USA})’s Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint winner Chamberlain Bridge.

More Than Ready’s Rushing Fall Wins Seasonal Debut

It was a second straight Grade 1 victory for Rushing Fall (USA) (More Than Ready {USA}) over the Keeneland turf on Saturday when the 4-year-old won the Coolmore Jenny Wiley Stakes with a front running victory.

Rushing Fall is one of three horses to win four or more stakes at Keeneland, tying with Take Charge Lady (USA) (Dehere {USA}) with four victories. The pair are behind only Wise Dan (USA) (Wiseman’s Ferry {USA}), who won seven stakes at the track in his career.

“I give all the credit to Mr. [Chad] Brown, the way he’s been training this horse since the layoff,” said jockey Javier Castellano. “This filly, she’s so nice – the way she broke out of the gate, the way she relaxed. I just enjoyed the ride. She (got) tired, but just a little bit. But she finished strong and did it very easy.”

Rushing Fall provides former Australian shuttle stallion More Than Ready with his 377th stakes victory spread across 192 stakes winners. The stallion completed his 18th – and final – breeding season in Australia last year with 84 of his stakes winners and 165 of his stakes wins from his southern hemisphere crops.

Owendale Scores First Stakes Victory In Derby Prep

Owendale (USA) (Into Mischief {USA}) spoiled Anothertwistafate’s (USA) (Scat Daddy {USA}) chance to secure a spot in the Kentucky Derby when winning the Grade 3 Stonestreet Lexington Stakes by 1 ¾ lengths.

Running from the back of the pack, Owendale made his move around the turn and pulled away from there to earn his first 20 points on the Road to the Kentucky Derby. The points put him in the 29th position on the leaderboard with the colt unlikely to get into the Kentucky Derby unless there are significant defections in the next few weeks.

Second placed Anothertwistafate needed the 20 points awarded to the winner to move into the top 20 on the leaderboard, instead taking home eight points to sit 23rd on the leaderboard with 20 horses allowed in the field.

Owendale is from the unraced Bernardini (USA) (A.P. Indy {USA}) mare Aspen Light, who is a half-sister to a Keeneland Group 1 winner in Great Hunter (USA) (Aptitude {USA}). This is also the family of champion filly Stellar Wind (USA) (Curlin {USA}).