Bobby Zen

With the three-quarter-length victory of Washington Heights (GB) in Newmarket’s G3 Abernant S. in mid-April, the late Zoffany (Ire) celebrated his first group winner as a paternal grandsire. Already the first stakes winner in that role, Washington Heights is by the 2017 G3 Phoenix Sprint S. victor Washington DC (Ire), who was also runner-up in the G1 Keeneland Phoenix S., a race won by his sire five years earlier.  Now, with the advent of his final crop of 3-year-olds, Zoffany is poised to add to his legacy.

Bred by the Brosnan family’s Epona Bloodstock at their Croom House Stud, Zoffany was sold to John Magnier for 220,000gns out of Book 1 of the Tattersalls October sale in 2009. Aidan O’Brien trained the colt to five victories from seven starts at two including the Phoenix and G3 Tyros S.  At three, Zoffany was a close second in both the G1 St. James’s Palace S.–to Frankel (GB) no less–and the G1 Prix Jean Prat in France.

Retired to Coolmore Stud for the 2012 season at €7,500, he spent nine full seasons there, standing for up to €45,000, until his death in January of 2021 from liver failure. Like their sire, members of his first crop were precocious, and his total stakes winners after Royal Ascot stood at four, with three striking at the iconic five-day meeting of 2015: G2 Norfolk S. winner Waterloo Bridge {Ire}, G3 Albany S. heroine Illuminate (Ire), and the aforementioned Washington DC in the Listed Windsor Castle.

Zoffany never looked back, and his overall black-type winners have increased from 38 when he died in January of 2021 to 63, including five Group 1 winners, through to May 7. There are surely more to come. A half-brother to Group 3 winner Wilshire Boulevard (Ire) (Holy Roman Emperor {Ire}) and multiple group winner and two-time Group 1-placed Rostropovich (Ire) (Frankel {GB}), Zoffany’s final crop of foals numbers 112, bred at €22,500 in 2020.

Since New Year’s Day, the stallion is already enjoying an international renaissance with his progeny and has five stakes winners of all ages to his name in both hemispheres. His first stakes horse of the year was the gelding Al Nayyir (GB), second in the Listed Al Khail Trophy in Dubai in January, who was only two lengths off  Tower Of London (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}) in the G2 Dubai Gold Cup at the end of March. Zoffany’s international results were further padded that month by an Australian listed and Group 3 wins for Fawkner Park (Ire) and Osmose (Fr) respectively, with the former doubling up at listed level in the Wagga Wagga Gold Cup last week. His latest stakes winner is 4-year-old filly and ‘TDN Rising Star’ Gather Ye Rosebuds (GB), successful in the Listed British Stallion Studs EBF Daisy Warwick Fillies’ S. at Goodwood on 2,000 Guineas Day.

 

Current Sophomores Finding Their Feet

Focusing on Zoffany’s final crop, however, his Northern Hemisphere standout has been undoubtedly the smart filly Fun With Flags (Ire), who claimed the Listed Prix Rose de Mai in March just as the Flat season was getting off the ground. The best foal out of the Galileo (Ire) mare Marie Celeste (Ire), the €50,000 Goffs Orby yearling turned €62,000 Tattersalls Ireland Goresbridge Breeze-Up graduate followed up with a solid second in the G3 Prix Cleopatre in April. Kin to G1 Irish St Leger hero Sonnyboyliston (Ire) (Power {GB}), the Jerome Reynier trainee holds entries this Sunday for the G1 Poule d’Essai des Pouliches and the G2 Prix Saint Alary as well as the G1 Prix de Diane on June 16.

The Erika Gilliar colourbearer is not the only progeny by Zoffany to hold group aspirations, as Jayarebe (Fr) continued the fine year for his sire with a 3 1/4-length score in the Listed Feilden S. at the Craven meeting. The €180,000 Tattersalls October yearling, out of Listed Prix Joubert heroine and group-placed Alakhana (Fr) (Dalakhani {Ire}), will take on another son of Zoffany, Bracken’s Laugh (Ire), in Thursday’s Dee S. At Chester. Jayarebe too, has the advantage of Galileo in his female family, albeit through his granddam Dubai (Ire), a stakes-placed half-sister to a trio of German stakes winners anchored by the sire Davidoff (Ger) (Montjeu {Ire}), who landed the G3 Dr. Busch-Memorial.

Bracken’s Laugh has already been a frequent visitor in these pages this year and has proved a sale ring and racecourse star for Cormac Farrell, who sold him for 200,000gns at the 2023 Tattersalls Guineas Breeze-Up Sale to Richard Hughes and Ted Durcan after acquiring him for just €55,000 at the Tattersalls Ireland September Yearling Sale. Now a winner of two of his three starts for Bernardine and Sean Mulryan, the €35,000 Goffs November foal sailed home a 2 3/4-length winner of the Cardinal Conditions S. over the Chelmsford all-weather for trainer Richard Hughes on Apr. 6. Of German extraction, as his dam, the stakes-placed Guardia (Ger) (Monsun {Ger}), is a full-sister to dual German Group 1 winner and sire Getaway (Ger), the colt is likely to continue turning heads as the season progresses and the distances increase.

Fun With Flags | Scoop Dyga

 

 

At the time of writing, 68 of Zoffany’s final crop have raced, with 19 (28%) of those being winners. Other notable winning progeny to keep an eye on are detailed below.

Andrew Balding trains Works Of Art (Ire) for the King and Queen. Runner-up at listed level at Redcar at two, the daughter of the multiple stakes-placed Make Fast (GB) (Makfi {GB}) is a half-sister to G2 July S. winner Tactical (GB) (Toronado {Ire}), and her second dam, the Van Nistelrooy mare Raymi Coya, won the 2007 edition of the G3 Oh So Sharp S.

The fourth black-type horse out of Zoffany’s final crop to date is Argentum (Ger), a son of the winning Anna Kallista (Ger) (Kallisto {Ger}), herself a half-sister to multiple group winner and sire Aspectus (Ire) (Spectrum {Ire}), as well as the dam of three stakes winners, among them G1 Criterium de Saint-Cloud runner-up Willie The Whipper (GB) (Whipper). The €75,000 BBAG September yearling was second in a German listed race for trainer Peter Schiergen at Hanover last October, and won for the second time there going 2200 metres on May 1 for Liberty Racing. He holds an entry for the G1 Deutsches Derby.

Anita’s Star (GB) is a multiple winner in Italy, just like dual scorer Misemerald (Ire) for trainer Philip Kirby in the UK. Other winners include the filly Cashanda (Fr), a Sumbe homebred who holds a G2 Ribblesdale S. entry, and the colt Rosenzoo (Ire), a half-brother to the stakes-winning dam of multiple group winner Rosscarbery (Ger) (Sea The Stars {Ire}), second in the G1 Prix Jean Romanet.

 

A Question Of Succession?

The current best hope for continuing Zoffany’s male line is Haras de Bouquetot stallion Thunder Moon (Ire), who is standing his second season after taking the G1 National S. and running third in the G1 Dewhurst S. at two. As a 3-year-old, he backed up that form with a head loss in the G1 Prix Jean Prat. The G2 Mill Reef S. winner and ‘TDN Rising Star’ Sakheer (Ire) remains in training at four for KHK Racing and is set for a reappearance ahead of Royal Ascot.

Colts from Zoffany’s final crop that could yet find a home as stallions include the well-bred Celestial Reign (Ire). A €200,000 Goffs Orby yearling, the son of Sarawati (Ire) (Haafhd {GB}) was unplaced in his only start so far for Joseph O’Brien and Teme Valley Racing, but is a full-brother to G1 Premio Jockey Club winner and St Leger runner-up Ventura Storm (Ire).

The unraced Bamburgh (Ire) is a full-brother to Classic winner Mother Earth (Ire) and half to Group 3 winner Ocean Jewel (Ire) (Sioux Nation) and is in the care of Charlie Johnston.

 

Broodmare Daughters Showing The Way

Regardless of what his final crop accomplishes on the racecourse, it is more likely that Zoffany will prove more potent as a broodmare sire. His sextet of stakes winners in that sphere are anchored by G1 Prix Marcel Boussac heroine Tiger Tanaka (Ire) (Clodovil {Ire}) and Licancabur (Jpn) (Silver State {Jpn}) struck in the G3 Nakayama Kimpai just six days into the new year. This past Sunday, Tamfana (Ger) (Soldier Hollow {GB}) ran an eye-catching fourth in the G1 QIPCO 1000 Guineas, and could yet be poised to add a Group 1 rosette.

   Fashionably (GB) holds a fair weight of expectations as the most expensive yearling from the final crop of her late sire. Knocked down for €320,000 out of the Arqana August sale, the daughter of Saharan Rose (Fr) (Wootton Bassett {GB}) races for Michael Tabor, and has a fourth-place finish from two starts this spring in France. Her dam is a half-sister to the dams of G3 Prix Six Perfections winner See The Rose (Ire) (Kendargent {Fr}) and G3 Prix de Ris-Orangis hero King Malpic (Fr) (King’s Best).

Of his Group 1-winning daughters now at stud, the Niarchos-bred Albigna (Ire) was bought for €3.7 million by Coolmore last November and has a 2-year-old colt by Wootton Bassett (GB) named Attack (GB) as well as a yearling filly by Dubawi (Ire). The aforementioned Mother Earth produced her first foal, a filly by Frankel, in early February, while Prosperous Voyage (Ire) was bought for 2.4 million gns by Katsumi Yoshida of Japan’s Northern Farm at Tattersalls in December.

As Coolmore’s David O’Loughlin said at the time of his death, “Zoffany was a great servant and he’ll be a big loss.” That statement rings true today.

The post Final Crop Masterpieces Still Possible For Zoffany appeared first on TDN | Thoroughbred Daily News | Horse Racing News, Results and Video | Thoroughbred Breeding and Auctions.

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