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The Young Guns of Australasia
31 Jul 2012 | By

With the 2011/12 racing season now drawing to a close, a feature of the Australasian sire premierships is the emergence of a number of exciting young stallions.

In particular, there are four young sires that stand out as having won major premierships and who already have sons at stud or entering stud this season.Champion galloper and Australian Horse of the Year Lonhro numbered 11 Gr.1 wins in a stellar racing career.

Retired to stud in 2004 early indications suggest he has carried his dominance on the racetrack through to his performance at stud.

This young Darley-based stallion won the Australian Sires premiership in the 2010/11 season becoming the first stallion since the great Danehill to achieve this feat with only four crops of racing age.

This season Lonhro will finish second to Fastnet Rock on the general sires table however he collects the Champion 2YO Sires title due in part to the deeds of his outstanding 2YO Triple Crown winning son Pierro.Lonhro now commands a stud fee of $A110,000 and his sons at stud already include Gr.1 winning galloper Denman and O’Lonhro.

In New Zealand, the brilliant Gr.1 Stradbroke Handicap winning galloper Thorn Park shares a similar distinction. Also retired to stud in 2004, Thorn Park was crowned New Zealand’s Champion Sire in the 2010/2011 season, becoming the first stallion since Zabeel to win the sire premiership there with only four crops of racing age.

The leading sire of Gr.1 winners in Australasia last season, Thorn Park has enjoyed another memorable season to finish second in 2011/12 to veteran sire O’Reilly. Thorn Park’s representatives include five times Gr.1 winner Jimmy Choux and four times Gr.1 winner Veyron in addition to the very smart Gr.1 performed galloper Ocean Park, who finished an unlucky second in the Gr.1 Rosehill Guineas effectively depriving Thorn Park of back to back winners in this prestigious race.

Standing in 2012 at Windsor Park Stud, Cambridge for $22,000, Thorn Park will be joined in the New Zealand stallion ranks by his outstanding son Jimmy Choux who commences stud duties in September.Australia’s champion sire elect in the current season is Fastnet Rock, another outstanding Gr.1 winning galloper who retired from the racetrack in 2005.

Fastnet Rock has cemented himself in the top echelon of Australian stallions and has an unbeatable lead of over $3 million in 2011/12. Fastnet Rock’s headline acts have been Gr.1 winning fillies Atlantic Jewel, Mosheen, Planet Rock & Sea Siren who have helped to establish his service fee at $A220,000 for 2012.

Like his sire Danehill before him, Fastnet Rock already has a number of sons at stud including Wanted, Hitchinbrook and this season’s retirees Smart Missile and Foxwedge. Joining Lonhro, Thorn Park and Fastnet Rock to complete an illustrious quartet of successful young sires is shuttle stallion High Chaparral, a former stablemate of Thorn Park now standing alongside Fastnet Rock at Coolmore Stud.

Not since the legendary Sir Tristram has a NZ based sire created such a big impact with his first crop runners as High Chaparral. Retired to stud in 2005, High Chaparral won the 2010/11 Dewar Stallion award on the back of just two crops to race.

Shoot Out got the ball rolling for High Chaparral as a 2YO in the winter of 2009 with his QTC Sires Produce Stakes victory. The following spring High Chaparral’s progeny exploded onto the racing scene led by So You Think’s blistering performance to win the Cox Plate and backed up with a pair of Group One wins in the Victoria Derby and Spring Champion Stakes for Monaco Consul.

The autumn continued in the same vein with High Chaparral siring an AJC Derby trifecta in the form of Shoot Out, Descarado & Monaco Consul.

High Chaparral now stands for $A77,000 and his influence is poised to continue further through him having champion galloper So You Think and Gr.1 winners Monaco Consul and Redwood at stud.

Lonhro, Thorn Park, Fastnet Rock and High Chaparral, a celebrated quartet indeed whose success looks sure to propel them to greater heights in the future.