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Breeding & Racing in Germany

David Conolly-Smith: www.galoppfoto.de - Frank SorgeDavid Conolly-Smith: www.galoppfoto.de - Frank SorgeIn order to be of assistance to our growing number of readers from abroad, we are with immediate effect publishing in every issue of Turf Times an English page, giving in compact form all the latest racing and breeding news from Germany in English. It will be written by the well-known racing journalist David Conolly-Smith, who has lived in Germany for many years. He is the German representative of the International Racing Bureau and writes regularly on German racing and breeding for the Racing Post, Irish Field, EBN, TRC and many other publications.

Ausgabe 629 vom Freitag, 31.07.2020

Last Sunday´s Group One Grosser Dallmayr-Preis was according to the official ratings the best race run in Germany so far this year. It is any case easily the best race over the trip of ten furlongs, and this latest edition certainly lived up to expectations despite the small field. Three of the seven runners were trained abroad, itself a novelty this year when travel is so complicated; Barney Roy (Excelebration) and Spotify (Redoute´s Choice) are both owned by Godolphin and trained by Charlie Appleby in Newmarket, while the supplemented Patrick Sarsfield (Australia) was the first runner ever in Germany for Irish trainer Joseph O'Brien.

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Ausgabe 628 vom Freitag, 24.07.2020

The most significant race run last weekend in Germany was the listed Hoppegartener Steher-Preis, which can be regarded as a trial for the Group Two Oleander-Rennen, Germany´s top staying race which has now been rescheduled for November 1st, but will still apparently be sponsored by Comer International and will have its original prize-money. Last Sunday´s easy winner Quian (Mastercraftsman) certainly put himself into the picture with an easy victory which places him clearly in the top ranks of German stayers. The 4yo is grey like his sire, who was a champion miler but also gets horses that stay well, including winners of the English and French St. Leger. The German St. Leger, in mid-September is also of course a possibility for Quian, who has shown tremendous improvement since being switched to long distances.

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Ausgabe 627 vom Freitag, 17.07.2020

In Swoop won the IDEE 151st Deutsches Derby: Torquator Tasso placed second. Both are sons of Adlerflug. www.galoppfoto. de - Frank SorgeIn Swoop won the IDEE 151st Deutsches Derby: Torquator Tasso placed second. Both are sons of Adlerflug. www.galoppfoto. de - Frank SorgeLast week´s English page ended with the words: “(In Swoop) has the ideal pedigree… Schlenderhan has won the German Derby 18 times; number 19 could now be coming up and this runner ticks most of the boxes.” Now, with the benefit of hindsight, we know that In Swoop (Adlerflug) in fact ticked all the boxes and he finished best of all to win last Sunday's IDEE 151st Deutsches Derby to give Gestüt Schlenderhan their 19th winner of the race as owner and 20th as breeder, a proud record indeed.

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Ausgabe 626 vom Freitag, 10.07.2020

Last weekend, which saw the running of the two major classics in both England and France, as well as other top races, saw some good results for German breeding as well as a number of near misses. Alpine Star, the Niarchos-bred daughter of Sea The Stars, who had given that Görlsdorf-bred stallion his first Group One winner at Royal Ascot two weeks earlier, came very close to winning the much more prestigious Prix de Diane, but after leading for much of the way, just lost out in a four-way photo finish, finishing second, beaten a short neck. In the less prestigious Italian Oaks the same afternoon, Memphis  (Jukebox Jury) was defeated by the same margin; there was however consolation for her Hoppegarten-based trainer Roland Dzubasz, as his 3yo filly Stex (Lord of England) ran out a ready winner of the Group Three Premio del Giubileo.  There was also consolation for Sea The Moon when his son Pondus was an easy winner of the listed Lenebane Stakes at Roscommon on Tuesday.

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Ausgabe 625 vom Freitag, 03.07.2020

This week we received the sad news that Manduro (Monsun), certainly one of the best ever German-bred racehorses and stallions, has died following a heart attack at the age of 18. He was bred by Rolf Brunner and was sold as a BBAG yearling for 130,000 euros to Baron Georg von Ullmann, in whose colours he raced throughout his extremely successful career. Originally trained by Peter Schiergen, he was the top-rated German juvenile of 2004, when he won both his starts, including the prestigious Preis des Winterfavoriten by five lengths. In a shortened career as a three-year-old he won two of three starts, including the Group Three Preis der Deutschen Einheit at Hoppegarten. Transferred to Andre Fabre, he only won once at four, but was placed in all other seven starts, all in top company.

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Ausgabe 624 vom Freitag, 26.06.2020

That must certainly have been the emotion experienced by Mülheim trainer Yasmin Almenräder after Sunday´s racing at Düsseldorf, which started disastrously for her: her first runner of the day was left at the post and finished last, the next acted up at the start and had to be withdrawn, and then in the main event, the 100th running of the Group Two German 1,000 Guineas her big hope Lancade (Areion), who had been supplemented for the race, got loose in the paddock and had to be caught by a rival trainer.

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Ausgabe 623 vom Freitag, 19.06.2020

The IDEE 151st running of the Group One Deutsches Derby will be run on July 12th, one week later than originally planned because of the delays in the racing programme caused by the coronavirus crisis. The normally week long Derby meeting at Hamburg will now be concentrated into three days, Friday, Saturday and Sunday, all with about twelve races and starting before noon. The good news is that the prize money for the Derby remains unchanged at 650,000 euros, making it not only by far the richest race in Germany but also one of the most valuable in Europe, as most leading countries such as France, the U.K. and Ireland have all sharply reduced their prize money. Only Italy is otherwise keeping race values at the old level, as the money is paid there out of ministry funds – but often with a very long delay.

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Ausgabe 622 vom Freitag, 12.06.2020

It was a relatively low key weekend in Germany this time, with no group races. However we had listed races at Düsseldorf on Saturday and Hanover on Sunday, with the Derby Trial at the former track the most interesting event as far as the future is concerned. Normally this is not one of the strongest trials, but it was won last year by Laccario (Scalo), who went on to win the Union-Rennen and then the German Derby, so the winner Adrian (Reliable Man) has a lot to live up to.

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Ausgabe 621 vom Freitag, 05.06.2020

We had another successful long weekend in Germany with two Group Two races – the Diana Trial at Hoppegarten and the Mehl-Mülhens-Rennen (German 2,000 Guineas) at Cologne – as the main features. The mild winter and dry spring meant that most leading trainers already have their strings in good form despite the enforced break, with the usual suspects such as Andreas Wöhler and Peter Schiergen well to the fore. However the trainers who have so far dominated the top races are two relative youngsters, Cologne-based Henk Grewe (37) and Munich´s Sarah Steinberg (32).

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Ausgabe 620 vom Freitag, 29.05.2020

For the third successive weekend Germany staged racing under the usual lockdown conditions, and once again all well went. Baden-Baden had twelve races, including two group races, on both Saturday and Sunday and one has to say that the meeting was a complete success, although the atmosphere was certainly weird with no spectators, no foreign runners and no on course betting. However the betting turnover, all off course or online, held up really well and was indeed very good by German standards, although peanuts compared to Japan, where the turnover on last week´s Oaks (Yushun Himba) – also run behind closed doors - was apparently five times more than the entire year´s turnover on all races in Germany.

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Ausgabe 619 vom Freitag, 22.05.2020

After the successful resumption of German racing a fortnight ago, we had an equally successful second week of racing – all behind closed doors, of course - with Munich staging racing last Friday with Düsseldorf on Saturday and Cologne on Sunday. All these fixtures also proceeded well with no problems, and it is clear that we are going to have to get used to this kind of racing with no spectators, strict distancing and jockeys wearing face masks for quite a long time to come. Germany appears to be coping much better with the coronavirus crisis than most other countries and restrictions are very slowly being relaxed. The German racing authorities have now published a provisional list of fixtures up to the end of August, and it is expected that all these meetings will still be held behind closed doors, although it is possible that slightly more people will at some stage be allowed on to the racecourse, e.g. owners, although always under strict conditions.

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Ausgabe 618 vom Freitag, 15.05.2020

These are difficult times for almost everybody, but it must be said that the past week has been very positive for the German racing and breeding industries. On the one hand, there have been some good results for German-bred runners and stallions in several different countries, and on the other, the resumption of racing after a two month break last week in Hanover (Thursday), Cologne (Friday), Mülheim (Saturday) and Hoppegarten (Sunday) must be regarded as a complete success.

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