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. He was at his peak at five, when he went through the season unbeaten, including in three Group One events, the Prix d´Ispahan, The Prince of Wales´s Stakes at Royal Ascot and the Prix Jacques le Marois, all at different distances, and was officially rated the best horse in the world. Fabre was convinced (and still is!) that he would have won the Arc, and was afterwards going to aim him at the Breeders´ Cup Classic, but an injury put a stop to those plans. Before his final start in the Prix Foy he had been sold to Darley (reportedly for 23 million euros), and began his stud career at Sheikh Mohammed´s Kildangan Stud in Ireland, where he stood for four years before spending one year at Dalham Hall before relocating to their French stud Haras du Logis in Normandy, where he remained until his death last Saturday.
As a stallion he also did very well, although not up to Galileo standards, and sired, among others, champion stayer Vaziribad and other Group One winners such as Ultra and Ribbons, while he is also broodmare sire of recent Royal Ascot winner Fanny Logan and classic winner Billesdon Brook. As he covered large and high quality books of mares throughout his career, there are almost certainly many more good winners to come. His fee this year was 7,000 euros, while he had started out in his first year in Ireland at a rather costlier 40,000.
As the best son of Monsun, he was destined to be a top stallion. The reputation of Monsun himself has never been higher than it is at present, with his sons active and successful all over the world; to take two current examples, King George winner Novellist, who stands at Shadai Stallion Station in Japan, and multiple group winner Vadamos, who shuttles between Ireland and New Zealand. Monsun´s sons are also going great in Franc and Ireland as N.H. stallions; indeed, Ireland´s top breeder Coolmore now advertises their N.H. stallions under the banner headline: “the MONSUN factor!”
Monsun has certainly been a major factor in the extremely successful record of German-bred in the world´s top races since the turn of the century. Two German sires standing out side this country are currently doing extremely well, and one of them Sea The Moon (Sea The Stars) is out of the Monsun mare Sanwa, a full sister to Derby winners Samum and Schiaparelli. Sea The Moon was a spectacular winner of the 2014 German Derby for owner-breeder Gestüt Görlsdorf, who still own a majority share, although he has stood throughout his stud career at Kirsten Rausing´s LanwadesStud near Newmarket. He has certainly made an excellent start with his first three crops; only recently he had his first Group One winner with Alpine Star , who took the Coronation Stakes at Royal Ascotand is now strongly fancied for the Prix de Diane (French Oaks) this Sunday. The fact that top international breeders like her owner, the Niarchos family, are sending him good mares is a compliment in itself. Sea The Moon, arguably the best son of Sea The Stars at stud, stands for 15,000 guineas, which, according to bloodstock expert Bill Oppenheim, makes him the best value stallion now standing in Europe.
Even more impressive however is the CV of Silvano (Lomitas), bred by Gestüt Fährhof, who was trained by Andreas Wöhler to win a string of lucrative international races around the turn of the century, and now stands at Maine Chance Farms in South Africa, which, like Fährhof, is owned by the Jacobs family. Like Manduro, Silvano was at his best at five years of age, when he won the Arlington Million, the Singapore Cup and the Audemars Piquet Q.E.II Cup (Hong Kong) and was also placed in the Sheema Classic in Dubai as well as running fourth in Australia´s top race, the Cox Plate. The original plan, when he retired to stud in 2003 was to shuttle him between Germany and South Africa, and he stood for two seasons at Fährhof before the outbreak of African Horse Sickness made shuttling impossible, so he has been in South Africa ever since, except for one year, when he came back to Germany and sired the German Derby winner Lucky Speed. “Germany´s loss is South Affica´s gain,” was one comment and that is certainly true as he has had a splendid career; he has been champion sire in South Africa four times and a fifth championship for 2019-2020 is also certain. Only last weekend his son Hawwaam confirmed his status as the best older horse in South Africa with another easy Group One success, while his daughter Summer Pudding is unbeaten in seven starts and has landed the local Triple Tiara.
Racing in this country was at a much lower level last weekend, and the same goes for this week, as most of our group class performers are waiting for next week´s Derby meeting at Hamburg. The most informative race last Sunday ón Hanover´s mammoth card was the listed Derby trial, but that was rather a non-event, as none of the first three to finish hold a Derby entry. The winner Kellahen (Wiesenpfad) made all the running and went clear in the straight to score by 3 ½ lengths. This was his fourth successive win and his GAG rating has been bumped up to 91, but he will have to improve a few pounds more to have a chance in the Derby. However connections are now considering supplementing him (at a cost of 65,000 euros); there is also a distinct possibility that he might be sold before the race, as there has apparently been plenty of interest shown. Supplementary entries from the U.K. and Ireland are also possible and at least two leading stables have made enquiries. We shall know much more this time next week.