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The English page: Racing & Breeding in Germany 20

First Group win for Palace Prince. ©Dr. Jens Fuchs


David Conolly-Smith


Ausgabe 381 vom Donnerstag, 20.08.2015

The most interesting race run last weekend in Germany was the Grosser Preis der Sparkasse Krefeld for three-year-olds over an extended ten furlongs at Krefeld. This event, previously run at Baden-Baden as the Fürstenberg-Rennen, is traditionally a race for horses that failed to win the German Derby and five of the eight declared runners (one later withdrawn because of the very soft ground) had met at Hamburg, with Palace Prince (Areion) doing by far the best of them in second place. The Gestüt Höny-Hof homebred had been supplemented for the Derby after winning a listed race at Compiegne two weeks previously and certainly justified his connections´ boldness by collecting 130,000 euros for the runner-up spot.

The complete race video, photos and full result here (under "Renndetails"/Palace Prince/No. 3: click

Palace Prince was clearly the form pick for the Krefeld race and duly justified even money favouritism, but after taking the lead early in the straight and appearing to be cruising to an easy win, he was suddenly challenged by Iquitos (Adlerflug), who finished very strongly indeed, and Palace Prince in the end only scored by a head, with the rest six lengths further back. They were headed by Devastar, another son of Areion, and it was certainly a good result for Gestüt Evershorst's stallion (champion sire here in 2010 and 2013), as he is also the damsire of Iquitos.

Palace Prince´s dam Palace Princess (Tiger Hill) is a half-sister by Tiger Hill to the famous ”Pepper” family of the late Peter Battel. Four of these Pepper horses, all by Big Shuffle, were among Germany´s top milers around the turn of the century, and one well remembers the result of the 2003 Grosse Europa-Meile at Cologne, one of Germany´s best mile races, when the full brothers Peppercorn and Peppershot fought out the finish. Obviously there has to be a slight question mark over Palace Prince´s stamina, as Areion was one of our best sprinters and was himself by U.S.- bred Big Shuffle, who won the 1987 Cork and Orrery at Royal Ascot (now the Diamond Jubilee Stakes) for Moyglare Stud and Dermot Weld. However Areion is out of a Caerleon mare, and many of his offspring stay much better than he did, and Tiger Hill adds further stamina; Palace Prince was certainly not stopping when runner-up to Nutan at Hamburg and connections are now considering another supplementary entry, this time for the Grosser Preis von Baden.

Runner-up Iquitos also deserves praise for his fine effort. He was moving up sharply in grade here, but had won his previous three races, on each occasion running on strongly from the rear. Owned by a bunch of golfers, Iquitos is likely to be aimed next at the Preis der Deutschen Einheit in early October at Hoppegarten, a track that should certainly suit him.

Although the rest of the German racing over the weekend was less inspiring, there were a number of German-trained runners in some of the top international races, and it was very pleasant to see Lucky Speed (Silvano) come back to form with a comfortable victory in the American St. Leger at Arlington Park. This was his first victory since he won the German Derby over two years ago, and he is likely to stay in North America for a few more weeks with a crack at the Canadian International a possibility. He is from the only recent German crop of Silvano, who stands at Andreas JacobsMaine Chance Farm in South Africa. The original intention was to shuttle the Lomitas stallion between his home stud at Fährhof and South Africa, but the very complicated quarantine regulations for horses coming from South Africa made this impractical. However as champion sire in South Africa, and now with this top performer from his 2010 German crop, Silvano has certainly been a huge success. During his racing career for Andreas Wöhler, he won the Arlington Million in 2001, his annus mirabilis when he was voted Germany´s Horse of the Year without ever running a race in this country! 

Lucky Speed was bred by Ittlingen and sold at the BBAG yearling sales for 46,000 euros to IVA/Alles on behalf of Dr. Arend  Oetker, one of Germany's richest men, who races under the nom de course of Stall Hornoldendorf.  With winnings of well over half a million euros to date, he can be regarded as a bargain, and so can Stall Fürstenhof's Wild Chief (Doyen), who was bought back by his breeders for just 18,000 euros at the BBAG October sale in 2012. Wild Chief, regarded as a Derby horse last year – and he did indeed finish fourth in the Prix du Jockey Club and fifth in the Hamburg version- has been a revelation since being brought back in distance this year. After a very easy win in Hanover´s Group Two mile race in July, he ran an excellent third in Sunday´s Group One Prix Jacques le Marois at Deauville – the best performance by a German-trained miler for many years. The Prix du Moulin at Longchamp next month is now on the agenda, possibly followed by the Breeders´ Cup Mile.

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