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The English page: Racing & Breeding in Germany 3

Group Three-Winner: Gestüt Fährhof's La Saldana. www.galoppfoto.de - Sandra Scherning


David Conolly-Smith


Ausgabe 364 vom Donnerstag, 23.04.2015

Three-year-olds continue to hold centre stage in Germany and last Sunday saw a number of extremely promising classic candidates at both Cologne and Munich. The top race, in theory at least, was the Group Three Schwarzgold-Rennen for fillies over a mile at Cologne, one of the best trials for the German 1,000 Guineas to be run at Düsseldorf on May 31st. It looked a strong field on paper and the race ended with a stirring battle between Gestüt Fährhof's La Saldana (Fastnet Rock) and Stall Lenau's Bourree (Siyouni). The two were still locked together inside the final furlong, but La Saldana pulled out a bit extra in the closing stages to score by half a length, with three lengths back to Gestüt Ebbesloh´s Winnemark (Lando), who just held Gestüt Röttgen's Weichsel (Soldier Hollow) for third. The first four are all homebred and should certainly pay their way this season; all eight runners here are entered in the Düsseldorf classic and we can certainly expect to see some of them line up, although clearly the first two will have the most obvious chances.

La Saldana, as a daughter of Fastnet Rock, is unlikely to stay much beyond a mile, but she is from one of Fährhof's best families; her fourth dam, Love In (Crepello) was in fact one of the stud´s foundation mares half a century ago and her ancestors include a host of Fährhof-bred champions, including German Derby winners  Lagunas and Lavirco, as well as Lomitas and Lirung. Racing manager Simon Stokes confirmed after the race that she is likely to go straight to the Guineas; she also has an entry in the Coronation Stakes at Royal Ascot and she is an exciting prospect.

However she doies not have much in hand of Bourree, whose connections were adamant after the race that she was so far nowhere near 100%. She is a daughter of the Lomitas mare Bearlita, whose dam Bearall (Al Hareb) was a listed winner and has bred several winners, including Bear King (Mujtahoid). Bourree won last autumn´s Preis der Winterkönigin and on pedigree is likely to be best at about a mile.

The complete race video, photos  and full result here (under "Renndetails"): click!

Two maiden winners at Cologne on Sunday also deserve attention, Stall Ullmann's homebred colt Guignol (Cape Cross) - and Gestüt Ittlingen´s homebred filly Lovelyn (Tiger Hill) - the race: click!; both scored by a neck, but they look to have bags of potential. Guignol is highly rated in his stable and won on his debut;  he is the eighth foal and fifth winner out of Guadalupe (Monsun), a smart filly who won the Italian Oaks (then a Group One), and was runner-up in the Yorkshire Oaks. His year-older half-brother Giuliani (Tertullian) was runner-up in last week´s Frühjahrsmeile. Lovelyn was only beaten a nose on her only start in 2014 by the subsequent Preis des Winterfavoriten winner Brisanto (Dansili) and hopes are also high for her career; she is the fifth foal and fifth winner out of Laurella (Acatenango), who retired to stud unbeaten after winning two minor events, and was an own sister to top class Lando, winner of the Japan Cup, Deutsches Derby, Grosser Preis von Baden (twice) and many other championship races.

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

The complete race video, photos  and full result here (under "Renndetails"/Lovelyn No. 1): click!

The bookmakers favorite for the German Derby: Quasillo. www.galoppfoto.de - WiebkeArtThe bookmakers favorite for the German Derby: Quasillo. www.galoppfoto.de - WiebkeArtAndreas Wöhler, trainer of La Saldana, was not at Cologne, but together with several other leading trainers had flown south to Munich to watch a conditions race for three-year-olds over eleven furlongs worth a modest 3,000 euros to the winner (less than a tenth of the group race he had won at Cologne). His runner here was another Fährhof homebred Quasillo (Sea The Stars) and he must have been mighty pleased with what he saw.  Quasillo was another one making his debut and despite showing unmistakeable signs of greenness, he quickened like a class act when easily disposing of the favourite, the Brümmerhof-bred Shimrano (Monsun), who was however conceding weight. Shimrano, sold last autumn to Australian Racing after his impressive debut win, was up to last week joint favourite in ante-post betting for this year´s Deutsches Derby but has now been replaced by Quasillo.

The complete race video, photos  and full result here (under "Renndetails"/Quasillo No. 6/Shimrano  No. 2): click!

One could hardly fail to be impressed by the way Quasillo won. He has the pedigree to match as well, being by Sea The Stars (sire of last year´s German Derby winner Sea The Moon) out of an Acatenango mare, a listed winner herself, whose first foal had been the Group One winner Querari (Oasis Dream); her own dam Quebrada (Devil´s Bag) had won the German 1,000 Guineas and been runner-up in the Ptreis der Diana. Trainer Wöhler was however cautious about discussing prospects for Quasillo: “He is such a big baby,” he said, “and this race will have done him a lot of good. We shall probably look for another small race before testing his mettle in a proper Derby trial, like the Union-Rennen.”

One reason for Wöhler's caution is that he has so many smart three-year-olds in his Ravensberg yard that he is going to have problems keeping them apart. Currently operating at a 65% strike rate in Germany this year, Wöhler is bringing out another potential star this Sunday at Krefeld, in the Dr. Busch-Memorial, usually the most reliable trial for the German 2,000 Guineas (Cologne, May 25th).  Karpino, by Cape Cross out of a Sadler´s Wells mare, was also bred by Fährhof but was recently sold to Pearl Bloodstock;  he will be ridden by Sheikh Fahad´s retained jockey Andrea Atzeni on Sunday. Germany´s leading bookmakers Racebets currently make him odds-on for Sunday´s race and joint second favourite at 11-1 with Shimrano and Guignol for the German Derby, for which Munich winner Quasillo is now at 7-1.

David Connolly-Smith

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