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DARLEY’S BIG WEEKEND ANCHORED BY VICTORIAN HORSES

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Zapateo ridden by Damien Oliver wins the Neds How Now Stakes at Caulfield Racecourse on September 17, 2022 in Caulfield, Australia. (Photo by Reg Ryan/Racing Photos)

Darley’s Andy Makiv described it as a huge weekend when two Victorian sired horses representing the powerful Godolphin stable all had significant victories.

Zapateo (Brazen Beau x Jerezana) scored in the Group 3 How Now Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield on Saturday.

It was the four-year-old mare’s third black type victory of which all have come this year, starting in May with a win in the Denise’s Joy Stakes (1100m) at Scone.

She then won the Group 3 Toy Show Quality Handicap (1100m) at Randwick.

Ingratiating (Frosted x Obsequious), a Group 3 and dual Listed winner, took out the last race on the heavy nine at Caulfield – the 1100m handicap.

Brazen Beau and Frosted are among the stallion roster at Darley’s Victorian Northwood Park, while Street Boss has been relocated to the group’s New South Wales operation.

Makiv said those type of weekends were rare, so it was a fantastic result for all involved.

“Zapateo is a very good mare and has won three Stakes races now,” he said.

“She is right at the top end of the mare sprinters, I would have thought, so there are some good targets for her going forward, whether it’s in the spring or next autumn.

“Such a high quality sprinter, she has trained on well into her into fourth year, so it’s exciting for her and the stallion.”

Makiv said it was good to see Ingratiating bounce back.

It was his first win since the Group 3 Vain Stakes (1100m) victory at Caulfield in August last year.

“He is obviously a very good fresh sprinter,” Makiv said.

“I just think he is very good horse and has been all the way through.

One of the leading two-year-olds, he was placed in the Golden Slipper and a Blue Diamond, now bouncing back as a four-year-old.

“He is still a stallion and I’m sure he has got some targets, but he is now a prospect who has been able to perform at ages two, three and four.”

Makiv said that hopefully there was a goal like the Group 1 Manikato (1200m) for Ingratiating, a race that he finished third in last year.

This year’s $2m Manikato will be run at The Valley on Friday, October 21.

“It might the sort of race he can target,” Makiv said.

“He ran third in it last year as a three-year-old and hopefully he can go a few better this year as a four-year-old.”

Makiv said they’d always considered Ingratiating as a stallion prospect, especially as he was so good as a two-year-old and is such a good type.

Makiv said Ingratiating just needs to register a win at Group 1 level as he has been so competitive against the best of his age group in previous seasons.

“He has got the credentials if he can hit the board at the ultimate level,” Makiv said.

“He is still intact, as I mentioned, so that’s the business we are in, to try and create stallions and he still has that profile if he can get it done.”

Although all of Darley’s current stallions are Group 1 winners, Makiv said there are always exceptions for them to stand stallions that haven’t achieved at the ultimate level.

He said they had previously stood stallions that weren’t Group 1 winners like Group 2 winner Kuroshio.

“We sold Hanseatic (Group 3 winner) that went to Rosemont so there are options for all these well-bred, performed colts,” Makiv said

“Certainly racetrack performance at the elite level makes it easier for them to stand, but it’s not to say that they don’t have a role either with us or someone else should they not.”

He said the dual Group 2 winner Sidestep (Exceed and Excel x Dextrous), which sired Group 1 Golden Slipper winner Kiamichi from his first crop, kicked off his stallion career with Darley and now stands at Telemon Thoroughbreds. Darley still own half of the stallion.

“You only need to look at the sires table to see there are a few stallions at the top there that weren’t Group 1 winners themselves and they can come from anywhere and everywhere, but ultimately we like to stand the best performed horses,” Makiv said.

The reason for Darley currently standing only Group 1 winners is because they have been fortunate enough to shuttle stallions around the world.

“We have been able to fly out stallions including Earthlight, Ghaiyyath, Palace Pier and Pinatubo and have Bivouac or Microphone supplementing the roster here and we have been fortunate that we’ve had these multitude of champions to choose from that fills the roster,” he said.

“And it hasn’t always been the case and the stable globally has been in great form and we will continue to add to it with horses like Anamoe, etc.”

Makiv said Anamoe, the favourite for this year’s Cox Plate, had obviously been a fantastic horse with five Group 1s.

He said to win at the highest level at two, three and four was rare.

“He is just an outstanding racehorse and it’s a privilege to have anything to do with him,” Makiv said.

“He is a wonderful horse and it was another good win on the weekend.”

Makiv suspects that Anamoe with join the Darley stallion roster next year, either in Victoria or New South Wales.

While Darley’s proven stallions were being well supported, he said they had an extraordinary band of first, second and third season sires which he described as the best he’s ever seen.

“Horses like Bivouac ,Too Darn Hot, Ghaiyyath, Pinatubo and Palace Pier are all champions in their own right and it’s extraordinary to think what we’ve been able to add them to the roster,” he said.

“It’s an exciting time for the breeders as these are horses that we rarely got an opportunity in Australia to breed to and these are the best of the best.

“He is a three-time Group 1 winner by Exceed and Excel and is having outstanding foals.”

The post DARLEY’S BIG WEEKEND ANCHORED BY VICTORIAN HORSES appeared first on Thoroughbred Breeders Victoria.

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