Group III ATC San Domenico Stakes is on this weekend and this early season spring
pipe opener traditionally marks the return of some of the better three
year-olds as well as unearthing the up and coming star - which in 2009 was
Prepared by Chris Waller for his breeder Geoff Grimish and partners, Shellscrape was a tough and consistent juvenile, who made the quantum leap that day and never looked back.
Precocious and talented from the moment he went into work, Shellscrape made his debut as a spring two year-old with a close second to smart type Phenomenal Lass and went on to start a further eight times as a juvenile, ending his season with his first stakes victory in the Listed BRC Bicentennial Stakes at Eagle Farm over 1400 metres.
Resuming from a break in the San Domenico, Shellscrape impressed connections when he powered clear to win the 1000 metre dash by a length on a dead track in a tick over 58 seconds.
Trainer Chris Waller said at the time: "He is just a tough horse ... a very, very tough horse. Each run he got better last preparation and he looked great when he won his last race in Queensland. We decided then, just to let him have a week in his box. The owners were fortunate enough to support me on that idea and we set him for this race. It was a great ride and a tough effort. You'll see him when he comes back in ... nothing fazes him, he's got the world ahead of him."
Shellscrape continued on an upward trajectory when he smashed a smart field to win the Group II AJC Roman Consul Stakes over 1200 metres by more than four lengths and then travelled to Melbourne for the Group I VRC Coolmore Stud Stakes, finishing an agonizingly close and luckless third to Headway and King Pulse beaten a nose and a short half head.
For the remainder of his career, Shellscrape competed almost exclusively in the elite Group I sprints finishing third to red hot sire prospects Nicconi and Wanted in the Group I VRC Lightning Stakes with Starspangledbanner in fourth place.
His moment of glory came in the Group I AJC The Galaxy over 1100 metres, a race won in past years by leadings sires Luskin Star, Snippets and more recently Charge Forward and Magnus, whose first progeny will race this season.
With a valuable Group I victory on the resume, Shellscrape retired with the overall record of six wins and nine placings from 25 starts with prizemoney of $730,500, his achievements putting his young sire Dane Shadow firmly on the map.
A Group III winning son of Danehill (USA) from the champion filly Slight Chance, Dane Shadow (pictured) started his stud career at a modest service fee of $12,100 at Kitchwin Hills and has proven an overwhelming success.
Shellscrape was the star from his first crop which has also produced Group II winner Hurtle Myrtle with subsequent crops yielding Group I SAJC Derby winner Shadows in the Sun, Group III winner Turnitup and stakes-winner Red Tracer, as well as a host of smart winners.
Shellscrape was the first winner for Dane Shadow, the first stakes-winner, the first Group I winner and will now be his first son at stud.
On the pedigree front, Shellscrape has much to offer being a full brother to Red Tracer and one of four winners from four foals to race from the Snippets mare Kisma, whose dam Vain Hope is by champion sprinter and influential sire Vain.
The family has produced stakes-winners Hayley's Hope and Kirkberg as well as last season's juvenile stakes-winners Defiant Dame and Snow Excuse.
On paper, Shellscrape always appealed as a fast maturing sprinter and that is exactly what he turned out to be - those enviable qualities sure to be imparted to his offspring in the future.
Shellscrape will stand his debut season as the foundation sire at Wattle Grove Stud near Berrima on the Southern Highlands at a fee of $8,800.
Inglis Bloodstock consultant Ian Macpherson (who brokered the deal for Shellscrape to stand at Wattle Grove) commented: "Varda Green is the person controlling movements at Wattle Grove. She is of the opinion that Shellscrape represents the perfect opportunity to stand a stallion in the Southern Highlands to serve the area between the Hunter Valley and Victoria."
For more information on Shellscrape contact Varda Green on 0409 394 093 or 02 4877 2333 or email email@example.com