Best On Breeding

Mark Smith - Thursday January 27

Rosehill holds the primary interest on Saturday, with the Group III Widden Stakes for the fillies and the Group III Canonbury Stakes for colts and geldings, which features three $1million plus yearlings.

The $1,250,000 I Am Invincible colt Zambezi River, and the $1,000,000 Not A Single Doubt colt Flashing Steel demonstrated ability at their only starts.

However, the likely favourite is the unraced Chris Waller-trained Great Barrier Reef.

The son of I Am Invincible could not have been any more impressive in a 900m barrier trial at Canterbury last November.

He was not seen out again until a 902m trial at Rosehill on January 17, when he appeared to have plenty left to offer when sixth in a bunched finish behing the $1.2million Written Tycoon colt Pyrois.


Sporting the purple, white seams, striped sleeves colours of  Derrick Smith, Great Barrier Reef was a $1,400,000 purchase by Tom Magnier from the Kia Ora Stud draft at the 2021 Inglis Australian Easter Yearling Sale.

That made him the equal second most expensive of the nine $1million lots by I Am Invincible at the sale.

A half-brother to the talented L'Cosmo (Lonhro), Great Barrier Reef is the third foal of the top-class mare Classic Endeavour.

Great Barrier Reef a $1.4million Easter Yearling

Bred by Catherine Remond, Cosmic Endeavour was a $230,000 purchase for owners Don and Judy Kelly from the Willow Park Stud consignment at the 2012 Inglis Australian Easter Yearling Sale.

The daughter of Northern Meteor won seven races and almost $1.5million for Gai Waterhouse, highlighted by triumphs in the Group 1 ATC Canterbury Stakes and Group 1 Tatt's QLD Tattersall's Tiara.

Cosmic Endeavour was the most accomplished Performer for the 3-time Listed Stakes winner Crevette, a sister to two-time Hong Kong Horse Of The Year Fairy King Prawn (Danehill) and Group 1 Salinger Stakes winner and Wattle Brae Stud stalwart, Easy Rocking (Barathea).

Crevette's dam Twiglet was honoured as the 2001 Australian Broodmare Of The Year and was also a top-class performer on the track.

The daughter of Twig Moss (FR) became the first Sydney stakes winner for Graham Begg when she defeated the champion Triscay, and Twiget's stablemate Whisked in the Listed Furious Stakes at Randwick.

Also, winner of the Group II VRC Edward Manifold Stakes and Listed AJC Reginald Allen Handicap, Twiglet was a daughter of the stakes-placed Extradite (Bletchingly), one of five broodmares bequeathed to Catherine Remond by her father, Stanley Wootton.

One of the others was Biscarina (Biscay), the dam of the champion sprinter Schillaci, an 8-time Group 1 winning son of Salieri (USA).

Cosmic Endeavour does not have a yearling this season, having missed to I Am Invincible in 2019.  

Cosmic Endeavour (image Mark Smith)

But she has a filly foal by Too Darn Hot (GB) and is back in foal to Godolphin's triple Group 1 winning son of Dubawi.

Two stallions have dominated the last five editions of the Canonbury Stakes, but neither have a runner this year. Exceed And Excel won with Zethus (2021), McLaren (2019), and Performer (2018). Redoute's Choice captured the race with Prague (2020) and Pariah (2017).

It looks a high-class renewal of the Widden Stakes. It will be exciting to see the return of Merson Cooper stakes winner Ebhaar (I Am Invincible) and the Merchant Navy filly Drisana, who covered herself in glory when a troubled second to the top-class Coolangatta in the Gimcrack Stakes last October.

More Reading...
First Winner for Harry Angel
The first son of Dark Angel to shuttle to Australia, Darley’s Harry Angel (IRE) broke the ice overnight to post his first winner with Vicious Harry saluting at Chantilly and interestingly he is from an Australian bred mare.
Another Group I Win for Atlantic Jewel Son
Superstar Fastnet Rock mare Atlantic Jewel was a champion on the track and has also done the job at stud as the dam of blue-blood Irish bred Galileo gelding Russian Emperor won his second Group I event in Hong Kong on Sunday when taking out the Standard Chartered Chater Cup (2400m) at Sha Tin .
Sires With Winners - Friday May 27
Here is the full list of 52 stallions which had winners throughout Australasia today with winners and result details.
Mares in Foal to Dirty Work Sell For Up to $900,000
The Spendthrift Australia Dispersal at the Magic Millions National Broodmare Sale this week highlighted the outstanding opportunity they gave to exciting young sire Dirty Work with 28 mares selling for up to $900,000 that had been covered by the brilliant son of Written Tycoon.
Pedigree Watch – UK – Nicks that Click
Ahead of the big Guineas meetings at Newmarket on Saturday and Sunday, Godolphin are already in the winning groove producing two stakes-winning three year-olds at Newmarket overnight that are well capable of winning a lot better races and hold interest on the pedigree front.
One to Watch – Goulburn
Pierro gave us a promising 2YO winner at Goulburn on Friday that will be well worth following.
Lighthouse to Visit Golden Slipper Winner Farnan
Kia Ora Stud are leaving no stone unturned to ensure Golden Slipper winner Farnan has the very best chance of success and one of the star mares he will cover this spring is Group I ATC Coolmore Classic winner Lighthouse (USA), who was sold at Magic Millions this week for $1.7million.
Kiwi Candidates Join Darley Flying Start
Godolphin has selected a dozen up-and-comers from around the world for the 2022-2024 edition of its Flying Start programme, including New Zealanders Liam Cunningham and Annabel Adams.
Deep Impact's Glint Of Hope (JPN) Triumphs in a Thrilling Australasian Oaks
The only time the royally-bred Deep Impact (JPN) filly Glint Of Hope (JPN) missed a place came in the VRC Oaks last spring. That was a distant memory when a Daniel Moor special paved the way for a maiden stakes win in Saturday’s $502,000 Group 1 Grand Syndications Australasian Oaks (2000m) at Morphettville.
Gold Standard Joins Widden Stud Victoria
Following the announcement that former Spendthrift Australia sires Dirty Work and Overshare would be taking up stud duties at their Riddells Creek property this season, Widden Victoria are delighted to announce that Gold Standard will also be joining the ranks.