Best On Breeding

Mark Smith - Friday April 26

Boom two-year-olds Prince Of Sussex (Toronado) and Sartorial Splendor (Brazen Beau) can give a huge boost to the stocks of their respective first season sires in Saturday’s inaugural running of the $1 million The Showdown at Caulfield for VOBIS Sires eligible horses at Caulfield on Saturday but we will look to a stallion that could be viewed as a defector from the Victorian Thoroughbred industry.

The trials and tribulations between warring parties for the services of Zoustar have been covered extensively in the press. Though he is now viewed as a true blue unionist standing at Widden Stud, his second crop was part of the Confederacy when he stood the season in Victoria at Woodside Park Stud.


That’s where The Showdown competitors Flostar and Sisstar were conceived.

As a full-sister to the Group 1 VRC Coolmore Stud Stakes, Group 1 VRC Newmarket Handicap and Group 1 MVRC William Reid Stakes winner Sunlight, Sisstar would be a logical Best On Breeding however since this race has been put on to honour the best that Victoria has to offer, let’s celebrate breeders that have been a real backbone of the industry down south, Rob and Yvonne Crabtree, of Dorrington Farm, whose red and white check colours will be carried by Flostar.

If for nothing else, the Crabtrees would earn a place in history as the breeders of Helsinge, the dam of Black Caviar.

Helsinge was a daughter of the Crabtree blue-hen Scandinavia who is also the dam of the Crabtree bred and owned Magnus.

Among Victoria’s best stallions, Magnus stands at Sun Stud and is the sire of The Showdown hopeful Magnicity, while Black Caviar’s brother Moshe, who also stands at Sun Stud is the sire of the Lindsay Park entrant Mishe Mokwa.

The Crabtrees not only bred Flostar (pictured left as a yearling) , but they also bred her dam Flokkati (Fastnet Rock) and granddam Markkha (Marscay) who was a daughter of the Crabtrees foundation mare Rich Haul.

The daughter of Haulpak left four stakes-winners, the first of which was the Zeditave colt The Heavyweight, who won the Maribyrnong Plate as a two-year-old and placed in the Group 1 Oakleigh Plate and Group 1 The Galaxy.

Rich Haul went on to produce dual Listed winner Zedrich and Listed winner’s Born Wester and Happy Strike.

Markkha (Marscay) was a winner at Caulfield while Flokkati was even better although somewhat of an enigmatic character.

The daughter of Fastnet Rock looked top drawer when finishing second to Star Witness at Moonee Valley at her career debut before finishing second to Roulettes in the Listed St Albans Stakes.

Coincidently, Roulettes is the dam of Group III BJ McLachlan Stakes winner Sun City who is to date the only winner to come from Zoustar’s current crop of two-year-olds.

Flokkati went on to win races at Colac and Caufield and earned further black-type when second to the mudlark Red Tracer in the Listed James Carr Stakes at Randwick.

A half-sister to two winners by Magnus and the recent Pierro winner Burlington Miss, Flostar was consigned by Supreme Thoroughbreds, on behalf of Dorrington Park, to the 2018 Inglis Premier Yearling Sale where she was knocked down to trainer Clinton McDonald for $110,000.

The Crabtrees obviously retained an interest and the daughter of Zoustar was photo-finished out of a perfect start to her career when second to Meuse at Caulfield back on April 6. (photo top by Grant Courtney)

With Damien Oliver in the saddle, we will be relying on her to claim the $500,000 winner’s cheque in a race that all Victorians should be behind.

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