Lasting influence left by Lucayan Princess
Queen's Trust: Grade 1 winner keeps her family flying high
PICTURE: Edward Whitaker (racingpost.com/photos) The blue hen who keeps producing the goods
By Nancy Sexton 3:59PM 12 NOV 2016
LUCAYAN PRINCESS retired from stud duties as one of the most accomplished producers of her generation, one who had gifted Saeed Manana with an array of memorable moments.
Her progeny were trained more often than not by Clive Brittain, who obviously developed a tremendous understanding of the family, and they were on the whole progressive horses who thrived on tough campaigns.
Group 2 winner Needle Gun, the best horse sired by the nondescript stallion Sure Blade, won three races but was placed on a further 15 occasions, including six times at Group 1 level. His younger half-brother Luso, by Salse, was even better, winning four Group 1 races on the continent led by the Derby Italiano during his 35-race career.
Cloud Castle, by In The Wings, took the 1998 Nell Gwyn Stakes en route to running second in the Prix Vermeille, while Warrsan, by Caerleon, rewarded the patience of his connections to win his first Group 1, the 2003 Coronation Cup, as a five-year-old. A grand campaigner, he won four Group 1 races up to the age of six, including a second renewal of the Coronation Cup in 2004.
Lucayan Princess left behind 11 foals, five of whom were black-type horses. The daughter of High Line had a brief career on the track herself, winning two races as a juvenile for Sir Henry Cecil and Edward St George including the 1985 Sweet Solera Stakes. She made just one start at three when third in the Cheshire Oaks and was sold for 180,000gns at that year's Tattersalls December Sale.
However, there's no doubt she imparted a degree of durability and tenacity to her offspring, highlighted by the fact that between them they won or were placed in 50 Group races.
Yet her lasting gift to the breed is as the dam of a series of daughters who are today ensuring this family is absolutely flying.
Daughters Luana, Lunda, Maskunah and Mantesera struck early in their stud careers as the dams of Group 3 winners Hattan, Tastahil, Blue Monday, Laaheb and Nideeb. However, the family has really taken off this year, with various branches accounting for Mehmas, German Group 2 winner Royal Solitaire, Prix Marcel Boussac third Dabyah and Queen's Trust, who put an exclamation mark on the family's excellent 2016 with a dramatic victory in the Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf at Santa Anita.
While Mehmas descends from her Soviet Star daughter Lunda (also third dam of Avenir Certain), Queen's Trust, Royal Solitaire and Dabyah pay a tremendous tribute to the growing influence of Cloud Castle.
For that, some credit goes to Cheveley Park Stud. They are often a player at the high end of the yearling filly market with an eye towards their broodmare band and, with the purchase of Queen's Best back in 2004, they secured a filly who is already exerting a lasting influence on the stud.
At 310,000gns, she wasn't a cheap yearling. But as the fourth foal out of Cloud Castle her appeal was obvious and sent to Sir Michael Stoute, who had trained her sire King's Best, she rewarded their investment by winning the 2007 Winter Hill Stakes and Chalice Stakes.
Like so many of her family, Queen's Best peaked beyond her three-year-old year, which has to bode well for the future prospects of her daughter Queen's Trust.
The Dansili filly is the fourth foal out of Queen's Best and her second winner following Royal Seal, a two-time winner for Stoute in 2014.
Queen's Best – who is one of two Group 1-producing daughters of King's Best this year alongside Lidana, dam of Grand Prix de Paris winner Mont Ormel – has a yearling Exceed And Excel colt named Cavalry and a filly foal by Pivotal.
In addition to Queen's Best's good deeds, the Cloud Castle family has also been significantly fleshed out in recent years by other daughters Reverie Solitaire, Urban Castle and Samdaniya. Reverie Solitaire, a 2001-foaled daughter of Nashwan, also peaked as an older horse, winning a French Listed race as a four-year-old in the colours of Leonidas Marinopoulos in 2005 when Queen's Best was still a two-year-old.
Reverie Solitaire has subsequently foaled the high-class German miler Royal Solitaire, winner of the Badener Meile and runner-up in the Grosser Dallmayr Bayerisches Zuchtrennen this season.
Urban Castle, by Street Cry, won last year's River Eden Stakes, while Samdaniya, by Machiavellian (also the sire of Mehmas's dam Lucina) is the dam of Dabyah, who followed up two easy wins in minor company with a third to Wuheida in the Prix Marcel Boussac. One of the highlights from Sepoy's first European crop, Dabyah is priced at around 16-1 for next year's 1,000 Guineas.
Queen's Trust becomes a 20th Group/Grade 1 winner for Dansili, who was also represented on the Breeders' Cup card by the admirable Flintshire, second to Highland Reel in the Turf.
Their performances continued the successful association that the Juddmonte stalwart has enjoyed with the event following the previous success of Dank in the 2013 Filly & Mare Turf and placings of The Fugue (2013 Turf and 2012 Filly & Mare Turf) and Passage Of Time (2007 Filly & Mare Turf).
As Martin Stevens highlighted earlier in the week, his dam Hasili has also featured prominently in the history of the Filly & Mare Turf as the dam of two previous winners in Banks Hill and Intercontinental. Banks Hill is also the dam of Romantica, who finished second to Dank in the 2013 renewal of the race.
Dansili has made great inroads as a sire of sires in recent years, primarily through Zoffany and the early promise of Famous Name, Requinto and Bated Breath. However, he is also gaining real momentum as a broodmare sire; Dansili mares accounted for seven stakes winners across Europe this year, among them Time Test, Peace Envoy and Muffri'Ha to complement an earlier group that is led by Chicquita and Astaire.
So while there should be much for connections to look forward to next year on the track from Queen's Trust, she also looks primed to become a very valuable producer in due course.
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