Pitchall Stud relocate last stallion Passing Glance
Passing Glance: tranferred to Batsford Stud in a joint-venture
PICTURE: Mark Cranham (racingpost.com/photos) Pitchall Stud relocate last stallion Passing Glance
By Martin Stevens 5:15PM 24 OCT 2016
BRITAIN is set to lose another stallion base, and one that was the scene of a popular rags-to-riches story, with Pitchall Stud set to relocate its last remaining sire.
In recent years the Warwickshire stud, owned by David and Kathleen Holmes, stood Midnight Legend, who achieved almost cult status among racing and pedigree fans, alongside Passing Glance.
But with Midnight Legend's death in July the couple have decided to reduce their workload and concentrate on their breeding programme, so Passing Glance has been transferred to nearby Batsford Stud in a joint-venture with the Gloucestershire operation.
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Passing Glance, a 17-year-old son of Polar Falcon, has developed into a useful jumps stallion himself, having supplied Cheltenham Festival winner Attaglance, also successful at Aintree's Grand National meeting, and promising sorts Avidity and Fountains Windfall. He is also the sire of Group 1 Flat scorer Side Glance.
"It's the right time to move him to Batsford as he's looking quite promising and if he takes off it will mean a lot of work covering more mares, and David and I aren't getting any younger," said Kathleen Holmes.
"We still have a lot of breeding stock here so we'll concentrate on that, and Batsford is very close so it will be easy to walk in our own mares. We've got plenty of daughters of Midnight Legend. He's looking like becoming a good broodmare sire and crosses well with Passing Glance."
Holmes also reflected on the fairytale of Midnight Legend, who was bought from the late Sir Stan Clarke for just £31,000 having covered small numbers of moderate mares in his early years at stud. The son of Night Shift made hay with those poor chances and brought fame and fortune to Pitchall Stud as the sire of stars such as Midnight Chase, Seeyouatmidnight, Sparky May and Sizing John.
"The response to Midnight's death was overwhelming – we couldn't believe it, we had emails, letters and phone calls from all over Britain," she said.
"We had a letter out of the blue from a lady in Birmingham who had followed the horse throughout his career – we had no idea how much he'd touched people."
Pitchall Stud has stood stallions since 1974 but dealt with riding ponies and hunters before it stepped into the limelight with Midnight Legend.
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