Caufield saw the first Gr.1 race for two-year-olds in Australia on Saturday, the Blue Diamond Stakes. The odds-on favourite Pariah was beaten by half a length by the second chance, Catchy, who, same as the beaten favourite, is the product of a stallion from Danehill’s line with a Mr Prospector mare.
Looking at the results of the recent editions of the race, these two stallions seem to be the ideal building elements for a pedigree of a potential winner. In the last ten years, six editions were won by horses whose pedigree was built on the combination of these two individuals – with just a single exception by such a combination, when one of the parents belonged to Danehill's paternal line and the second to that of Mr Prospector.
This year’s winner Catchy represents the Danehill x Mr Prospector cross – she is by Fastnet Rock (Danehill) and out of Cats Whisher, daughter of of Fusaichi Pegasus (Mr Prospector) and the winner of the Milady Stakes (Gr.2) and the runner up in the 1,000 Guineas (Gr.1) at Caufield. Fusaichi Pegasus failed to meet high expectations as a sire, but his daughters are successful, having produced nine Gr.1 winners, of whom two are by Fastnet Rock.
The same cross has produced the last year’s winner Extreme Choice, by Not A Single Doubt (Redoute’s Choice), whose dam Extremely is by Hussonet (Mr Prospector).
The 2015 edition was taken by Pride of Dubai, a product of the reverse cross, a stallion of Mr Prospector’s line, Street Cry (Machiavellian), and Danehill’s daughter Al Anood, the dam, among others, of a Gr.1 winner in South Africa, Enaad. Just behind him were fillies Reemah and Lake Geneva, Danehill’s granddaughters whose dams did not come from Mr Prospector’s line but the U. S. giant played a major role in their pedigrees.
The same is the case with the 2013 winner Miracles Of Life. Her sire, Not A Single Doubt (Redoute’s Choice), is Danehill’s grandson, the dam Dazzling Gazelle is by More Than Ready, a stallion of the Halo line, whose damsire, however, is Mr Prospector’s son Woodman.
Two years before the race was taken by a horse representing the Mr Prospector x Danehill cross. An impressive victory by 4 and ½ lengths was scored by chestnut Sepoy, son of Mr Prospector’s grandson Elusive Quality (Gone West) and Danehill’s daughter Watchful.
Danehill’s daughters in Australia were successfully covered by the Chile imported Hussonet (Mr Prospector) who has produced seven black-type winners with them, including one Gr.1 winner, Reaan, who beat in the 2008 Blue Diamond Stakes the later Gr.1 winner All American by a neck.
From the last ten editions six were won by thoroughbreds who have Danehill and Mr Prospector in their pedigrees. The success rate of this cross in the Blue Diamond Stakes, however, is not limited to the last ten years. A year before Reaan, the race was won by Sleek Chassis, whose pedigree is not built on the Danehill - Mr Prospector cross, but the pedigree of her sire Flying Spur is, even in the purest form: Flying Spur, the runner up in the Blue Diamond Stakes, was the son of Danehill and Mr Prospector’s daughter Rolls.
It should come as no surprise though, that the connection of these two individual will be a key to success in the Blue Diamond Stakes. Blue Diamond is the first two-year-old Gr.1 of the Australian season and, therefore, we should expect from its winners not jus high class, but also precocity. Moreover, Danehill’s blood is present in half of thoroughbreds foaled in Australia and if you look for another suitable source of speed and precocity, you cannot find a better one than Mr Prospector. Despite all of this their joint success in the Blue Diamond Stakes is remarkable and although it is an example of the narrowing blood base, it equally serves as a proof of these two to produce precocious and classy horses.