Adelaide or Galileo and Danzig without Danehill

The meeting at Moonee Valley offered, as usually, a number of interesting races of which two of them, in my opinion, belong among the best what we may have seen on the world racecourses not only just this year. The first was the fantastic finish of Manikato Stakes, where six horses in line fought for triumph, the second was the Cox Plate and the excellent performance of the three-year-old Adelaide, the very first European winner of this race.

Adelaide in Cox Plate, photo Racing and Sports

The Aidan O’Brien trained colt run a fantastic race at Moonee Valley and thanks to the great support from Ryan Moore in his saddle achieved his most prestigious success so far. He is another Gr.1 winner by Galileo whose dam comes out of Danzig’s line. This is nothing new, one black-type winner in four by Galileo is out of a dam whose paternity line heads towards Danzig. But Adelaide, as well as another star of this year, Australia, are somewhat exceptions in that the influence of Danzig in the dam’s pedigree does not come through Danehill but other Danzig’s sons.

Much has been written about the Galileo x Danehill combination. It has achieved its first big success with the unbeaten two-year-old Teofilo, winner of both the National Stakes and Dewhurst Stakes in 2006. His successes may have inspired breeders in the next mating season when Galileo covered, among others, Danehill’s daughters Grey Lilas, Secret Garden or Kind, who gave birth to future classic winners such as Golden Lilac, Roderic O’Connor and, above all, Frankel, who shifted the demand for this combination to a yet higher level.

As of today, the combination of Galileo with the daughters of Danehill has produced twenty-six black-type winners (13.7% foals of racing age) who have won a total of sixty-eight black-type races, including twenty-five Gr.1 races. It is the success rate in the major races, which, alongside the mighty Frankel, makes this nick especially attractive.

How does Galileo, however, fare with daughters of other Danzig’s sons? Are the results of Danehill’s daughters so exceptional even compared to daughters of other Danzig’s sons? Let us have a look at it. A cursory look at the statistics will tell us that Galileo has produced seven black-type winners with daughters of other Danzig’s sons. This is much fewer that with daughters of Danehill, but then opportunity played its role too – the overall number of Galileo’s racing of age progeny produced with the non-Danehill sons of Danzig is less than a half against the progeny of Danehill’s daughters. Three of those seven black-type winners won a Gr.1 race – Lush Lashes, Was and Adelaide. The share of black-type winners of all foals of racing age amount to 8.1% which is comparable to Galileo’s progeny generally and is significantly lower that the share of black-type winners out of Danehill’s daughters. Here, however, it is necessary to differentiate – Galileo has produced horses with daughters of twenty-three Danzig’s sons, of which only five (including Danehill) were able to produce a black-type winner with Galileo. Most black-type winners (three) were produced with the daughters of Green Desert (Was, Battle of Marengo, Lay Time), two with dams by Anabaa (Lush Lashes, Spiritjim), one with daughters of Elnadim (Adelaide) and Roi Danzig (Elle Gala). Two black-type placed horses were produced by Galileo with daughters of Dayjur.

The combination of Galileo with daughters of Green Desert and Anabaa has even a higher share of black-type winners than with Danehill’s daughters (16 and 15 per cent to be precise) but given the lower number of progeny these numbers tell us less than the statistics of the Galileo x Danehill nick. Adelaide is one of mere two horses sired by Galileo and out of daughter by Elnadim, so that this combination has 50% share of black-type winners, but it is, at the same time, a proof that no conclusion is to be drawn from two horses. But it is worthwhile to mention that the winner of the Darley July Cup Elnadim, whose biggest success at stud is the New Zealand Gr.1 winner Culminate, is from the same nick Northern Dancer x Raise A Native as Galileo and despite the fact that as a sire he did not made it among the elite, his excellent Fall Aspen family could help him in the role of damsire.

As has been already said, most of Danzig’s sons, or rather their daughters, have failed to produce a black-type winner with Galileo but it is difficult to draw any conclusion out of this and compare them to Danehill, since these stallions include such both little known names such as the unraced Slant or Gr.3 placed Mister C, and the stallions of excellent class but not so great stud record such as Polish Patriot or Danzig Connection.

But let us return to Adelaide. His dam Elletelle won the Queen Mary Stakes (Gr.2) and finished third in the Phoenix Stakes (Gr.1) behind Saoirse Abu and Henrythenavigator as two-year-old, as a three-year-old her biggest achievement was the victory in the sprinter Sweet Mimosa Stakes (L). During her career, she raced just once (with no success) over more than six furlongs.

Adelaide is her first product. A year later she gave birth to his full brother Puissant, maiden winner at Redcar a few days ago. Nine months after giving birth to Puissant, Elletele, in foal with Galileo, was sold at Arqana December Breeding Stock Sale for EUR 850,000, but unfortunately died a few weeks later.

The granddam Flamanda started her racing career in England but was more successful in Germany where, as a four-year-old, she won five races over distances 1,700 to 1,900 metres and she ran fifteen times in her most successful season. At stud she produced, besides Elletelle, Freedom, winner of two listed races at Baden-Baden and one at Dortmund, later to become the dam of two black-type placed horses Free Winner and Battle of Saratoga. Another daughter of Flamanda, Mizzava, was too successful in black-type races: she was third in the 1,000 Guineas Trial Stakes (Gr.3) last year and second in a listed race at Naas.

The great granddam Nemesia won two races including the Chester Stakes (L) and has produced nine winners, including the Italian-listed Senorita Greta and successful hurdler Nemisto. She is the granddam of Mabait, the winner of the Pomfret Stakes (L).

Another top performing Galileo’s son, owned by Coolmore, will certainly head to stud. Coolmore has welcomed two Galileo’s sons in the past few weeks – the Epsom Derby winners Australia and Ruler of The World. A few days ago it was announced that Magician will head to the American subsidiary Ashford Farm after Breeders’ Cup. Which of the studs will become a new home to Adelaide is yet to be seen. What is certain now is that he will operate as a shuttle stallion in Australia. This would mean that Australia gets a very attractive son of the most successful sire today, since neither Galileo nor his successful son of the rival Dalham Stud, New Aproach, no longer shuttle down under.

Miloslav Vlček

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