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Son of Top European Danehill Sire a Valuable Import



ONE of the most spectacular efforts in a big event in England in recent years has been the eleven lengths win in new 2400m course record time of the Dansili 4-year-old stallion Harbinger in the 2010 edition of the great wfa test, the King George V1 & Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Ascot.  Now at the Shadai Stallion Station in Japan, Harbinger turned in what was written up as ‘a devastating performance that will live long in memory.’ It was one that added to the stature of Dansili as one of the stand out sires got by Danehill from his use in Ireland.


Now a $100,000 plus fee sire at Juddmonte stud in England, the Dansili reputation has also been enhanced by the performances of many of his other offspring, including Rail Link (one of the best 3yos in the world in 2006, won Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe, Grand Prix de Paris), Zambezi Sun (Grand Prix de Paris by five lengths), Proviso (four Group1s 1600-1700m USA), Passage of Time (Group1 winner France at two), Zoffany (a leading Irish 2yo 2010, two Group1 seconds at 1600m at three) and Strategic Prince (another prominent 2yo), to mention a few.


The sire dynasty founded by Dansili, himself joint top rated miler in Europe at four in 2000, is only in its infancy, but got off to an encouraging start in 2011 with three of his sons represented by first crop juvenile winners.Two of them are Strategic Prince, sire of 17 winners headed by Ireland Group1 winner La Collina, and Rail Link, the source of winners England, France and Italy.  The ability of Dansili to get talented performers from1000m to 3200m and his qualifications as a superior Danehill racehorse and sire in a different environment, suggests his sons could be good propositions as sires in Australia and New Zealand.


One currently available out here for use on a lease arrangement is Illustrious Blue, a 2003 foaled English stallion who has been retired after campaigns in both hemispheres, including in Australia a competent ninth in the 2010 Melbourne Cup. He was imported by Hunter Valley based Australian Bloodstock, the same astute operators who finished third in this year’s Cup with another importation, Lucas Cranach.  Earner all told of $891,893, Illustrious Blue before coming to Australia proved tough, sound and versatile, performing well from the equivalent of 1400m to 3200m, in the process winning ten races, seven of them on his home track, ‘Glorious’ Goodwood in England’s Sussex region.  At three in England he won five races – four at Goodwood, two each at 1400m and1600m and one at 1800m, finished a neck second at Ascot and twice third.  He drew the comment after winning over 1800m at Dubai first up at four, ‘No denying his superiority’ and went on to crown his European career by outstaying his breeding and taking three important staying events, the historic Goodwood Cup-Gr.2 (3200m), Goodwood Glorious Stakes-Gr.3 (2400m) and Ascot Sagaro Stakes-Gr.3 (3200m). In the Goodwood Cup he trounced the third placegetter, 2007 Melbourne Cup runner up Purple Moon, by four lengths.


A half-brother to five winners, Illustrious Blue is bred on cross of two first class milers as his dam Gypsy Moss, a winner of four races at 1045m or less, including a Listed event, is by Forli’s grandson Efisio, a winner of eight races to 1600m – England and Italy - champion older miler Italy at five and a speed influence.  Another Efisio mare went to the Danehill sire Danetime and produced 2011 Eliza Park stud visitor Bushranger, a champion juvenile in Europe in 2008.


Illustrious Blue’s grandam Rock the Boat was a half-sister to the stakes winners Rock City (seven wins, a leading European juvenile and 3-year-old sprinter) and Kerrera (Group 3 winner, second English One Thousand Guineas). Each of the first four dams have produced stakes winners and the fifth, Rosy Dolly, is a half-sister to Dante, 1945 English Derby winner and subsequently an influential sire.


Now owned by a syndicate managed by Peter Morley of Belhus Racing, Illustrious Blue has not been to stud and is currently in Western Australia. Peter would welcome enquiries about standing the Dansili stallion on lease arrangement in Australia or New Zealand on telephones (08) 9571 3164, mobile 0408 9111 22 or email 

Courtesy of Brian Russell Bloodstock Media Services  


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