Saturday, December 5, 2009

Nijinsky, Fanfreluche & Vice Regent - 2009


It's easy to see the impact of Nijinsky and Vice Regent on today's thoroughbred scene. In this year's Breeders Cup over 1/3 of the Dancer's descendants came through Nijinsky lines (11 female and 2 male lines). There were 3 decendants of Vice Regent (all females).

Understandably, you have to look a little harder to see the impact of one of my favorite mares of all time - Fanfreluche - but for a mare she is still having quite an impact. She was represented in this year's Breeders Cup by her great great great grandsons Cannonball who finished 3rd in the Turf Sprint and Justenuffhumor who finished 3rd in the Mile. Both those boys were out of mares from her champion firstborn L'Enjoleur's line.

She has 2 descendants in the top 30 world rankings this year. Great great great grandsons Sacred Kingdom ranked #18 and Viewed ranked #23. Sacred Kingdom won the Hong Kong Sprint above which should move him up the ladder a bit.

Australia's leading sire in 2007/8 was Fanny's great great grandson Encosta de Lago. Flying Spur is another solid Australian sire and great great grandson. It looks like these two will make sure she still has an impact for a few years to come.

I overlooked one more of the characters from that 1967 crop back in 2005 but she might be worth mentioning now. As a runner Christmas Wishes was in the money in almost 80% of her 23 starts. She was also a pretty successful broodmare but I don't think her most significant descendant showed up until 2006 or so and we will not know what kind of sire he is for a few more years. Her great great grandson Discreet Cat was born in 2003. He won the UAE Derby and Cigar Mile and earned over $1.5 million. He was undefeated until he ran into Invasor in the Dubai World Cup but who knows what would have happened if he was not diagnosed with a tumour on his throat after the race. He had a couple of 3rd place finishes to end his career and now stands at the Godolphin farm. His first crop is just hitting the track. Let's keep an eye out for Discreet Cat and Christmas Wishes going forward as well. What a second crop the Dancer produced.

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