Darley sires rewrite record books

Darley’s sires Exceed And Excel and Lonhro are rewriting the record books this season.

Exceed And Excel became the fastest stallion to sire 100 individual winners in Australia when Sheikh Mohammed’s filly Namaste won the Parker Bros. Maiden Plate at Seymour on January 7.

Namaste (2f Exceed And Excel – Adorara by Silver Hawk) is prepared by Lee Freedman and is her sire’s second juvenile winner from his third southern crop.  She follows Fountains who won for the same owner-trainer combination at Bendigo on December 10.

Lonhro is also approaching the century mark.  His tally reached 91 individual winners in Australia when Launay and his younger sister Beau Vallon completed a winning double at Kilmore and Hobart on Sunday.  Both winners are from the Palace Music mare Eve In Seychelles.

Lonhro retired to Woodlands Stud in 2004 after garnering Australian Horse of the Year honours and his first winner arrived when Black Minx won at Doomben on December 1, 2007.

He sired just 6 individual winners from 31 starters in his freshman year.  There were 101 foals in that initial crop but, to his credit, Woodlands trainer John Hawkes didn’t push them as two year-olds.

The patient approach paid off when Lonhro was credited with 60 winners in the second-season sires’ premiership for 2008-09.  He was runner-up to Exceed And Excel (65) in that category after the pair joined forces at Darley’s NSW base in the Hunter Valley.

Lonhro has exploded this season.  Latest AAP figures show he is a clear leader on the third-season ladder in the winners and prizemoney categories with 53 winners of $3.21 million.  Exceed And Excel is next with 44 winners of $1.57 million and then it’s daylight to third-placed Statue Of Liberty.

Lonhro flag-bearer Denman is ready to resume in the Zeditave Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield on Australia Day.  He hasn’t raced since finishing an unplaced favourite in the Caulfield Guineas (1600m) on October 10.

Denman (3c Lonhro-Peach by Vain) has won 6 of his 8 starts.  His only other defeat was on debut at Flemington in December 2008.  He won a Kilmore maiden in June before progressing to city wins at Flemington and Sandown.  Sent north and freshened, the colt quickened smartly to win the G3 Run to the Roses prior to a G1 triumph in the Golden Rose at Rosehill in August.

Trainer Peter Snowden then sent him out for a sixth successive win in the G2 Stan Fox Stakes at Randwick before going south for the Guineas.

Snowden enjoyed a close association with Lonhro when he was long-time stable foreman for the Ingham family and agrees there are similarities between father and son.  “They are a lot alike physically,” he explained.  “Denman is a seriously talented horse but he still has a long way to go to equal Lonhro.”

Denman is raced by Sheikh Mohammed and is a half-brother to G1 Victorian Sires’ Produce Stakes winner Preserve (Canny Lad) and LR Scone Dark Jewel Classic winner Rio Osa (Canny Lad).

Their dam Peach only raced twice before being retired to Woodlands.  She was beaten by Pauillac on debut at Hawkesbury in December 1993 and bowed out ten months later with a win at Gosford despite racing erratically.

Peach has a 2yo colt by Commands named Fragar and a yearlling colt by Lonhro.  She missed the following year to Darley sire Librettist but is back in foal to Lonhro on a September 2 cover.