Three issues back, Track To Track profiled Australia’s leading First Crop Sires, noting that five spots in the top 10 had been booked by Queensland-based sires.
Well, as we move to the business end of the season, there’s been a fair shuffle with Victorian stallion Written Tycoon moving to the top of the chart and a much more even ‘spread’ of state representation.
Besides the Eliza Park based Written Tycoon there are two others who stand south of the Murray, including Churchill Downs (Blue Gum Farm) and Gonski (Darley VIC), while Queensland’s triumvirate are All Bar One (Oaklands Stud), Red Dazzler (Eureka Stud) and Hotel Grand (Racetree).
Nadeem, second on the ladder courtesy of Triple Asset’s Group win at Flemington, has been joined by his Darley stablemate Ad Valorem to give NSW two pozzies, while Western Australia is well placed with Flying Pegasus (Touchstone) and Saxon (Heytesbury Stud) filling third and sixth respectively.
The proliferation of rich events attached to state bonus schemes has clearly assisted some of the first croppers, but at the time of writing, there appeared to only one them with a real chance of getting a huge bump between now and the Queensland winter carnival.
This time last year Stratum wasn’t breaking any world records but grabbed an unassailable lead when Crystal Lily took out the $3.5 million Golden Slipper and, we might add, hasn’t looked back ever since.
It’s looking likely at this stage that the only 2011 Slipper contender by a first crop sire is the promising Written Tycoon colt, Masthead, albeit a fair way down in current markets.
Still, courtesy of Mastead, Grahame Begg’s stakes placed Written Consent and recent Doomben winner Trump, Written Tycoon has a $100k plus buffer and boasts a 5.67 average earnings index, albeit from just six runners.
Given that Masthead was knocked down to the Freedman Brothers for $65,000 at last year’s Melbourne Premier (not bad off a then service fee of $8,250), the colt has repaid the faith by pulling in $328,250 from his five starts.
“We’ve always had a huge opinion of Written Tycoon, whom we syndicated once his racing career (STC Todman Slipper-G2 at two) was over,” Iskander Racing’s Suman Hedge points out. “However, he’s even exceeded our lofty aspirations and with books of 118 and 198 in his last two seasons at stud, you’ll be seeing a lot more of Written Tycoon in the years to come.”