Statistics for 2012-13 racing, a year that ended July 31, indicate that Black Caviar’s sire Bel Esprit (by the Nijinsky sire Royal Academy) has set new Victorian records for earnings and numerically and at the same time equalled the national best for one sire for number of individual winners.
Bred by Philip Gunter, sold at the Sydney Classic Yearling sale for only $9,000 and a leading Australian juvenile and 3YO sprinter, the Eliza Park International based Bel Esprit has finished the year with Australian figures of 155 winners (better than 50%) of 249 races and $7,363,639. Overseas runners increase these to 164 winners of 266 races and $8,166,216.
His national individual score of 155 winners equals the Australian record set in 2010-11 by the Danehill sire Commands, now at Darley after starting with the Inghams at Woodlands, Hunter Valley.
Since he had his first runners in 2006-07 (nine 2YO winners), Bel Esprit has been consistently successful. He has been Victoria’s Leading Sire by earnings and numbers in each of the past five years and nationally on earnings fifth 2010-11 and sixth in each of 2011-12 and 2012-13. He stands the 2013 season on $33,000. - Brian Russell Media