THE sale-topper at next week’s Easter Yearling sale could be determined at Royal Randwick tomorrow. Lot 135 is the half-brother to champion mare Winx who is aiming to stretch her incredible winning sequence to nine in tomorrow’s Doncaster Mile.
Lot 135 - Snitzel x Vegas Showgirl - Colt - half-brother to Winx (inset)
But what really counts is what his full-brother El Divino does in the Kindergarten that counts; a win could potentially add a half-million dollars or more to the Newmarket bound colt’s value. El Divino is the fourth foal of Vegas Showgirl and was retained by his breeder John Camillieri of Fairway and Vancouver fame and handed to Gai Waterhouse to train. The son of Snitzel won both of his trials before a brilliant near 5-lens debut win at Gosford back on March 17.
“I got a report from Gai this morning that he is absolutely flying, personally I think he’ll be very hard to beat and it that would make it pretty special for a mare to have two winners on the first day at The Championships, particularly for such a young mare,” Segenhoe Stud Manager Peter O’Brien said. “El Divino is a magnificent looking individual and I am just delighted that John had the faith in him to race him. From day one, Gai has just been raving about him and has done a terrific job. She’s been patient with him and a lot of the mare’s progeny are all pretty typical, they’re not big showpiece type yearlings but they’re racehorses. O’Brien knows more than most what it takes to make a racehorse and to be a sale-topper — he was front and centre at Coolmore before making the move to the boutique Segenhoe nursery at Scone. “You never know, sales toppers can come from anywhere but I would be very surprised if he wasn’t in top 10 colts, he ticks every box,” O’Brien said. “The Frankels will have to have appeal, they are all very well bred and Street Cry is going to be highly in demand also and obviously Fastnet Rock.
The Frankels are obviously the X-factor. “As the last few years have shown, there is interrelation money at the top end and you would assume that Frankel would be one that they are targeting.” O’Brien has a long association with this family having bought Winx and El Divino’s dam Vegas Showgirl for Camilleri at the 2008 Magic Millions National Broodmare Sale for the not insignificant sum of $455,000. “When John and I were talking at the sale we thought she’d make $250,000 odd,” O’Brien said. “But honestly she was a mare we just had to have because she was just so good looking. “John is very much about pedigree and type and race performance. When we bought her she tick every box, she didn’t have a big, bold black-type pedigree but where she made up for it was in looks and even regardless of who she is — she is the best looking mare I have ever seen. “As type she is just a queen. We bought her on race performance but particularly on type. Black cats throw black kittens.”
“I do believe that Vegas is going to be one of these blue-hen mares. You get a champion and some people say it’s a one-off but I think El Divino will change the perception on Saturday and also (Fastnet Rock three-year-old son) Win Win Leader in Hong Kong. “In 12 months time, this mare could have three very good horses from her first four foals.”
Article: Winning Post 1st April 2016