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Australian-bred Oh Susanna wins Grade One in South Africa

Les Young | 10.01.2018

The ever increasing internationalization of racing and breeding has seldom been better illustrated than by the result of last Saturday’s Cartier Paddock Stakes (Gr 1, 9f) for fillies and mares at Kenilworth in South Africa.

Winner by a length and a half was Oh Susanna (Street Cry), bred in Australia by South African Gaynor Rupert of Drakenstein Stud, by an Irishbred sire from a mare, Sharp Susan (Touch Gold), bred and raced with notable success in the United States before importation to Australia.


For deceased Street Cry, best known in Australia as the father of Winx and equally respected in the United States as the sire of Zenyatta, the victory was a significant one giving Street Cry his 20th winner at Group/Grade One level and his 115th individual stakes winner.


The story behind the breeding of Oh Susanna is a complex tale and began when her dam Sharp Susan was sent to Australia in 2011 with the plan to put her in foal then sell as a standout in a booming market.


Bred in the United States by WinStar Farm and partners, Sharp Susan represented a very desirable proposition given her pedigree and racing performances which included victories in Grade Two and Grade Three tests plus a Grade One placing.


Tested in foal to Street Cry, Sharp Susan looked the star offering at the 2012 Inglis Australian Easter Broodmare Sale in Sydney and did not disappoint, fetching top price of $1,050,000 to the bid of Grant Pritchard-Gordon’s Badgers Bloodstock acting for Drakenstein Stud, one of South Africa’s leading breeding establishments.


Sad to say, Sharp Susan’s subsequent foal died after birth but Darley kindly offered a return booking to Street Cry in 2013 with Oh Susanna the well deserved result. In between, the mare was covered by another Darley stallion, Bernardini, foaling the South African winner Biblical Susan.


After Oh Susanna, Sharp Susan produced the as yet unraced two-year-old colt Signore Fox (Exceed and Excel) and in 2016 a filly by Fastnet Rock (Danehill) but after that foaling she was sent to Ireland in November 2016.


Before her arrival in Australia Sharp Susan bred Indiano Jones (A.P. Indy), twice a winner in North America and a placegetter in two graded stakes events in Canada.


Only a maiden winner but runnerup in the recent Cape Fillies Guineas (Gr 1, 1600m) before last Saturday, Oh Susanna stormed to the lead in the Paddock Stakes at the furlong mark before going on to a comfortable win over Lady In Black (Dynasty) last season’s champion juvenile filly.


Oh Susanna’s racing class hardly comes as a surprise as her dam, a multiple stakes winner, is one of three black type winners left by her dam Winter’s Gone (Dynaformer) whose six foals are all winners.


The other two stakes winners from Winter’s Gone are both Grade One winners, Spring At Last (Silver Deputy) and Sharp Lisa (Dixieland Band), remembered in Australia as the dam of the 2017 The Metropolitan (Gr 1, 2400m) winner Foundry (Galileo) and his brother Housesofparliament (Galileo), a Group Three winner in Britain and a placegetter in the 2016 St Leger (Gr 1, 1m6.5f).


Oh Susanna’s third dam Stark Winter (Graustark) was a minor black type winner in the United States before outperforming as a producer, her nine winners including three black type winners, most notable of them Bien Bien (Manila), a fourtime Grade One winner but subsequently only moderately successful at stud.


Further back in the family you will find the crack two-year-old and sprinter Caravaggio (Scat Daddy), retired this year to Coolmore Stud in Ireland and a likely visitor to NSW for our 2018 season.


Oh Susanna has an extremely well balanced pedigree relatively free of the blood of Northern Dancer (Nearctic) but her maternal grandsire Touch Gold (Deputy Minister) is linebred to him     3 x 3.


Hail To Reason (Turn-to) appears 5m x 5m in Oh Susanna’s pedigree background while other key names duplicated are Native Dancer (Polynesian), Nashua (Nasrullah), Ribot (Tenerani) and Princequillo (Prince Rose).

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