Justify returns to Coolmore roster after flying start in Australia
Unbeaten US Triple Crown champion one of 15 stallions on Magnier family’s southern hemisphere line-up
Coolmore’s big red Ferrari, the unbeaten US Triple Crown champion Justify (Scat Daddy), will return to Australia for stud duties after a strong start from his high-profile first southern hemisphere-bred crop of two-year-olds.
Justify, one of America’s hottest young stallions, was rested from shuttling in 2022 but the emergence of brilliant filly Learning To Fly, first-start winner Legacies and the talented Californian has prompted the decision to once again bring him down to Coolmore Australia.
“We welcome Justify back to Australia with open arms, on the back of a remarkable start to his stud career. While it is only early days for him in Australia, he has already produced arguably the best two-year-old filly in Australia in Learning To Fly and is the leading first season sire by a significant margin,” Coolmore Australia’s Tom Moore said.
“The feedback we are getting from trainers throughout Australia suggests that this is only the tip of the iceberg for him in this part of the world.
“This coming Saturday alone, he has great chances in stakes races in both Melbourne and Adelaide and we expect his credentials to continue to improve as the season progresses.”
A fee in 2023 is yet to be confirmed, with the Coolmore hierarchy weighing up their options for Justify who has Legacies contesting Saturday’s Anzac Day Stakes (Listed, 1400m) at Sandown and Air Assault in the SA Breeders’ Stakes (Gr 3, 1200m) at Morphettville.
Justify covered 373 mares in his three seasons in Australia, where he stood most recently at a fee of $55,000 in 2021.
The outcross option that Justify provides the Danehill-centric Australian Stud Book has also started to pay dividends, according to Coolmore, with Learning To Fly a daughter of a Fastnet Rock mare and Legacies out of a Danehill Dancer mare.
“Not only are his two-year-olds doing the job on the track, but there was also great demand for his second crop yearlings, who sold for up to $1.4 million and averaged in excess of $215,000,” Moore continued.
“His second crop yearlings are out of mares of the calibre of the likes of Sunlight, Invincibella, Champagne Cuddles, Nakeeta Jane and Formality, so the continuity of quality stock coming through the system has generated confidence among breeders.”
Veteran sire Fastnet Rock (Danehill), who will be in the serving barn for a 19th season, heads up the 15-stallion Coolmore Australia roster. He will stand the 2023 season at a reduced fee of $110,000.
So You Think (High Chaparral), who challenged I Am Invincible (Invincible Spirit) for the 2021-22 Australian sires’ premiership, has earned a small fee increase to $99,000, at which price second season sire Home Affairs (I Am Invincible) will also stand for in 2023.
Coolmore has previously announced that Starspangledbanner (Choisir) ($33,000) would return to Australia on their roster and that high-class sprinting two- and three-year-old colt Best Of Bordeaux (Snitzel) ($27,500) would retire to Jerrys Plains this year.
Of So You Think, who has sired ten stakes winners across Australia and New Zealand so far this season, including last Saturday’s BRC Princess Stakes (Listed, 1615m) winner Street Gossip, Moore said: “So You Think is well and truly one of the best stallions in Australia, and has been for a number of seasons.
“Only Snitzel and I Am Invincible have produced more Group winners than him in Australia this season and his yearlings sold for an aggregate total of more than $18 million, with a top price of $900,000 this year.
“He was the busiest stallion in Australia last year and a slight increase is more than warranted.”
Coolmore supported Justify with a large number of its best mares in his early years at stud and the same approach was taken with another shuttler in Wootton Bassett (Iffraaj) whose fee has been raised from $71,500 to $93,500 for his third Australian stint.
“Wootton Bassett has been supported with mares of the highest quality in each of his previous seasons in Australia, and when you look at the quality of his foals on the ground it is easy to understand the level of demand for him. They are outstanding,” Moore said.
“He stands for the equivalent of approximately $250,000 in Ireland where he has covered some of the best mares in the world in recent years, so his star will only continue to rise, and we believe he still represents great value for local breeders.”
Pride Of Dubai (Street Cry) ($27,500), who is sixth on the leading sires’ table with progeny earnings of more than $11 million, also earned a fee increase for the first time as he prepares for his eighth year at Coolmore.
Dual Group 1-winning sprinter Home Affairs covered 203 mares in his first season at $110,000 but Coolmore has chosen to slightly cut his fee for his second season.
“Home Affairs was the busiest first season sire in Australia last season and is a commercial breeder’s dream. He covered an incredibly strong book of mares and was supported by the majority of the best breeders throughout Australasia,” Moore said.
“Despite pulling his fee back slightly, we have the utmost faith in this horse and can’t wait to see his first crop foals later in the year.”
Saxon Warrior (Deep Impact) and Magna Grecia (Invincible Spirit) will not return to Australia this year.
Coolmore Australia roster
Fastnet Rock (Danehill) $110,000 $165,000
Home Affairs (I Am Invincible) $99,000 $110,000
So You Think (High Chaparral) $99,000 $93,500
Wootton Bassett (Iffraaj) $93,500 $71,500
Pierro (Lonhro) $82,500 $99,000
Justify (Scat Daddy) TBC did not shuttle
St Mark’s Basilica (Siyouni) $44,000 unchanged
Starspangledbanner (Choisir) $33,000 did not shuttle
Yes Yes Yes (Rubick) $33,000 $38,500
Pride Of Dubai (Street Cry) $27,500 $16,500
Best Of Bordeaux (Snitzel) $27,500 new
King’s Legacy (Redoute’s Choice) $27,500 $33,000
Churchill (Galileo) $22,000 unchanged
Acrobat (Fastnet Rock) $13,750 unchanged
Adelaide (Galileo) $5,500 unchanged